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Major brands back flying taxi and drone airport plan

Urban-Air Port has announced multiple new partnerships with leading brands to enhance the customer experience at its first hub for flying taxis and delivery drones – Air-One – due to open in Coventry this April.

The site – backed by the Government, Supernal (Hyundai’s advanced air mobility division) and Coventry City Council – will form a blueprint for more than 200 similar sites planned by Urban-Air Port across the world in the next five years.

The partners include: Anatomie, Bottega S.p.A, Eurest (part of Compass Group), LG Business Solutions, Mother and Paul & Shark.

Ricky Sandhu, founder and executive chairman of Urban-Air Port, said: “Once complete, Air-One will spark into life an entirely new world of affordable, zero-emission and congestion-free travel.

“However, this is not just about getting from A to B, it’s about the journey itself. Air-One is so much more than a landing pad for flying taxis and delivery drones. It will deliver a world-class interactive customer experience – one that can be replicated right across the world as we build our network of over 200 sites globally.”

He added that the partnerships announced today (Wednesday, March 9) and the investment made by them to participate in the launch of Air-One represent a “huge vote of confidence”.

Commercial flights are expected to begin this decade, including Supernal’s flying taxi which enters commercial operations in 2028.

According to McKinsey, some flight operators could see passenger numbers reach 70,000 per day as early as 2030, while Urban-Air Port predicts its global passenger numbers could reach up to 28million a year within the next five years.

Urban-Air Port vertiports will provide the ground infrastructure to support this new market.

Morag Freathy, managing director of Eurest, B&I division of Compass Group UK & Ireland, said: “We’re really excited to be collaborating with Urban-Air Port on the revolutionary Air One project.

“As a business, we’re all about breaking boundaries and leading the way on what the future of hospitality can look like, with sustainability at the heart of all that we do. We can’t wait to get started working with such a forward-thinking company.”

Urban-Air Port wants to unlock a future ‘lifestyle retail experience’ that integrates retail into travellers’ physical journey from A to B via a unifying smartphone app.

The app will enable travellers to plan their journey, engage with brands associated with Urban-Air Choice and integrate with other forms of transport.

For example, someone could rent an e-scooter, travel to an Urban-Air Port, take an air taxi across a city, order a coffee on route and have it waiting at an Urban-Air Café at their destination, all controlled from the palm of their hand.

Keith Hunter, chief retail officer at Urban-Air Port, says that Urban-Air Port’s vertiports are unlocking an entirely new sector within the travel industry – zero-emission electric air mobility.

“With that comes the opportunity to develop an entirely novel consumer experience, an experience that allows people to interact with brands and services like never before and – through our app – continue that experience beyond the terminal,” he said.

“This gives our customers absolute flexibility and control over every aspect of their journey and any services they require, perfectly complementing their lifestyle needs. It’s a phenomenal opportunity for consumers and brands alike.”

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