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faq

About         Our Crew         Flights & Pricing         FAQ

RESERVATIONS 

Reservations are paid in full by cash, check, credit card (with an additional 3.7% convenience charge) or redeeming your Gift Certificate.

 

GIFT CERTIFICATES 

G.C.s are paid in full by cash, check, or credit card with an additional 3.7% convenience charge.  G.C.s never expire and are transferable with a notice from the “named” recipient on the certificate.

 

HOW MANY PASSENGERS CAN BE FLOWN AT ONE TIME? 

The answer to this question is three other questions!  1. How big is the balloon? 2. How heavy are the passengers?  & 3. How much space will the passengers take up in the basket?  Our balloon can carry up to four passengers plus the pilot depending on passenger weight and size.  If your party is more than four individuals, we will invite another balloonist to help us out.

 

PASSENGER RESTRICTIONS 

Balloon flight is something to be Xperienced by everyone. However, infants and most young children do not appreciate the “magic” of balloon flight.  Individuals will need the ability to climb into the basket, stand for an hour and help with light physical tasks (if you desire). If you have recently had broken bones, surgery, are pregnant or have medical issues you may want to check with your physician before scheduling or participating.

 

PASSENGER WEIGHT

Balloons are lifting machines but have weight restrictions as do all aircraft. We would like to know if your weight is above 200lbs so we can balance the load. 

 

CANCELLATIONS BY PASSENGER

If you cancel a scheduled flight, please do so at least 24 hours in advance. (see Last Minute Cancelations/No-Shows)

LAST MINUTE CANCELLATIONS/NO-SHOWS

Expenses are incurred once SBX crew and equipment are in motion for an expected flight. If cancellation notice is received after we are in route or passengers fail to show up with no notification, we reserve the right to retain the flight/G.C. fee as service rendered-flight flown; or charge a rescheduling fee based on the expenses incurred.

 

CANCELLATION BY SBX

Picking the correct conditions in which to fly are key to a great Xperience. Conditions that might cause SBX to cancel a flight are winds that are forecast to be too high, rain and or thunderstorms, snow making the roads hard to navigate for the chase crew, extreme heat and cold, and FAA Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFR's) for dignitaries and large group events.  Cloudy skies are not a reason to cancel.

 

Forecasts and FAA Briefers are consulted prior to asking passengers to travel to the launch/meeting site.  Unfortunately, the weather is subject to change. Consequently, even if you have been asked to travel to the launch/meeting site, the final decision to fly or not is made by the pilot at the launch site. This is for everyone’s safety.

 

RESCHEDULING

Contact us as soon as convenient if your flight is cancelled.

 

WHAT TIMES ARE FLIGHTS AVAILABLE? 

Flights are scheduled at sunrise and prior to sunset.  The winds are most favorable at these times of the day.

 

WAIVER  

All flight activities have inherent risks and dangers.  Insurance underwriters require all passengers to sign a waiver in advance of a flight. View and print the waiver here.

 

HOW MUCH TIME SHOULD I ALLOW FOR THIS XPERIENCE? 

Expect to be busy with an Xperience for about 3 hours. The actual flight time will be on either side of an hour. Prior to the flight we will assemble and inflate the balloon. After the flight we will deflate, pack up and transport you, the crew and balloon system back to our meeting site.

 

HOW HIGH, FAST, FAR AND IN WHAT DIRECTION WILL WE FLY? 

In the Montgomery County area, legal balloon flight is from 500ft. to 3,500ft.  Most flights usually top out at about 2,000 ft.

Balloons are propelled by the wind, so we will travel in the direction and speed of the winds at that time. Ground winds above 8-10 MPH are generally considered strong to unsafe.  An average flight may cover 6 to 12 miles. The direction and distance flown are both variables and cannot be promised in advance.  The landing site is determined by the pilot based on weather conditions and landing site availability.

 

HOW DO WE RETURN TO THE LAUNCH SITE? 

The ground/chase crew will bring the passengers, pilot, and balloon system back to the launch site.  These volunteers follow the balloon with the vehicle and trailer and are in contact with the balloon via radio. The ground crew will meet the balloon at the landing site contact the landowners and help to pack up the balloon.

 

TIPPING THE CREW

The crew volunteers their time to help with our flights.  There are “perks” to crewing on a hot air balloon team but they would greatly appreciate any “thank you” you offer them.

 

HOW SHOULD I DRESS

Dress for an outdoor activity: loose comfortable clothing with sturdy footwear. You might want to wear waterproof shoes if you are participating on a morning flight - sometimes the dew can be heavy. The temperature up in the balloon basket will be about the same as on the ground. No heeled shoes or sandals.  Sturdy sneakers or light hikers with jeans are highly recommended. You may want some type of hat if you are tall.

 

WHAT TO BRING

Please bring your signed waiver, the PDF file can be found on the website sportballooningxp.com. Bring your camera and maybe sunglasses!

 

NO SMOKING / NO ALCOHOL

SMOKING IS NOT PERMITTED NEAR THE BALLOON OR IN THE BASKET.  FAA regulations do not permit alcoholic beverages on board.  Passengers showing signs of intoxication will not be allowed to board the balloon, again by FAA Regulation.