Above the traffic jams

Ever wanted to float above Moscow's notorious traffic problems? A private helicopter service conveniently close to a metro can help you fulfill your dreams.

All photos by TASS Photo

Despite the existing ban on flights within the Moscow Ring Road (MKAD), there are plenty of helicopter service enthusiasts. The landing pad of the First Moscow Heliport – close to the Crocus City exhibition complex, just 500 meters from the MKAD and a three-minute walk from Myakinino Metro station – is happy to accommodate clients who are not put off by the ticket prices: 10,000 rubles ($400) for a 20-minute flight. You can take off and land even close to your country house. All you need is a 35m by 35m field nearby.

For the time being the service is restricted to just the business class, and a modest private fleet of 15 helicopters suffices to meet demand. The most visited destinations are also quite indicative: flights to Moscow airports (Domodedovo, Sheremetyevo and Vnukovo), flights around private property, visits to golf and yacht clubs, and hunting trips top the list. Even in Moscow, there are hardly any clients wishing simply to “take a girl for a ride.” There are, however, plenty of requests for excursions to the New Jerusalem Monastery or Sergiyev Posad, since some helicopters can carry up to 13 people, thus significantly lowering the cost.

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