Pies From the Sky: ‘Pizza-by-Drone’ Coming to Domino’s Customers in New Zealand
Pizza lovers and UAS enthusiasts are abuzz with the news that some Domino’s customers in New Zealand will soon receive their deliveries by drone.
Domino’s Pizza Enterprises and Flirtey , a UAS delivery service, announced last week that they have partnered on the first pizza-by-drone delivery model. They said they chose New Zealand as the launch market because of its regulatory environment.
The companies demonstrated an aerial delivery of a hot Domino’s pizza in Auckland, New Zealand, on August 25. They plan to start sending unmanned flights to customer homes from a select Domino’s store later this year, in a pilot project approved by regulators.
Matt Sweeny, CEO of Flirtey, said the company is “uniquely positioned to bring the same revolutionary Flirtey drone delivery service to partners within the United States” under the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) new small UAS rule—which took effect August 29.
The FAA’s rule currently bars interstate transport of goods by drone, but delivering within a state is permitted. That should clear the way for enterprising pizza consumers to receive their pizza from the air. However, under the current rule beyond line of sight operations and operations over people still are not permitted, which means that drone pizzas will likely remain a niche product until the FAA adopts additional regulations later this year and next.
No word yet on whether the pizza drones will expect tips, or deliver to New Zealand’s famous hobbit holes.