Joby and Skyports to Launch Air Taxi Services in Dubai by 2025
Key Highlights: Joby Aviation and Skyports Infrastructure have teamed up to introduce air taxi services in Dubai as early as 2025. Through exclusive agreements with Dubai’s Road and Transport Authority (RTA), Joby gains a six-year period of exclusivity to operate air taxis in the emirate, while Skyports will have the exclusive rights to build and operate vertiports. Joby plans to launch services in Dubai in early 2026, with initial operations targeted for 2025. US certification of its four-passenger electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicle is expected in 2025.
The agreement with the RTA suggests a state-subsidised operation, with the RTA providing financial mechanisms to support the entry and maturing of service operations in Dubai. To facilitate the operation, an initial network of four vertiports will be constructed, including locations such as Dubai International airport, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Downtown, and Dubai Marina. A newly established Joby subsidiary in Dubai will operate the aircraft and consider localizing other global business activities in Dubai and across the region.
Additionally, Skyports has stated that Joby will manufacture the eVTOL aircraft in Dubai, hinting at potential economic benefits for the emirate. However, details on the specific operations Joby might set up in Dubai remain undisclosed. The new pact raises questions about a previous agreement between the government of the United Arab Emirates and eVTOL rival Archer Aviation, which had plans to launch services across the UAE from 2026, including an air corridor linking Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
Separately, Joby recently announced that the US Federal Aviation Administration had accepted the type certification plan for its aircraft’s electrical propulsion system, marking a significant milestone in the path towards launching air taxi services in Dubai.
Overall, the collaboration between Joby Aviation and Skyports Infrastructure holds promise for the future of air transportation in Dubai, with potential economic and technological advancements on the horizon.