BLADE, the company started by the previous Chief Operating Officer of Warner Music Group Robert Wiesenthal, is bringing aviation travel to a whole new level.
The app allows you to book a flight with their helicopter, seaplane, or private jet anywhere in the world. Before departure or after arrival, you can stay in one of their exclusive BLADE lounges.
The company currently operates in Manhattan and San Francisco, although they're quickly expanding.
One of the coolest things BLADE currently offers is flights to and from NYC and JFK every weekday from 7:00AM to 7:00PM. The cost is $195 a seat, which for a comfortable helicopter ride "around" New York City seems to be worth it.
UberAIR announced in 2016 that they plan to offer affordable ride sharing via airplane or helicopter by 2023. As of now, BLADE seems to be catering primarily to executives looking to retreat to the Hamptons or get to their downtown offices. However, a top-down approach would allow them to test the viability of helicopter travel with wealthy executives and then expand into offering rides for the average Joe.
Their lounges also seem to be the real deal. There are four in Manhattan, one in Miami, and others in production in Nantucket, Westchester, and Los Angeles according to their website.
From the lounge, you can check in for your flight and order drinks and snacks to enjoy while you wait. They also serve Casa Dragones Tequila and VieVite rose in custom BLADE sippy cups if you decide to bring it with you on your ride.
Under 28 Years Old?
Those of you that are under 28 and want to enjoy BLADE can take a different route. BLADE-GX is a card with a $295 introduction fee that gives you access to flights from Manhattan and the Hamptons, Nantucket, or Miami.
I'm interested to see whether BLADE will continue to operate primarily for wealthier executives or choose to expand into cheaper alternatives for people. As of now, they're off to a really cool start.