Dubai is poised to achieve a significant milestone, as it anticipates the full operation of flying taxis by the year 2026.
This announcement comes from Duncan Walker, the CEO of Sky ports, a London-based company entrusted with the construction of the UAE’s inaugural vertiport.

He made this confident proclamation during the conclusion of the 3rd Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport.

Walker envisions Dubai becoming the world’s first city to establish a comprehensive network of vertiports dedicated to permanent air taxi services by 2026, employing electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft.

Unlike traditional helipads or heliports tailored for conventional helicopters, vertiports are designed to accommodate drones and advanced air mobility (AAM) transport, including eVTOLs.

These facilities are equipped to handle multiple drones simultaneously, necessitating adequate spacing between landing and launching pads, and they are also equipped to recharge eVTOLs.

Walker’s announcement aligns with Dubai’s ambitious goal of launching air taxi services by 2026. Notably, Skyports Infrastructure received approval for its vertiport design during the World Government Summit in Dubai earlier that year.

During this event, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, as well as Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, were presented with a vertiport model by Mattar Al Tayer, the RTA director general and chairman of the board of executive directors.

The central hub for these flying taxis will be located near Dubai International Airport (DXB), initially serving vertiport stations in Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Downtown, and Dubai Marina.

These aerial taxis are expected to attain top speeds of 300 kmph and possess a maximum range of 241 km, accommodating a pilot and up to four passengers.

Walker emphasized the remarkable time-saving benefits of flying taxis. During peak hours, the typical commute from DXB to Palm Jumeirah, which previously took 45 minutes, will be reduced to a mere six minutes, with an additional 10 minutes spent at the vertiport.

Beyond time efficiency, aerial taxis offer the advantage of zero carbon emissions during operation and contribute to alleviating ground congestion.

Walker commended Dubai for being a pioneer in shaping the future of transportation, attributing this success to efficient government coordination, a well-established regulatory framework, a network of suitable sites, integrated transport systems, and robust business demand.

Last Updated: 28 September 2023