Your Hot Air Balloon Flight

 

Get all the information you need for your flight

 

The Basics

Are You Fit for Flight?

Passengers must be in good overall health to safely enjoy all that is involved in a balloon flight.

Minimum Considerations and Requirements for All Passengers to Be Fit for Flight:
-must be at least 8-years old
-must be able to stand for 90-120 minutes (there are no seats in balloons)
-must be able to walk a couple hundred yards in uneven terrain

For more specifics, click categories below or view full Fit for Flight requirements here.

Stamina

  • Must be able to walk a couple hundred yards in uneven terrain – launch fields and especially landing fields may be: rugged, over-grown, uneven, wet, steep, slippery, have natural obstacles and/or hazards, have man made obstacles and/or hazards, far from the road, have limited or no vehicle access
  • Must be able to handle atmospheric elements and conditions of a balloon flight such as heat, humidity, cold, rapid pressure changes, wind, lower oxygen levels unforeseen weather conditions, 
 

Mobility

  • Must be able to safely handle the impact, bumps, and associated jostling on a windy landing.
  • Must be able to bend at the ankles, knees, and hips while hanging tightly with both hands for landing.
  • Must be able to climb in/out of the basket on their own (some assistance is OK). Passengers will need to have mobility and range of motion in the ankle, knee, and hip joints to board and exit the basket. There are multiple step holes (similar to a ladder) woven into the side walls off the basket to put a foot into while boarding and unloading.  Passengers will throw a leg over the side (similar motion to getting on a bike or a horse), and climb down in.    
  • Must be able to get up and down on all fours on the ground during some loading and landing scenarios.
 

Special Conditions

  • Must have a desire to go ballooning – we want you screaming to get IN the basket, not to get OUT of it. 😊 
  • Must NOT BE PREGNANT.
  • Must NOT have any injuries requiring use of canes, casts, crutches, walkers, walking boots, air casts, braces, etc (if you have qualifying disability, please contact us in advance to discuss reasonable accommodations).
  • Must NOT be under the influence of alcohol.
  • Must NOT be under the influence of drugs.
Where to Meet

We will meet at the front door of the Essex Resort and Spa at 70 Essex Way, Essex, Vermont 05452. You may click here for a map. Remember, you are looking for our flight host and our van which will be parked at the front door of the resort.

 balloon-ride-meeting-spot-70-essex-way

Some helpful tips, tricks, and dos-and-don'ts are found below:

What to Bring
  • Please bring any medication that you need or might need (asthma inhalers, Epi-pens, etc.)
  • Water is a great idea and we encourage reusable bottles 
  • Camera 
What Not to Bring
  • Backpacks or large purses (these will need to be left on the ground in the chase vehicle)
  • Big camera bags, tripods, monopods, etc.  (these will need to be left on the ground)
  • Heavy perfume or cologne  
  • Tobacco products of any kind, vape pens, or e-cigs 
  • Alcohol (we will provide champagne and non-alcoholic drinks at the conclusion of the flight)
  • Cell phones - you may bring your phone for the sole purpose of taking photos.  It is prohibited to make/receive calls, use video conference features (i.e. FaceTime, Skype, etc.), or programs like Facebook Live. 

What to Wear 

what to wear on balloon rides

The temperature in the balloon will be very similar to the temperature on the ground. We do NOT typically go to altitudes where the temperatures are a "really cold" as people may mistakenly presume.

  • Boots or Sneakers REQUIRED
  • A hat to protect head from burner heat
  • Shirt with sleeves to protect skin from burner heat
  • Layers appropriate for temperature on the ground
  • Pants recommended in case we land in tall grass. Dresses and skirts are strongly discouraged (unless you are getting married in-flight) 
  • Weddings: Feel free to wear your wedding attire, including gown, just realize that you will be wearing it on an outdoor, adventure activity where there are variables that we don't have control over (tall grass, prickers, mud, cow pies, just to name a few hazards).  Boots or sneakers are still required.

NOT Permitted:

  • Flip flops
  • High heels
  • Clogs
  • Crocs
  • Sandals of any kind

When To Meet

If you have already booked a flight, please reference your confirmation email for the time you should arrive.  The times listed below are to approximate flight times to help those people who are looking to book flights. these times change each season based on the length of day as well as how the days fall on the calendar. Exact flight times are shown on the booking calendar as you make a reservation.


Balloon flights only occur at two times of the day for safety/weather reasons.Those times are just after sunrise (VERY early but conducted during daylight hours) and a couple hours prior to sunset (late in the afternoon/evening, also conducted during daylight hours.  We do NOT fly in the dark. The actual flight times are shown on our booking calendar.  


Meeting times / Flight windows are:
 1. Just after sunrise - These times range between 5:00AM and 6:30AM.
2. In the few hours preceding sunset - these times range between 2:45PM and 5:30PM.

After you make your reservation you will receive a confirmation email that specifies your meeting time. If you are looking for specific time that the flights meet, please consult the table below.


essex-burlington-hot-air-balloons


The entire balloon ride experience (from meeting time through post flight champagne celebration) will last approximately three and a half hours.  Approximate meeting times for flights are shown below - separated by month.  Please note that these times are approximate and if you already have a flight scheduled you should NOT go by these times as they may be off by 15 minutes or more from your actual meeting time. 

May

June

July 

August

September

October


The Post Flight Celebration!

best Vermont foliage tour

All flights conclude with truffles from Birnn Chocolates of Vermont,  traditional champagne toast or sparkling cider, or orange juice.

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