Plantation, Florida: April 28, 2015: Starting today, helicopters won’t just be used to report on Chicago’s notorious traffic gridlock; they’ll actually help get international shippers through it. DHL, the world’s leading international express services provider, launched its helicopter service in Chicago to provide early morning delivery services for the area’s financial and legal firms requiring urgent document delivery.

“We have received tremendous customer feedback on our helicopter service in both New York and L.A., so it seemed natural that we would bring this innovative delivery method to Chicago, which also is a bustling financial epicenter,” said Mike Parra, CEO of DHL Express U.S. “While we have always excelled at making deliveries with speed and reliability, our helicopter service provides additional assurance that shipments will meet their early morning deadlines.”

DHL Express is the only express delivery company in the U.S. to utilize helicopters for deliveries and introduced the helicopter into its Chicago operation to guarantee early morning delivery service, regardless of traffic bottlenecks. The service will be used by many globally-recognized financial and professional services customers. 

International shipments destined for Chicago enter the U.S. for processing at the DHL Americas Hub in Cincinnati before connecting to a flight bound for the Chicago O’Hare International Airport. Shipments are then separated, loaded into the DHL helicopter and transported to the new Vertiport Chicago in the Illinois Medical District. From there, a DHL courier meets the helicopter and provides the final mile delivery. 

The DHL helicopter, a Bell 206B3 Jet Ranger, is operated for DHL by Helimotion of Joliet, Illinois, and can transport up to 650 pounds of letters and packages.

DHL introduced a helicopter service in Los Angeles in 2014 and has been using the service in New York for many years. In addition, a new helicopter service was launched in January in London, UK. The London helicopter enables DHL to offer an enhanced next-day service into the UK capital from major U.S. East Coast cities. With a direct connection from London’s Heathrow Airport to the city’s financial district, DHL can now guarantee overnight delivery of urgent documents for financial and legal shippers in Boston, Chicago and New York.