A showcase for Brazilian tourism within the country and around the world, Rio de Janeiro is used to being an attraction for all types of tourists. Aware of the demands of the wealthier portion of these visitors, Rio’s executive aviation has gained momentum over time. One of the main markets in Brazil today, air taxi in Rio de Janeiro is capable of responding to the most complex operations in the sector. All this while flying, by private plane or helicopter, over one of the most beautiful cities on the planet.
According to the National Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC), Rio de Janeiro is the Brazilian city with the largest number of companies authorized to operate in air taxi – even more than São Paulo, owner of the largest fleet of private aircraft in the country. There are 13 companies with hangars at addresses in the city of Rio de Janeiro, against 11 operators in São Paulo. With so many options available, it’s a good idea to have the help of those who know the business before making a reservation. Therefore, in this article Flapper gathers essential details for the future air taxi passenger in Rio de Janeiro.
Airports and Helipads
Galeão (GIG, SBGL), Santos Dumont (SDU, SBRJ) and Jacarepaguá (RRJ, SBJR) are the three airports in Rio de Janeiro that operate air taxi takeoffs and landings. Well structured and approved to receive almost all categories of aircraft in executive aviation, the big difference between them is their location – Santos Dumont being the most centralized airport of all.
For those traveling by helicopter, the three airports follow as options, being able to carry out day and night operations. In addition to them, in the city of Rio de Janeiro it is also possible to land on the helipads of Lagoa (SDRJ), in the South, and Recreio (SDRE), in the West.
Home to so many air taxi companies, Rio de Janeiro is able to meet the needs of the most demanding customers. Even if the budget is constrained, there are options for helicopters and aircraft. If the distance is too long, there are modern jets capable of comfortably connecting Cariocas to international destinations. The options are many and, below, we list some models that are worth mentioning.
Robinson R44 II – The most economical helicopter of the air taxi, the R44 is ideal for short transfers within the state of Rio de Janeiro. It can hold a couple and their luggage for a weekend – in addition to providing, with its large windows, practically panoramic flights.
Esquilo AS350 – Also suitable for short trips, the Esquilo is spacious and can carry up to 5 passengers. The best-selling helicopter in the world, the AS350, earns points for the trunk, capable of carrying 3 medium bags (or 5 hand bags).
Citation Sovereign – One of the most versatile options among midsize jets, the Sovereign can carry up to 8 passengers and can make landings on short runways (ideal for less structured airports). With an autonomy of over 4,500 km, the aircraft flies nonstop to any point in Brazil and South America.
Gulfstream 450 – The powerful American ultra long range transports 14 to 16 passengers with impeccable efficiency, comfort, and style. On board the G450, cariocas can make direct flights to all of Latin America and even to destinations in the United States, such as Orlando and Miami.
Who and when
The air taxi sector in Rio de Janeiro has a seasonality that follows the calendar of national holidays. Leisure trips, especially with a couple or family, tend to be more popular during the summer – with special demand at the end of the year and Carnival parties. Even so, holidays such as Holy Week (1st semester), Corpus Christi (June) and the Proclamation of the Republic (November 15th) also generate great movement in the capital of Rio de Janeiro.
Another modality that has weight in Rio de Janeiro is business travel. Having the city as its origin or destination, and involving large groups or solo travelers, this type of operation is crucial for the health of the sector. This is because, unlike leisure tourism, corporate travel does not have a well-defined seasonality and takes place throughout the year.
Angra dos Reis
Just over 100 kilometers from Rio de Janeiro, Angra dos Reis is one of the favorite destinations for weekend getaways for Cariocas. In addition to being beautiful, the route aboard a helicopter takes no more than 60 minutes.
Model: Robinson R44 II
Flight time: 60 minutes
Value: R$ 5,190
Located in Sepetiba Bay, Mangaratiba is one of the destinations sought by Cariocas for quick trips on weekends and holidays. The facilities are even greater for those staying at the Portobello Resort, which has its own helipad.
Model: Bell 407 GXP
Flight time: 27 minutes
Value: R$ 8,060
One of the most charming destinations on the Fluminense coast, Armação dos Búzios is known for its 23 beaches and sophisticated cuisine. Located in the north of Rio de Janeiro, this is a trip recommended to be made by helicopter.
Model: Airbus AS350 B2
Flight time: 48 minutes
Value: R$ 10,140
Gateway to Northeastern Brazil, the first capital of Brazil is an established destination for family vacations during the summer. All the cultural richness of Bahia is less than a 3-hour flight from Rio de Janeiro.
Model: Citation Sovereign
Flight time: 131 minutes
Aboard the efficient ultra long range aircraft, Miami is so close that, when departing Rio de Janeiro, the impression is of flying on an airlift. The darling of Brazilians in Florida is less than an 8-hour flight from the capital of Rio de Janeiro.
Model: Gulfstream G450
Flight time: 457 minutes
Value: R$ 757,110
Empty legs are repositioning flights in which an empty aircraft returns to its base or travels to a destination for future operation. As last minute opportunities, Flapper offers such flights with discounts of 40% to 70% in relation to the original prices. As a great center of national executive aviation, Rio de Janeiro is often the origin or destination of Empty Legs – almost weekly, the São Paulo/Rio de Janeiro connection is made available on the platform. That’s why it’s always good to stay connected to the Empty Legs tab of the Flapper portal or app.
Whatever the reason for your next trip, we have the right aircraft to transport you. Through Flapper’s app and website, the user has access to instantaneous quotes for charters, and can define the embarkation and disembarkation locations, the date and time of operation, and the type of aircraft or helicopter used.
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