An air taxi is an exempt for-hire air carrier that will fly anywhere on demand; air taxis are restricted to a maximum payload and passenger capacity per plane.
As such it is typically a transportation service for small packages and freight. Air taxis operate in the same way as commercial airlines, but they usually have smaller planes and a more limited route network. This makes them ideal for shipping smaller items and freight within a local area or between nearby cities.
Air taxis are often used by businesses to transport goods between distribution centres, factories, and customers. They can also be helpful for last-minute shipments or when there is an urgent need to get something from one place to another quickly. Most air taxi operators will only fly to places that are relatively close by; planes generally do not have the range or speed for longer flights.
The types of goods that air taxis typically carry include:
- Cargo (freight)
- Courier packages (smaller than airline baggage, like legal documents and time-sensitive items)
- Emergency medical transportation (patients, organs or specimens)
- Medical equipment for disaster relief after hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, fires and other disasters.
- People living in remote locations or far from an airport.
Companies that use air taxis for logistical purposes include:
Their air taxis (FedEx, UPS and DHL) are also exempt for hire carriers who operate under the following restrictions:
– Maximum number of passengers – 9
– Maximum payload capacity – 7,500 pounds.
The FAA requires both pilots and co-pilots to be on board for these airlines to fly.