If you live in New York or have ever attempted getting to the airport peak hours, you know it’s a bit of a struggle. Now New Yorkers can save time on the airport commute by booking a lift with Gotham Air.
The luxury 6-minute helicopter ride just started service to JFK and Newark airports from Pier 6 in downtown Manhattan. Prices will run you similar to what you might pay for a black car service.
The choppers are decked out in Hermes leather furnishings and passengers receive complimentary hors d’oeuvres provided by celebrity chef Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery. Beverage services are available for afternoon flights.
Gotham Air was created to fill a niche in the market that wasn’t currently being met. According to a company press release, CEO Tim Hayes “paid too much to go to the airport with his friend… [and] realized there must be a more affordable and efficient alternative.”
Gotham Air doesn’t own the choppers but they formed an alliance with Helicopter Flight Services. Gotham Air’s digital service platform is integrated with Helicopter Flight Services’ fleet of helicopters. The fleet includes seven Bell 407’s, one Sikorsky S76 C+ and one Bell 427.
Transfer to your terminal:
Once you arrive at the airport, expect VIP lounges and a quick connection.
- JFK Airport: Upon landing, a shuttle van will greet you on the tarmac as soon as you get off of the helicopter to take you to your departure terminal.
- Newark Airport: Upon landing, you will walk through the private aviation lobby to find a shuttle van to bring you to your departure terminal.
The Downtown Manhattan Heliport is located just above the Battery on Pier 6, on the East River north of the Staten Island Ferry and south of the South Street Seaport. Direct highway access is available to heliport users via the FDR Drive on the east side of Manhattan and West Street on the west side. The entrance to the heliport is just south of where the FDR Drive begins, directly opposite Vietnam Veterans Plaza.
Passengers should arrive at least 10 minutes prior to the departure time and wait for the helicopter in the VIP lounge.
Helicopter passengers are allowed one carry-on with a maximum weight of 25 lbs. Their website states that excess luggage transportation will be available soon.
Inclement weather guarantee:
If winds are too high or the cloud cover is too low, the company says it will pick up guests at their home or office in Manhattan and whisk them to the airport in a Tesla S.
The choppers run seven days a week. First time passengers pay $99 to JFK or Newark. Sign up online to be a part of their beta group for the discount. The $99 rate is for first time passengers only for travel booked by February 28 for flights departing before March 15. After the first ride, a one-way fare is $199 to $219 dependent on departure time.
We’ll continue to watch this as the company says more heliports, destinations and expanded hours of operations are coming soon! Meanwhile, if you are in New York let us know if you’ve checked out Gotham Air.
Photos: Gotham Air