Planes without pilots will be cheaper, but passengers won’t get on

Pilotless planes could save airlines up to £35 billion per year, but passengers are not ready to step onto fully-autonomous flights, according to a report by Fortune[1]. A survey by UBS has shown that airlines would save £31 billion by reducing the cost of highly-skilled employees, £3 billion in training, and £1 billion in fuel if they made the switch. “The deployment of autonomous technology could result in significant fare cuts, an estimated one-tenth of the total in the US,” stated the report.

However, a survey of 8,000 air passengers showed that 54% refuse to board a remote-controlled plane – even if ticket prices were lowered. “By the middle of the century, the majority may be willing,” said UBS. The report noted that modern aircraft already employ a host of automated systems, including ones which land the plane.

Boeing recently stated it had started researching commercial passenger jets which will fly without pilots[2].

Now read: World’s first autonomous cargo ship to launch next year[3]


  1. ^ Fortune (
  2. ^ fly without pilots (
  3. ^ World’s first autonomous cargo ship to launch next year (

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