Per-seat helicopter booking service Blade is expanding into the Los Angeles metro market, with service between downtown and the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Westside, Orange County, and Burbank, the company announced late last week. Blade said flights to downtown Los Angeles will be scheduled for hockey and basketball games, marquee concerts, and other events at the Staples Center. Prices begin at $195 per passenger. Blade’s L.A. operations use Airbus H130s and will follow noise abatement routes, altitudes, and best practices, the company said.
"The H130 is the perfect aircraft for this type of mission thanks to its comfort, efficiency, and environmental standards, as it's the quietest in its class," said Romain Trapp, president of Airbus Helicopters, Inc. Airbus Helicopters is an investor in Blade.
"Since expanding our continuous flight service in Manhattan and San Francisco, we are seeing faster-than-expected adoption by people choosing to fly rather than drive," said Blade West Coast general manager Shivani Parikh. “Los Angeles is at the forefront of embracing multi-modality transportation options.”
Similar to Blade service at New York’s JFK airport, Los Angeles customers can opt to be escorted on the tarmac from the helicopter to their American Airlines flight (and vice versa) with that carrier’s Five Star Service, which can be purchased via the Blade app or website by choosing "American add-on."