Hot air balloon rides shatter the stork community’s monopoly on carrying humans in baskets. Democratize the skies with this Groupon.
Choose Between Two Options
- $136 for a hot-air balloon ride for one with champagne breakfast (a $289 value)
- $271 for a hot-air balloon ride for two with champagne breakfast (a $578 value)
Each flight begins at a predetermined location, usually in the Sonoran Desert, and travels for 5-7 miles at heights that range from treetop level to 5,000 feet. Flights typically last about 45 minutes, but this time may vary depending on the availability of landing sites. A preflight briefing familiarizes passengers with what to expect on the journey, and at the end, a pickup crew will be waiting with flutes of champagne to celebrate. They’ll also supply muffins, rolls, eggs, seasonal fresh fruit, orange juice, soft drinks, and bottled water. Flight temperatures are generally similar to ground temperatures, so dress for the day’s weather. The crew also recommends bringing a hat and sunglasses, and asks that passengers wear closed-toe shoes. See some FAQ here.
Arizona Balloon Safaris
When Randy Long and his family recently went on spring break, they didn't laze around on a beach staring at the sea. Instead, they trekked around the world to China. The choice of destination isn't surprising given Randy's extraordinarily adventurous spirit—the former travel agent has trotted the globe a few times, dog sledding in Alaska and scuba diving in Bermuda along the way.
Despite his eagerness to explore, Randy probably surprised even himself when he was caught by an unexpected wave of inspiration during a 1986 Rotary Club meeting in Illinois. When hot air balloonist Harold Lovelace spoke to the club, Randy was so transfixed that he immediately offered to buy one of Harold's balloons. By the end of the year, Randy had his pilot's license, was flying in the world's largest hot air balloon event, and became a pro at photo-bombing the portraits of landscape artists. Within five years, he sold his travel agency and set up shop in Arizona as a full-time balloon pilot.
Since founding Arizona Balloon Safaris, Randy has maintained a perfect flight record, successfully piloting more than 2,000 flights for more than 20,000 passengers (including Shakira and J.W. Marriott). His colorful balloons ride the Sonoran Desert's breezes, gently carrying passengers as far as seven miles while maintaining a feeling of near motionlessness. From any corner of the balloons' sturdy wicker baskets, people can scan all 360 degrees of the desert panorama without a single visual interruption. Whether skimming the tops of cacti or reaching the flight's 5,000-foot apex, groups will likely spot—and sometimes hear—deer, coyote, and jackrabbits during the 45-minute ride. Passengers can bring a camera to take pictures of these sights along the way. Upon landing, the chase crew welcomes groups back to Earth with celebratory glasses of champagne.