Balloon ride over Michigan by Balloon Quest Inc Capt Phogg Balloon Rides

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Common Questions
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What kind of weather do balloons need?

This is the most important requirement of any balloon flight, great weather with very light winds. Balloons require winds under 9 mph and surface winds and winds aloft are both important. Visibility needs to be at least 3 miles with no storms or approaching bad weather. Balloons are very sensitive to the weather and we will not take chances with safety.

How fast do you go?

We fly exactly with the winds, the same direction and speed as the wind, An average flight distance depends on wind speed, Ideally, we like about a 5 or 6 mph breeze. We do not want too little or too much wind.

How do you steer the balloon?

We fly exactly with the winds, the same direction and speed as the wind, changing altitude may change direction, but we will still go where the winds take us. We have great control of altitude but direction is up to the wind, thats why location is so important and our location is great. Our chase team will take us from our landing location back to our showroom to complete the adventure.

What makes the balloon rise?

Hot Air heated by propane burners make us fly! High powered burners ignite liquid propane that is aimed to send the heat into the balloon to make it rise. The burners create up to 40 million BTU's. Each flight uses approximately 75 to 300 pounds of propane.

How high do balloons fly?

Most balloon flights will be between 500 to 5000 feet of altitude, it is so smooth you feel no up or down motion, nothing like an elevator, it is a very solid and safe feeling flyng in a beautiful hot air balloon. From treetops to up to 5000 ft or more, our pilots will choose the best heights for each days particular flight conditions to give the best sight seeing views.

Do you need a license to fly a balloon?

Yes, a commercial pilot is required to fly the balloon and we have some of the most experienced balloon pilots anywhere. Our pilots have made thousands flights yet elsewhere it is only required to have made as little as 35 hours in a balloon to fly their passenger flights. We teach pilots, so come fly with the best or even learn to fly, we even sell the aircraft also.

How much do balloons cost?

A new balloon can range in price from around $30,000 to hundreds of thousands depending on size, equipment, special designs and options. If you are interested in learning to fly, we can teach you to fly and we are an aircraft dealership that can sell both new and used balloon systems.

How big is the balloon?

An average Hot Air Balloon is 50,000 cubic ft. to 250,000 cubic ft. That is approximately 100 feet high and 60 feet in diameter. These balloons will carry between 1 to 14 passengers or more plus the pilot.

What time of day do the flights take place?

Flights take place at sunrise and approximately 2 hours prior to sunset only on days when winds are slow and weather is great. Hot Air Balloons are not able to fly during the middle of the day due to thermal activity, which makes the air unstable. The updrafts and downdrafts or thermals could overpower the balloons ability to climb so balloons stay on the ground during the middle of the day.

Can you fly all year?

Yes We Do! Great flights take place all year. Fall, Winter and Spring can be great but they do have more windy days so not as many days are flyable, but we fly all year as long as the weather conditions will allow the flight. Mornings flights will fly more often due to more favorable conditions more often in the morning.

Is it cold up there?

No, on cool days it is about the same as outside, but on warm days it can be much hotter in the balloon because some of the heat from the burners will come down in the basket and the balloon must be heated much hotter on a warm day than on a cold one to make the balloon fly. The higher you go the colder it gets, but the heat from the balloon will still keep you warmer than the air outside the balloon.

How long do you fly?

On average, flights are 40 minutes to one hour or more in length. Time depends on landing locations, fuel, weight and air temperature, morning flights and cooler days typically allow for more flying time, our pilots will give the longest flights they can depending on the conditions during each flight.

What is the balloon made of?

Most Balloons are made of nylon much like a winter ski jacket, the balloon is coated in a special coating to help it resist heat and UV. Balloons have an average life expectancy of 300-400 hours of use. This is why balloon rides can cost more than an airline ticket, the balloon or "envelope" can cost about 2/3 the entire cost of the aircraft, imagine having to replace 2/3 of a jet every few hundred hours, the cost of a airline ticket would soar.

What type of clothing should we wear?

Special clothing is not required, but we recommend you wear what you would normally wear for taking a long walk, in the country. We suggest practical wear such as, long pants, a hat and on cool days a light jacket. Please, no sandals, hi-heels or bare feet!

Can I bring a camera or binoculars?

Yes, we encourage it. Some of the greatest pictures can be taken from 500 ft in the air! Don't forget to bring a full charge or lots of batteries and a protective case for the landings.

How do I get a flight?

It's simple........Just give Balloon Quest a call at 248-634-3094, stop in our showroom or purchase right here Online. We will give all the information you need and schedule your flight with the purchase or at your leisure. Still not sure, stop in, call us or email us at with questions and talk to one of our expert commercial pilots.

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