Our traffic socialisation shapes the way we think when it comes to business mobility. That’s the reason why many people initially think of cars when they hear or read about business fleets for companies. But if you take a step back and try to gain a global perspective you will spot many locations worldwide that have discovered other ways to establish their business mobility.
The oldest dream of human kind is the ability to fly – taking off into the sky only with a few simple arm movements. Admittedly, the idea sounds great. Especially employees in metropolises know the drill: getting around in cars often means ending up in nerve-wracking traffic jams.
That’s why in some larger cities helicopter traffic is getting more and more popular. And it is a very liberating feeling indeed – just hop on, take off and cross the city in merely a few minutes is a convenient way for stressed managers to get to business appointments just in time.
Role model Sao Paulo?
Let’s take a look at Sao Paulo, the helicopter capital of the world: Following Brazil’s National Aviation Agency, the number of helicopters in the city jumped from 374 to 469 between 1999 and 2008. Whereas according to the figures of the Municipal Secretary for Urban Development, the number of vehicles has more than quadrupled since 1980. It seems like ages ago that only police forces and news networks had the privilege of sky cruising. Nowadays choppers can be found everywhere and are – at least in some regions – an inherent part of business travel. This means that these cities require an adequate infrastructure: Sao Paolo, for example, has 173 helipads.
Although it is still a very expensive alternative to traditional transportation (one percent of 160 million Brazilian people can afford helicopters) fractional helicopter ownership is taking root and steady technological improvement could make helicopter traffic affordable for a wider group of people.
Maybe helicopter business travels will become so popular that even the traffic reports will have to adapt their way of informing business travellers: “Your radio traffic service here with the latest report: the air space over Sao Paulo is completely helicopterised!”
One goal, many tools: business mobility
All in all we think that a good portfolio comprising various means of transportation is key for sustainable and efficient business mobility. This portfolio includes the ‘classic’ solution like cars just as much as public transportation systems like buses, trains as well as ferry boats or bicycles for urban areas. And, of course from time to time a helicopter ride could be an option as well. Next time we’d like to take you to London, the site of the Olympic Games 2012. As you can imagine this city – even without this sportive highlight – has to cope with a lot of traffic. Those responsible have come up with a ton of creative solutions to deal with the daily onrush of travellers. Stay tuned if you want to find out more…