Watch: When I 'flew' over Dubai's iconic landmarks in RTA's air taxi

The sleek, futuristic capsule was modern yet minimalist, with panoramic windows stretching from the floor to the ceiling, offering breathtaking views of the cityscape below

by

Nandini Sircar

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Visitors experience the simulation at RTA stand in COP28. Photo by Shihab
Visitors experience the simulation at RTA stand in COP28. Photo by Shihab

Published: Tue 12 Dec 2023, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Tue 12 Dec 2023, 9:09 PM

Picture yourself sitting comfortably inside an air taxi soaring through the skies of Dubai. I recently had the opportunity to virtually experience a flight in one, courtesy of the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), during their simulation at COP 28.

As I wore my VR headset and geared up for the simulation at the Innovation and Technology Hub RTA stand on Monday, I realised the imaginary cabin was seemingly quiet except for a slight hum as the taxi’s electric motors powered up.

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The sleek, futuristic capsule was modern yet minimalist, with panoramic windows stretching from the floor to the ceiling, offering breathtaking views of the cityscape below.

Soft ambient lighting enhances the calming atmosphere within the cabin. I glanced around and noticed a front panel displaying the flight path, estimated arrival time, and various points of interest along the way. Watch me experience the RTA air taxi below:

As I initiated the takeoff through the virtual control systems, I experienced a subtle sensation of ascent, accompanied by mild dizziness—taking a moment to adapt to the simulated change in altitude, all while being aware it was a virtual experience.

The vehicle then glided smoothly into the air, offering me an incredible bird’s-eye view of Dubai’s iconic landmarks. My futuristic vehicle glided past the Dubai Frame, then the Burj Khalifa, which stands tall amidst a cluster of skyscrapers. The air taxi then soared over Palm Jumeirah, the artificial archipelago resembling a palm tree, glistening in the distance.

RTA stand in COP28. Photo by Shihab
RTA stand in COP28. Photo by Shihab

Catching the sunlight and reflecting a mesmerising glow, I zoomed past the world’s tallest and largest observation wheel, the Ain Dubai over Bluewaters Island.

Beneath me, the city sprawled in an attractive blend of modern architecture and desert landscapes. The azure waters of the Arabian Gulf contrast beautifully with the golden hues of the surrounding sand.

The air taxi cruised effortlessly guided by advanced autonomous technology. Meanwhile, I immersed myself in this captivating aerial journey, marvelling at the innovation that defines Dubai.

simulation at RTA stand in COP28. Photo by Shihab
simulation at RTA stand in COP28. Photo by Shihab

As the taxi began its descent towards my destination, I felt a sense of awe at the seamless fusion of technology and the beauty of Dubai from high above.

This virtual tour left me with unforgettable memories of a modern marvel, eagerly anticipating the real-life experience that will soon grace the skies of Dubai.

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