BLADE India launches same-day return helicopter services for Tirumala Tirupati pilgrims
The service aims at enhancing the connectivity to Tirupati and making travel more convenient and time effective for pilgrims, especially the elders
FlyBlade India (“BLADE India”), a joint venture between Hunch Ventures and BLADE Air Mobility, Inc. (NASDAQ: BLDE), has launched same-day return helicopter services connecting Bengaluru to Tirupati Airport as part of its expansion plan. The flights are available ‘on demand’ basis and can accommodate five guests at a time which can be crowdsourced and/or booked via charter. Onward journey from the Bangalore airport shall start in the morning hours between 09:15 am to 09:30 am from HAL, whereas the return flights will be in the evening between 04:00 pm to 4:15 pm.
The service aims at enhancing the connectivity to Tirupati and making travel more convenient and time effective for pilgrims, especially the elders. This route is now operational and open for bookings on the BLADE India website.
BLADE India also expanded to Karnataka by connecting Bangalore to Coorg and Kabini. It provides by-the-seat helicopter services to Coorg and Kabini.
Commenting on the launch of BLADE’s services in Tirupati, Amit Dutta, Managing Director, BLADE India said, “Pilgrimage in India presents itself as a transformative odyssey, but it remains fraught with accessibility challenges, particularly for the elderly. Among the cherished destinations, Tirupati stands as a beacon of devotion. Keeping this in mind, BLADE India endeavors to improve connectivity to this spiritual destination with its goal to connect popular destinations which are otherwise not accessible or well connected. We are delighted that the customary Tirupati darshan, encompassing two full days of travel, finds respite with BLADE India. Pilgrims can now traverse the same celestial journey, returning to the city on the very day, unraveling a tapestry of convenience, swiftness, and timeless efficacy”
BLADE India has also partnered with EVA manufacturers like Eve Air Mobility to prepare for an eventual equipment swap of conventional helicopters with Electric Vertical Aircrafts (EVAs). Under the partnership, BLADE will get up to 200 of EVE’s aircraft ( Name to be added in) EVAs by 2026. EVAs will have reduced noise and carbon footprints as well as lower operating costs. Over time, this gradual equipment swap will result in lower prices for fliers as well as more landing zone options in the future. The Bengaluru launch in October 2022, was a pilot project for the partners.
BLADE India started in November 2019, with its maiden flights in Maharashtra between Mumbai, Pune and Shirdi. In Maharashtra, BLADE India has expanded its by-the-seat services to Aamby Valley and Hilton Shillim, and introduced leisure routes to Atmantan Resorts and Mahabaleshwar.
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