Flytrex Expands Drone Food Delivery Services

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Drone delivery company Flytrex announced on Thursday that it has expanded its offerings in Holly Springs, North Carolina, through a partnership with national sandwich chain Jersey Mike’s Subs. As previously reported by AVweb, Flytrex received FAA approval for a delivery area covering a 1-nautical-mile radius from all of its operating stations in North Carolina last December. According to the company, its drones typically travel at around 32 MPH, allowing deliveries to arrive in under five minutes.

“We’re excited to team up with Jersey Mike’s to deliver subs throughout the skies of North Carolina and look forward to expanding our partnership everywhere they deliver their delicious food,” said Flytrex CEO and co-founder Yariv Bash. “Drone delivery is accelerating quicker than anyone could have anticipated, and we are thrilled to be at the forefront of that movement—using our technology to ensure retailers and restaurants can stay ahead of the ultrafast delivery curve.”

Flytrex operates its order-by-app food and retail delivery service in partnership with Causey Aviation Unmanned. The company has been making deliveries by drone in North Carolina since September 2020 and currently has locations in Fayetteville, Raeford and Holly Springs along with a recently opened a station in Granbury, Texas. Flytrex says its service area now covers “10,000 homes across North Carolina and Texas” with “thousands of drone deliveries” completed.

Kate O’Connor works as AVweb's Editor-in-Chief. She is a private pilot, certificated aircraft dispatcher, and graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

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35 COMMENTS

  1. Hmm… In the spirit of supporting aviation of course, and with both a Jersey Mike’s and Dutch Bros within the one nautical mile delivery area from my home, I hope Flytrex will expand soon to AZ.
    Then, after they load up a Big Kahuna sub at Mike’s, maybe they could swing over to Bros and pick up an iced Cocomo to wash the vile decadence down, saving me a double delivery charge!

    ‘Filling the skies with thousands of drone deliveries’ actually could help block the sun and keep skin cancer cases down, not to mention the white noise in the evening deliveries might remind the many Midwest transplants of the crickets and cicadas they so miss from their forgotten porches. One can hope…

  2. Leaving all the clever, and highly entertaining sarcasm behind for just a moment, one wonders how this will look as competition increases. Do these drones have any means of seeing and avoiding other drones? How long before we see the first armed food drones? Will armed Chic Filet drone shoot down Jersey Mike’s drone, in defense of their routes? How long before the FAA mandates fire retardant mayonaise? And, as competition increases and cost pressures mount, how long before all you can get delivered is a packet of Blue Diamond Almonds?

  3. So people used to brag about mosquitoes the size of birds in describing the pestilence in warm tropical locales. So now we will get them en masse in all of our climates and year round. Can’t wait.

  4. When I was a kid in the 50’s, tossing TP around someone’s house or ringing a doorbell and running was risqué. That turned into porch pirates. NOW, I predict kids will be ordering sandwiches and ‘nabbing’ the drone to hold them hostage. It’ll be GREAT fun. Mark my words …

    • 360 degree camera recording along with making recipient liable for theft or damage will put a crimp in that thinking.

      Just think what this will do for the illicit drug selling community. Gone are the days hanging out on a corner worrying that the PoPo will bust you’re cap. Nope, sellers can snapchat a location for a buyer, send out a drone, drop package, and hi-tail it back to drug central.

      Drones, the new, cheap, and exciting way to screw up humanity.

      Now a smart fast food franchise would set up at an airport, buy a couple of C152 beaters and do parachute drops for rural areas while buzzing the suburban homes with drones. I live on a farm, way too far for drones, too long for auto, but having my Jersey Mike’s dropped by chute into the backyard….perfection. Plug an autopilot into the planes and call them drones with passengers so they can fly low enough for accurate drops.

      The sky’s the limit.

  5. As a pilot who lives less than four miles from this establishment and flies a helicopter based seven miles from it, I am NOT “thrilled to be at the forefront of that movement”.

    Every in-flight promotional photo of this “breakthrough” indicates that it flies around 500 feet AGL. I too spend a lot of time at that altitude, and given their size, there is little possibility that I will be able to “see and avoid” these moving aerial mines.

    Their website assures me that they have “a team of FAA-certified drone operators overseeing each mission and ensuring a seamless delivery”. (Every reference to “safety” refers to that of the drone or its cargo; nothing mentions aircraft.)

    They say, “We work closely with the FAA, DOT, and other industry partners to safely and surely advance commercial drones into the National Airspace System.” They assure me that the drone has an “autonomous parachute” to protect the drone, of course.

    There is a “flight termination system”, but it’s not clear if it is autonomous or relies on the operator. It the latter, the hilly terrain would make continuous monitoring difficult. There is a large active landfill nearby that might provide such a vantage point, but I’ve seen no indication that there is any sort of observation post atop it. It would not be a pleasant duty-station.

    Finally, they assert that “we adhere to all latest regulations”, but given the nascent state of such regulations wending their way through the FAA bureaucracy, that gives me little comfort. At the moment, the proposed regs put the “see & avoid” onus on the aircraft, not the sandwich-delivering drone.

    Only in a war-zone does a tiny projectile have the right-of-way over a human-carrying aircraft.

  6. What’s weird is how many ways humanity seems to be destroying itself and the planet. Aside from the novelty of, let me get this right, having a sandwich delivered in the same amount of time it would take for you to simply make your own, or heat up a frozen premade one, you can spend twice or three times the amount to have one flown to you….But only if you live at a deliverable site. Apartment dwellers will have to what? open a window and have the drone hover or fly into the apartment? What about inclement weather? Won’t your french fries get cold and soggy? Progress is only a direction, there is nothing to say it’s a smart choice.

    • Baby steps first, Rich. Warmers, refrigeration, coordinated gimbals, Apt. window cannon-chutes – are without doubt being considered as we speak. And Starbucks has proven people can’t even make a cup of coffee, let alone a complex item like a sandwich…

    • Delivery of sandwiches and other prepared food to your door is already happening. Check out DoorDash, Uber Eats, GrubHub, etc. They deliver by car. People are using them.
      Whether drone delivery is feasible, is another matter.

  7. Can we PLEASE now take down all that silly security fencing at airport and all those TFRs?
    Obviously light aircraft are no longer a security risk when any disgruntled fry cook can now put 5 pounds of anything precisely into any point in the city with zero chance of intercept?

  8. Hummmm,

    Here we have two current articles on AvWeb, at the core discussing rules.

    Here’s a comment on the Red Bull article:

    “Whether the rules are “right” or not is irrelevant–they exist and we’re bound by them.”

    These drone operators, like it or not, are following the rules. Whether the rules are “right” or not is irrelevant-they exist and we’re bound by them.

    How is it that with one article, rules are to be followed without question, and in this article, proper operation and following the rules is frowned upon?

  9. Whatever happened to Flirtey?

    “Mesa is excited to partner with Flirtey to become the first scheduled airline to launch drone delivery in the U.S.,” said Mesa Chairman and CEO Jonathan Ornstein. “Drone delivery is a huge market and it’s here now. This is the future of small package last mile delivery.”

    Flirtey has previously partnered with organizations and companies including NASA, Johns Hopkins University of Medicine, Remote Area Medical, New Zealand Land Search & Rescue, Domino’s and 7-Eleven. The company reports that it has conducted over 6,000 drone delivery flights to in the U.S. to date. Regional air carrier Mesa currently operates approximately 450 flights a day across the country.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ml0ke023JHU