This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Embraer is commonly associated with regional jets operated by carriers like American, Delta and United, but its EmbraerX arm has unveiled a new flying vehicle concept. It’s a far cry from the planes we typically see on short-haul flights between locales like DC and New York, but it stands to reason that legacy airlines may diversify their business by eventually putting birds like these in their fleet.

Related: The 7 Best Starter Travel Credit Cards

The aircraft concept was unveiled at the third annual Uber Elevate conference in Washington, DC. The standout feature would be its electric vertical take-off and landing capability, known as eVTOL, which would enable it to easily (and quietly) land, pick up new passengers and depart in remarkably tight spaces.

EmbraerX-flying-vehicle-concept-uber-elevate-2019_tpg_2
EmbraerX unveiled a new electric flying vehicle concept during Uber Elevate Summit 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Brandan Dorsey/The Points Guy)

Per a company release, the unnamed craft is aiming for “operational optimization for the urban environment, considering high reliability, low operating costs, a lower noise footprint, fully electric powered and progressively autonomous.” Said another way, this machine would be better for the environment and could one day pilot itself.

EmbraerX flying vehicle concept
(Photo courtesy of EmbraerX)

While it’s just a concept at the moment, it’s not as far-fetched as it may seem at first blush. BLADE already enables consumers to hail a helicopter with an app, and ride-hailing firm Uber isn’t being coy about its intentions to include aircraft in its future vehicle selections. EmbraerX flying vehicle concept(Photo courtesy of EmbraerX)

Even if the likes of Uber and Lyft pass on utilizing urban aircraft, EmbraerX says it is developing a new business platform (dubbed Beacon) to “foster collaboration and synchronize aviation services companies and professionals in a streamlined and more agile way, to keep aircraft flying.” The company is also working with dozens of air traffic controllers, academics, pilots and industry experts to propose an “urban air space design to allow more aircraft to fly in urban environments.”

Hopefully, it’s only a matter of time before we’re able to use monthly Uber credits on The Platinum Card® from American Express (or points and miles from other programs) to catch a quick aerial lift in the city.

Featured image and additional reporting by Brendan Dorsey/The Points Guy.

Know before you go.

News and deals straight to your inbox every day.

2018 TPG Award Winner: Mid-Tier Card of the Year
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
18.24% - 25.24% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.