Domino's Could Start Delivering Pizza by Drone This Year
Dominos customers in New Zealand may soon have a new way to get their pizza delivered.
After testing a demonstration delivery via drone in Auckland on Thursday, the company is aiming to start delivering pizzas by drone starting later this year.
If successful, Dominos will become the world’s first company to offer a commercial drone delivery service.
“We’ve always said that it doesn’t make sense to have a 2-tonne machine delivering a 2-kilogram order,” said Domino's CEO Don Meij, in a statement.
For the trial, Dominos teamed up with drone startup Flirtey, the same company 7-Eleven recently used to conduct the first single commercial drone delivery, which consisted of donuts, coffee, and a chicken sandwich.
New Zealand became one of the world’s first countries to start allowing commercial drone deliveries last year, but while the country has been allowing more leeway for these types of deliveries, there are still challenges to making the plan a reality.
According to drone expert Philip Solaris of X-craft Enterprises, the company will need to overcome random hazards that could include power lines, moving vehicles, or even children playing in their yard.
“I can't truly see how commercially viable that idea is because you would have to literally have somebody walking along to keep it in the line of sight, watching it at all times,” Solaris stated in an interview with Reuters.
That being said, New Zealand’s Transport Minister Simon Bridges stated that the country's “enabling laws and regulations mean [they] have the ideal environment,” for testing this type of technology.
At the moment, Dominos is looking into conducting further drone delivery service trials in Belgium, France, Australia, Japan, Germany, and the Netherlands.
Talia Avakian is a digital reporter at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @TaliaAvak.