Frequently Asked Questions

Here is a list of frequently asked questions. Please feel free to contact us if you have a specific question not listed below. Call us on 01603 952800.

How long is the balloon flight?
The balloon flight itself lasts approximately an hour, however, you will need to allow three to four hours for the whole experience.

How high do we go?
We generally fly at heights ranging from 500ft and 3000ft.

Where do we go? Can we fly over my house?
Where we go is dependent entirely upon the direction of the wind, so it is not possible to guarantee our flight path. Each and every flight is different. The average distance we travel is 10 miles.

What should I wear?
For your safety and comfort we suggest you wear outdoor clothing suitable for the time of year. Long trousers and long sleeves are recommended. Take off sites may be wet with morning dew, therefore warm waterproof footwear is ideal. High heels must not be worn. If you are thin on top then wearing a hat will protect you from the heat of the burners. On cold days we recommend you bring a pair of gloves.

Can I give a voucher as a gift?
What could make a better present? Our vouchers can start from any date of your choice and are valid for 12 months. Vouchers can also be delivered in our Balloon in a Box presentation pack. This is a candy striped box with an 18" helium balloon inside which floats out with the voucher attached at the bottom by ribbons.

Do I have to book the flight for a specific date or location?
If you are buying a champagne balloon flight as a present you can either book the passenger onto a flight at the time of purchase or leave the flight date and launch site open, leaving the lucky recipient free to book a date and county of their choice at their convenience. Vouchers are valid for twelve months.

What happens if the weather isn't suitable?
Obviously hot air ballooning is dependent on the weather. We only fly when the conditions will be safe and enjoyable. Naturally we try to avoid wasting your time so when you book your flight date we will give you a time to call us to check that the flight is likely to go ahead. This will normally be three hours before the meeting time for an evening flight or some time the previous evening for a morning flight. If the flight has been cancelled then you will need to book another date. We know that this can be frustrating so we operate with excess capacity which means that we can usually get you booked back in within a week.

How long in advance do I need to book a flight date?
The more notice you can give us of your required date the more likely it is that we will still have availability. Please bear in mind that weekends and Bank Holidays do tend to get booked up in advance.

Where do we meet?
Full launch site directions, including maps, are sent with all flight vouchers and our office staff are happy to provide you with further instructions. Alternatively our Norwich launch site map can be downloaded here, and the Suffolk launch site map here. You will need to make your own way to the launch site. If you select Suffolk as your preferred area for a flight you will be told on the day which launch site we will be using, depending on the wind direction.

When do hot-air balloons fly?
Light winds, stable air and good visibility are the ideal conditions for ballooning. Therefore our flight times depend on sunrise and sunset, so meeting times do vary throughout the season. We do not fly in strong winds, rain or fog or if the forecast suggests it may become unsuitable. Our aim is to give everyone a pleasant, enjoyable and safe flight. If the weather prevents us flying on your chosen day, please contact us and we will arrange another day to suit you.

Is there an age limit to fly?
There is no upper age limit for flying in a balloon but a degree of agility is required. Passengers should be able to climb into the basket and stand for at least an hour. If passengers have any health problems, they are advised to contact both their doctor and our office to discuss the possibility of flying. Unaccompanied children should be at least 16 years old. If accompanied by an adult, children must be at least 7 years of age and at least 4ft 6 inches tall, so that they can see over the sides of the basket.

Can I bring a camera/video?
You are more than welcome to bring a camera, video or binoculars. The steady flight and stunning views from a balloon make it an ideal platform for aerial photography. Just remember to bring plenty of film!

Can my family and friends come to watch?
Passengers are more than welcome to bring friends and family to see them off. Those wishing to follow the balloon in their own vehicle are also welcome (this can be a great way of involving everyone in the fun). The ONLY stipulation is that all spectators must arrive at the launch site by the given meeting time for your flight and attend the comprehensive safety briefings.

What happens if my flight is cancelled?
Safety of our passengers is our priority. If we deem the weather conditions unsuitable and unsafe for flying then the flight will be cancelled. To arrange another date simply call the flight office and we will happily arrange another date.

How do I get back?
After the flight we provide transport for our passengers back to the starting point in a fully licensed and insured minibus.

Will there be other people in the basket?
Normally, yes. Our hot air balloons are specifically designed for commercial use. It is safer and more comfortable to have several people in the basket, in specially designed compartments. Our fleet consists of baskets capable of taking up to 16 passengers. We also operate smaller balloons which carry two or more passengers - ideal for an extra special occasion. Please contact us for further details.

What if I'm given a voucher and I do not want to fly?
This does occasionally happen. If for any reason you don't want to fly or are not eligible to fly then it is best to contact the office as soon as possible to discuss the available options.

How do I book?
Bookings can be taken on-line with a credit card payment via our secure payment system (on this website) or by contacting us over the telephone, by fax or by post. Our contact details can be found here.

Can I fly with a disability?
Please talk to us to discuss your level of disability. We are not currently able to offer flights for anyone who needs wheelchair access. This is because our baskets are not certified to carry them. If we are unable to help we will try to advise you as best we can and to put you in touch with someone who can fly you.

But I don't like heights!
Surprisingly, this is rarely a problem in a hot air balloon! Unlike flying in an aeroplane, there is no sensation of rising or the acceleration of a take-off. Once in the air the basket becomes extremely stable and you will experience the incredible feeling of time suspended as the world drifts quietly below.

How do I get in and out of the basket?
We have all our baskets built with convenient step-holes to make it easy for you to climb on board. Should you need assistance, our crew members are there to help.



Am I eligible to fly?

There is no upper age limit for flying in a balloon but a degree of agility and fitness are required. Passengers should be able to climb into the basket and stand for at least an hour. Depending on wind conditions and the landing site, landings can be very bumpy. For this reason expectant mothers must not fly in a balloon. Should you or any of your party become pregnant during the validity of your voucher and we will extend the validity by twelve months.

Certain medical conditions may make it very inadvisable to fly in a balloon. Examples are - bad back or knee problems, brittle bones, hip or knee replacements and any form of recent surgery. Obviously this list is not exhaustive and passengers with particular health conditions are asked to consult their doctor to discuss the possibility of flying. You should ensure that he/she is familiar with the nature of balloon landings. We would be pleased to discuss this further with your doctor. It is much easier to deal with these issues in advance rather than on the day of your flight.

The minimum age to fly in our balloons is seven and the minimum height is four feet six inches (1.37 metres). An adult must accompany children under sixteen.

Passengers with special needs or disabilities are not excluded from flying but please contact us to discuss your particular circumstances. We are not currently able to offer flights for anyone who needs wheelchair access. This is because our baskets are not certified to carry them. If we are unable to help we will try to advise you as best we can and to put you in touch with someone who can fly you.

Broadland Balloon Flights
Book your flight now on 01603 952800

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