A Balloon flight over the West Bank

Traveller Articles should NOT be adverts for any one particular company. This one therefore even has the company names on the balloons cut off.

It is a GENERIC balloon article. Any company posting their details here will have them removed.

To soar over the sites of the West Bank and to see below, the wonderful sites is breathtaking.Hatshepsut's Temple and the VoK beyond

BEFORE YOU GO TO LUXOR.

  • First check your own insurance policy or phone them (As some class this as a hazardous sport) and you may have to pay extra.
  • In the UK some insurance companies are even saying you must book it before you go with your Tour Company, to get cover.
  • When the Egyptians companies say they are insured it's for Egypt only - you will not get flown home in an air-ambulance in the event of any problems.

YOU CAN BOOK THE FLIGHTS IN MANY WAYS.

  • In the UK with your holiday companies as part of your package.
  • In Luxor with your holiday company
  • Balloon companies have representatives in Hotels Lobbies.
  • Local Tour Companies will arrange them.

Prices change every year (if not day) so it is best to put this question or any thing else not covered in this article on the Luxor Forum nearer the time of travel.

TIPS.

It is an early morning start...........................

It's dark!

The companies will pick you up from your hotel and take you over to the West Bank by motor boat. Usually you get a cuppa and a snack before you move off. The staff will ask your weight, to check the balloon loading. You may even experience several 'take-offs' and 'landings' (about a foot high!) as they check balance and move people around to get the weight distribution correct.

If required, staff will help you into and out of the basket. SOME companies even have little steps for this purpose as seen in the back of this support vehicle . If you think you may need help - CHECK with YOUR balloon company, otherwise you will be using footholes in the sides of the basket walls as shown in another picture below

Ground vehicle with the steps 

It is advisable to wear a hat and something to cover your shoulders - remember you are under a - VERY HOT - burner.  The balloons generally have large flat shiny metal plates either side of the pilot. If you can get yourself under one, it shields you from the heat of the flame. It can NOT BE STRESSED ENOUGH! - The flame is VERY HOT! - Unsuitably dressed women have been seen cowering down in the bottom of the basket, trying to hide from heat.

                                                       Basket details

 

Please see pictures below.Hopefully they will give an insight what to expect.

 Ramasseum  

                               Sunrise                                                                                        Desert

     Desert Landing

                                                              Left a bit - release ballast!

You will normally land in some farmers field and suffer the standard 'Pantomime of the Irate Farmer'. This is purely to help his compensation claim. It is rumoured that some farmers make more from balloons than they do from farming.

If you land in a field with crops like sugar cane, the balloon may take off again, to a meter or so and 'hover-taxi' out the field, guided by the ground crew to reduce the further crop damage if the passengers were let loose in the fields - also to protect the passengers

3 things then happen-

  1. A collection is frequently raised for the ground-crew 
  2. Videos are taken and get sold after landing. 
  3. You get a free tee-shirt (that won't fit you)


After the balloon ride they bring you back to the motor boat, cross the Nile and return you to your Hotel with a certificate of your flight.