FAQ´s : frequently asked questions

Do we have vertigo in balloon ?

No, because there is no physical link between the balloon and the ground, there is no feeling of dizziness or vertigo. During the flight the basket remains stable and there is a feeling of incredible ease during the take-off.

How big is a balloon ?

The most popular model, the 2.200 m3, has a diameter of 17 m, a height of 23 m. This is comparable to a 6-floor building.

How much is a balloon?

Average price for buying is 30.000€. A balloon prepared for passengers flights can reach the price of 70.000€, depending on the complexity of the construction.

Who manufacture a hot-air balloon?

For commercial and sporting use, the most famous balloon manufacturers are : in Spain, Ultramagic, In the UK Cameron Balloons, In France, Chaize, in Germany Schroeder Fire Balloons, In the Czech Republic Kubicek Balloons and in the US Sky Balloons, etc.

Some hot-air balloon passionate persons make by themselves their own balloons. The Civilian Aviation Authority and the Associations of Amateur Makers controlled their constructions and their use. This activity is growing fast due to its financial and personal benefits.

How long is the balloon life ?

With an appropriate and regular care, the envelope can last between 5 and 20 years, or approximately 500 hours of effective flight. The burner and the basket can last longer when well cared.

What fuel is used to heat the balloon ?

PROPANE is the most common gas used for that purpose. Small aerostats carry an average of 80 kilos of gas contained in 3 or 4 cylinders.

Do we need a licence to pilot a balloon ?

Hot-air balloons, as planes, are regulated by the Civilian Aviation Authority. It is necessary to obtain a “hot-air balloon pilot licence”, by practicing with an instructor, by passing a theorical exam on air rules, meteorology, radio-communication and balloon equipment, by passing a medical exam.

When can balloon fly ?

Ballooning is possible all year long in Catalonia, winter included, thanks to a Mediterranean climate favourable to aerostation. It is a fact, flying during the winter offer more advantages : reducing the gas consumption and flying longer thanks to smoother meteo.

What is the best moment of the day to fly in ballon ?

The morning. The climate is usually fresh and winds are stable. Balloons cannot fly during the middle of the journey because of thermicals and turbulences caused by the warming sun.

What are the limit for flying ?

We do not fly in strong winds (more than 10 knots), rain or fog or if the forecast suggests it may become unsuitable. Our aim is to give everyone a pleasant, enjoyable and safe flight.

How many people are necessary to inflate the balloon ?

A team of 3-4 persons are suitable. The inflation lasts around 30 minutes.

How many persons can go up in a balloon ?

The most common model can welcome 1 pilot and 2 passengers. But the ones made for group flights have a bigger capacity: between 4 and 10 passengers. More than 32 passengers can fly in the biggest hot-air balloons ever made !

How do we control the direction ?

The only possible action for a hot-air balloon pilot is to heat the balloon to make it ascent or to let it cool down which cause the descent of the balloon. The horizontal direction is controled by the winds. Indeed, depending on the altitude the pilot will find different winds going in different directions and at different speed. It is thus the pilot experience to identify and handle with the winds that will make possible the hot-air balloon navigation. Good knowledges of aerology is a key-success for a good flight.

Is it cold up there ?

Not much colder than on the ground, during a passengers’ flight. Temperature decreases 1°C every 200 meters but the lost of temperature is not as important at the altitude reached during a normal passengers’ flight. During the winter flights, the burner acts as a heater. Yet, we advise to wear a jersey while the inflating phases of the balloon and after the landing.

Can we sit in the basket during the flight?

No, all passengers should stand for the duration of the flight and have bent knees for the landing. They can admire the panorama.

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).

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