Mind Blown: There Were Helicopter Airlines In The 1960s And They Were Going To Be The Future (They Weren’t)


Mind Blown: There Were Helicopter Airlines In The 1960s And They Were Going To Be The Future (They Weren’t)

This is the type of stuff we truly love to find. When you run into something that happened or some weird trend that was being pushed as the future which died out and you never knew it existed, the rabbit hole opens right up. In this case, we’re talking about Helicopter Airlines which sprang up in the 1950s and early 1960s in large cities to shuttle passengers between airports or between airports and heliports close to their final destinations. The majority of them were out of business by the middle 1970s with a scant few hanging on until the 1980s but frankly we had never heard of them in the first place and this video paints a pretty boss picture of the whole scene, but that’s because of who made it.

Sikorsky Helicopter Company.

Obviously if they championed this idea of mass-transit helicopter style they’d be in perfect position to take advantage. Hell, look at the behemoths they were already building to carry people, cargo, mail, and whatever else.

There is one mention that the helicopter flight could be made for less than the price of a taxi and that seems completely insane. Maybe for less than the price of BUYING the taxi from the guy driving it, but certainly the fare for a helicopter ride blew the taxi money into the weeds.

Conceptually we like where their heads were at. You can tell the clientele even 60 years ago was very upscale and certainly not hurting for dough. Freaking Dr. Mayo is shown in the film!

This is an awesome picture of a future that never came. When they show the scope and size of some of these helicopter airlines we were blown away. What cool history!

Press play below to see this awesome 1960s film about helicopter airlines –


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One thought on “Mind Blown: There Were Helicopter Airlines In The 1960s And They Were Going To Be The Future (They Weren’t)

  1. Gary D

    Interesting video but I will disagree with some of Lohnes’ comments. Back in the day, most all people who flew were dressed formally. In fact, people who traveled, no matter the mode, were dressed up for any occasion. You can even see this from old movies of baseball games where everyone was dressed, wore hats and ties, etc. A different time. This video says cost was “down to 8 cents a seat mile” for chopper travel. That would be 12 miles for a dollar. Not sure what taxi prices were back then but maybe not as grossly out of line as Lohnes implies.
    The real shocker was the reminder of just how bad the air quality was in LA back then. We tend to forget how much progress has been made.
    Cannot ague with the convenience attraction either – there is a reason that the Bidens, Trumps, Oprahs, LeBrons and all the others who won’t endure traffic like us commoners travel by helo.

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