Do you want to plan a scenic helicopter tour for you and your loved one, but you’re not sure what to expect? Helicopter tours are a safe and fun way to admire the natural beauty of the Florida Keys. You can see them from a perspective that only a few people get to see.
With this in mind, read to learn all about what to expect with Ultimate-HeliTours and plan one!
Reservations vs Walk-Ins
You’ll first want to determine whether the helicopter tour company you’ve chosen offers reservations or walk-ins. If a helicopter tour is something you and your partner definitely want to experience during your visit, we recommend a reservation.
A walk-in can be your last resort if you’re not able to book a reservation at your ideal time and day. Remember that you’ll want to inform the company at least 48 hours ahead of time if you need to cancel. Since seats and flights are limited, canceling any later will probably incur fees.
It’s important that you look up the restrictions for your helicopter tour. For instance, the Robinson Raven I only accepts a maximum of three passengers and a minimum of two for a tour. If you want to book a private flight, you’ll most likely have to pay a premium fee.
There is also a combined weight limit of 550 lbs not to exceed 350 lbs. person. Children under the age of five will always need to be accompanied by an adult. People with disabilities are welcome to fly.
It’s important that you research the cost of your helicopter tour so you can ensure you stay on budget during your vacation! The average cost of a helicopter tour is $59.00 – $459,00 per person.
If you’re not sure about the time, ask the staff for their recommendations. They’ll be able to help accommodate the time you have as well as your budget.
Some people can be nervous due to a fear of flying or a feeling of precaution. It’s important to ask the company your booking whether their pilots are certified and FAA commercially rated. This means that passed all FAA tests and have the required certifications.
You’ll also want to ask the company about their safety record. Safety measures should be in place as well as regular maintenance guidelines for their helicopters with FAA-licensed mechanics.
Handling Bad Weather
Once you make your reservation, you may be nervous about bad weather intruding on your flight time. However, it’s important to know that Florida’s weather is highly unpredictable. If it does rain, it normally only lasts for 10 to 15 minutes at a time unless there’s a predicted storm.
You don’t have to wear any specific attire in order to enjoy a helicopter ride! Florida tourism is all about keeping comfortable and cool, and that’s all you need to wear when you board a helicopter. It’s important to be as comfortable as possible so you can fully enjoy your ride.
If you’re riding in a Robinson R-44 helicopter with an open cockpit, it’s recommended to bring along your camera because you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get great shots. Wide-angle lenses are perfect to show the whole scope of the land below. If you want to take photos of marine life or other wildlife, a telephoto lens will serve you better.
If you’re not sure what kind of tour of the Florida Keys is right for you, you can make your decision based on time. Many companies offer the average length for each of their tours. We recommend starting with a short time if you’re new to helicopter flights and you’re not sure what your reaction would be.
Tours that are 25 minutes are less typically include:
- Pigeon Key Island
- Seven Mile Bridge
- Vaca Key and Boot Key
- Duck Key and Hawk’s Cay
- Sunset Experience
If you want to see everything, you can expect a 60-minute flight time as you cruise 300 to 500 feet above the keys. You can also choose to get a better view of the Bahia Honda State Park or a combination of the 25-minute tours.
Ask yourself whether you want to experience an overall impression of the Keys or if you want more detailed tours of specific areas. If you want to take photos with a telephoto lens of marine life and other wildlife, consider a shorter tour that will take more time exploring specific areas.
Read the Reviews
Last but not least, before you make a decision about what company to fly with, it’s important that you read their reviews. This will give you a good, overall impression of what to expect and whether they’re a trusted company. If you find that the majority of their reviews are negative, this is a strong indication that you should stay away.
Scenic Helicopter Rides for Your Florida Keys Vacation
Scenic helicopter rides are a great way to jumpstart your tropical vacation or to wave goodbye to a scenic area that you love. If you’re afraid of your experience being ruined by motion sickness, you don’t have to worry.
Helicopter tours are smooth rides with gentle turns. You’ll be comfortable enough to take out your camera and take photos as you enjoy the unique perspective.Ready to explore your helicopter tour options of the Florida Keys? Take a look at our tour packages today to get started!