Hotelicopter on Runway
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World’s First Flying Hotel – Hotelicopter Hoax

by Brett M. Christensen

This story was first published on April 15, 2009


Message claims that attached photographs show a unique flying luxury hotel called the “Hotelicopter” that is soon to begin its first tours. 

Brief Analysis

The message was a 2009 April Fool’s joke created as a marketing campaign for a hotel search engine. Almost a decade on, versions of the hoax continue to cirulate.


The World’s First Flying Hotel

Hotelicopter 1

Hotelicopter 2

Hotelicopter 3

Hotelicopter 4

Hotelicopter 5

Hotelicopter 6

The Hotelicopter features 18 luxuriously-appointed rooms for adrenaline junkies seeking a truly unique and memorable travel experience.

Each soundproofed room is equipped with a queen-sized bed, fine linens, a mini-bar, coffee machine, wireless internet access, and all the luxurious appointments you’d expect from a flying five star hotel. Room service is available one hour after liftoff and prior to landing.” The Hotelicopter is due to fly maiden journey this summer(June 26th) with an undisclosed price…

If you are interested,There is three fly tour.

Inaugural Summer Tour – 14 days (Friday, June 26th, 2009 – Friday, July 10th, 2009)

California Tour – 14 days (Friday, July 17th, 2009 to Friday, July 24rd, 2009)
Bay/Jamaica, European Tour – 16 days (Friday, July 31st, 2009 to Sunday, August 16th, 2009)

Dimensions Length: 42 m (137 ft)
Height: 28m (91 ft)
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 105850 kg (232,870 lb)
Maximum speed: 255 km/h (137 kt) (158 miles/h)
Cruising speed: 237 km/h (127 kt) (147 miles/h)
Original Mi Range: 515 km (320 mi)
Our augmented Mi Range – 1,296 km (700 mi)


Detailed Analysis

In late March and early April 2009, stories about the “Hotelicopter” – a luxuriously appointed flying hotel – begin circulating via travel blogs and websites, social networking sites, and email. The stories included photographs of the Hotelicopter along with shots of rooms available for guests.

A video of the Hotelicopter in action was also posted to YouTube. Supposedly, the Hotelicopter’s maiden voyage was scheduled for June 2009 with other “tours” to follow. 

According to the stories, the Hotelicopter is modelled on an old Soviet Mil V-12 helicopter and features 18 luxuriously-appointed soundproof rooms complete with queen-sized beds, wireless Internet and room service.

However, the “Hotelicopter” was, in fact, an April Fools Day prank launched by a hotel search engine company. In a clever marketing ploy, the company used the prank as a promotional tool for a now-defunct hotel search engine website, An article about the prank on noted:

A company, after being in news for its “flying-hotel joke”, has launched a new brand for its hotel search engine, hotelicopter.


hotelicopter, which was previously known as VibeAgent, searches 30 travel sites in real-time, aggregating hotel room rates, availability, photos and video to instantly reveal where to find the best hotel deals. It has access to more than 65 travel partners and 150,000 hotels. owned up to the prank on its site blog:

Oh, and yes, we’re the folks behind the flying hotel of the same name. We were just having some fun, and had no idea it was going to blow up like it did – we’ve gotten about 1.5 million page and video views just in the last week – so thank you very much for all the attention and support – and hopefully we made you smile

The photographs of the supposed cabin interiors on the Hotelicopter were in fact taken from the Yotel website, apparently with Yotel’s full compliance and knowledge. Yotel offers tiny but very well appointed hotel rooms inside airports.

Almost a decade on, versions of the message continue to circulate and many recipients continue to believe its claims.

For the record, only two Mil V-12 helicopters were ever built. The first prototype was destroyed in a crash in 1969. The one remaining Mil V-12 is now displayed at the Monino air force museum in Moscow.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,