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Flying taxis in Dubai could be launched as early as 2026


Will flying taxis be the new way of getting around town? Dubai certainly hopes that in just three years' time - designs for new air taxi stations across the city are approved.

  Dubai hopes to launch the "flight sharing" service by 2026.

The Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has announced the approval of designs for new air taxi stations throughout the city.

Renewing Dubai's commitment to the flying taxi programme, he said the services would be operational within three years - after they were first promoted in 2017.

A promotional video, also posted to Twitter by the governor, shows a six-rotor electric flying taxi produced by Joby Aviation, based in Santa Cruz, California.

The US airline, highlighting the innovation after a meeting with the leader, tweeted that Dubai was a "high-growth, high-innovation economy" and that it was "honored to introduce Joby" and "discuss what flight sharing can do for Dubai."

The Dubai Roads and Transport Authority said it is working with leading advanced air carriers - Skyports Infrastructure and Joby Aviation.

"We are excited about this opportunity and are actively exploring the possibility," said Oliver Walker Jones, a spokesperson for Joby Aviation.

It is hoped that there will be "safe and efficient operations" of the aircraft and a "smooth end-to-end passenger journey".

The company's plans include zero operational emissions vertical takeoffs and landings.

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flying object


Here's what we know about the plane so far

• The plane can carry one pilot and four passengers

• Taxis can go up to 300 km per hour at top speed

• There will be "vertical ports" linking four major areas of Dubai

• The stations will be: The new Dubai International Airport. downtown; Palm Jumeirah; and Dubai Marina.

Social media reaction

The flying taxis were met with positive reviews in Dubai and many users took to Twitter to share their excitement.

“When I was little, I used to fantasize about seeing a flying taxi so we wouldn’t wait on the busy street and stop at the traffic light afterwards,” one user wrote.

Another user said: "I used to watch cartoons and fantasy movies. I didn't think this would happen in real life!!"

Not the first and maybe not the last

This isn't the first time the flying taxi idea has been introduced to the city.

Since 2017, the United Arab Emirates has seen a series of different aircraft and companies pass through the plans.

It is usually timed for inclusion at the annual World Government Summit in Dubai, which this year featured the latest Joby plan.

Last year, China's XPeng Aeroht showed off its two-seater VTOL electric flying car in a demonstration

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