Uber Copter is now available to everyone with an iPhone

(Image credit: Michael Noble Jr./Bloomberg)

What you need to know

  • Uber Copter is now available to everyone.
  • It's only available on iPhone, though.
  • Only one route is currently available.

Uber might be the company everyone loves to hate, but there is no doubting its ambition. Hot on the heels of announcing a new Uber Work app, the folks at Road Show have shared their experiences with Uber Copter.

Now, Uber Copter isn't new. In fact, it launched earlier this summer but you had to be one of the chosen ones to get in on it. Now though, anyone can use it. You know, if a helicopter is the only way you want to travel. And of course, you book the whole thing via the Uber app (opens in new tab).

Road Show says they booked a ride from the Bowery Ballroom in NYC to the TWA Hotel. In order to make that possible, Uber strings cars and helicopters together into one ride. A car picks you up and takes you to the helicopter and the helicopter does the rest. Apparently that's called Modality and it's the hot new thing. It'll also include things like scooters eventually, but for now it's cars and helicopters. As if that isn't already cool enough.

But today we're talking helicopters and, after a short jaunt down from the Bowery to the Manhattan heliport in the back of an UberX Toyota Camry, the Uber app chimed to prompt me of my next mode of transport. This time the app listed the means of conveyance as a Black Bell 430 and, instead of a license plate number, it listed the tail number of the helicopter -- a nice touch.

Once you arrive at the helipad you check-in and go through some safety information, and then you're off. Road Show says the whole thing cost just shy of $200, which isn't cheap. But if you need to avoid traffic and have the money to spare, this has to be the most baller way of getting around NYC we've ever come across.

Uber says this is only available to users of iPhones right now, but Android will be coming online at some point in the future. And it's only available from Manhattan to JFK, too.

We'd suggest checking out the full Road Show rundown of how this all works, along with some awesome photographs of NYC from the air. Love it or loathe it, Uber knows how to put on a show.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.

  • I'm actually tempted... I have to go from Manhattan to JFK in a bit, and the Lyft cost is about $80... So why not do it in style and splurge once?
  • Selfie us when you do!
  • Eh, with all this "cancel BS" I try to keep my real face not associated with my username.
  • Not sure what Cancel BS is, but I don't really mind my face being online, I just wouldn't want people to know more personal information like my address etc
  • My initial thought when I looked at the $200 was "that's not bad". When you compare costs of Lyft or Uber to drive, and then you look at the time involved, $200 is downright cheap. There are easily hundreds of people per day that miss flights due to traffic and if they have an international flight they might have to wait until the next day to fly, which adds close to $200 for a hotel room.
  • I don't really worry about traffic since I always do JFK since they have the AirTrain. But I figure I may "treat myself" this time.