If The Sims 2: Apartment Life is not installed, it only appears on residential lots as the carpool for the top-level jobs in the Business, Military, Politics, Show Business, or Paranormal careers. The Military helicopter is green and has military icons on it. In the other jobs, the helicopter is mostly white, with a light green stripe and a dark green underside. Because of the space its rotor takes up, a helicopter serving as a carpool cannot land in the normal carpool space. Instead, it occupies space normally used by service NPCs' vehicles. A helicopter serving as a carpool cannot land if more than one service vehicle is parked on the street; on smaller lots, even one service vehicle may keep it from landing. Because of this, a Sim who uses a helicopter as the carpool may not be able to return home until the service Sims have left. Also, service vehicles such as delivery vehicles can block a helicopter serving as a carpool from arriving.
With Apartment Life installed, a Sim can buy a Pearson 206 SimRanger as a private vehicle. They will also need to buy the Get to The Choppa helipad, which costs an extra §1200, so the helicopter will have a place to land. The helipad is available from the Driveways section of Build mode, and has a 15x12 footprint. It can be placed in any flat area that is large enough to hold it, and can even be put on a flat roof. When parked on a helipad, the helicopter mostly works the same way as a car. Sims can even WooHoo in the helicopter, as they can in a car.
In The Sims 2: Bon Voyage, Sims on vacation can take helicopter tours.
Helicopters are very loud, and Sims will often react to the noise by covering their ears.