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Why is it best to take a private helicopter tour in the summer?

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Seeing the sights from the sky is an unforgettable experience, as you will have a unique perspective that you just don’t get on the ground. London landmarks such as the London Eye, Big Ben and the Shard are all even more breathtaking when you see them from above.

A bird’s eye view is the best way to see the city skyline, but when is the best time to take a private helicopter tour?

helicopter - sun

Do the seasons impact on a helicopter flight?

While it is possible to experience a helicopter flight throughout most of the year, weather conditions should always be taken into consideration when you are choosing when to take your tour.

Winter brings the risk of ice and snow, as well as strong winds and rain, all of which pose a safety risk and may result in a flight being postponed.

Spring and summer are generally a safer bet when planning a private helicopter tour, as the weather is more likely to be clear. However, as we are all aware, there is no guarantee it won’t rain, even in the middle of summer! There is also the possibility of a summer storm, which would prevent your flight from taking off.

Autumn is a popular choice for private helicopter tours, as whilst the weather may not be particularly warm, the views should be good thanks to the clear skies. Beautiful Autumn scenery and turning leaves also make for striking photographs, with less likelihood of glare spoiling your shot.

Why should I choose to fly in the summer?

Whilst the weather conditions are the primary reason why summer is the best time to take a private helicopter flight, with a better chance of good flying weather and less risk of your flight being postponed or cancelled, there are also other benefits of flying in the summer months:

  • Good views – a clear summer’s day provides the perfect backdrop for you to see the sights through your tour, reducing the risk of clouds obscuring your view  
  • Ambient temperature – it can get cold in the cabin of a helicopter, even more so during the cooler autumn and winter months. Leave your coat and gloves at home and choose to fly during the summer, when a long sleeved jacket should be the only outer layer you need to keep you comfortable during your flight
  • Reduced turbulence – if you are nervous of taking a flight in a private helicopter, flying during the summer months should reduce the risk of any bumpiness, for a smoother, more enjoyable flight

Bear in mind that spring and summer are typically the busiest times of year for private helicopter tours, so ensure you book ahead as early as possible so you can fly on your chosen day.

If you are planning to take a helicopter flight during your holiday, it’s a good idea to book for the beginning of your stay, in the event that you may have to reschedule due to inclement weather.

What time of day should I fly?

Whilst the season is important, the time of day is also key when you are planning a private helicopter tour.

Flying early in the morning may result in a smoother flight but if you wish to take photographs, an afternoon tour may be better as you will not be shooting directly into the sun and any early morning fog or mist should have cleared, giving you the best possible view.

If you’re unsure of when to book your flight, get in touch and we’ll be more than happy to answer any questions or help with any queries you may have.

What should you expect on a private helicopter tour?

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You’re sure to be filled with excitement ahead of your first private helicopter tour. Our handy hints and tips will help you prepare before the day of your flight arrives, so you can make the most of your tour.  

private-helicopter

How long will my flight last?

The length of your flight depends on the helicopter tour you choose:

  • Our London Buzz helicopter tour lasts 12 minutes. 1 seat costs £150, whilst the whole aircraft costs £750
  • Our London Sights tour lasts 18 minutes and is our most popular choice. Booking a single seat costs £220, whilst booking the whole helicopter for your exclusive use costs £2,200  
  • Our London Max. tour lasts 30 minutes, at a fixed cost of £1,700 for your sole use of the helicopter  

How many passengers will be on my flight?

Typically you will fly with three or five other passengers, depending on the size of the helicopter. The helicopter will be chosen based on the combined weight of the passengers, for optimum safety and security.

Can I choose who is on my helicopter tour?

Yes you can. If you booked your flight with other people they will fly with you, but bear in mind they may not sit beside you due to the need to balance the helicopter. We will always do our best to ensure your group is seated together. If you do wish to only have yourself and your friends or family on the flight, book a private flight, rather than a public one. If you have any questions or queries regarding your choice of flight, just get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.

How is seating in the helicopter arranged?

Seating in the helicopter is arranged by weight and balance. This is essential for the safety and security of the flight.

Can I choose my seat on the helicopter?

There are multiple seats in each helicopter, each with their own spectacular view. Due to weight and balance restrictions we seat our passengers accordingly to balance the helicopter’s centre of gravity, so your seat will be allocated to you.

Do I have to pass a security check?

We request that you arrive at the heliport no less than 20 minutes before your scheduled flight time in order to complete the secure check in and safety briefing.  If you arrive later than 20 minutes prior to your flight, you will not be able to fly.

What can I take onto the helicopter with me?

You are permitted to bring a camera or smartphone and glasses or sunglasses aboard the helicopter. Handbags, camera bags, keys, scarves, hats and any other loose items of clothing will need to be stored in a secure locker at the heliport.

Will I be able to take pictures or video?

You may take photos or video once aboard the aircraft. Taking pictures on the heliport ramp while walking to the helicopter is strictly prohibited.

What happens if the weather is bad on the day of my flight?  

Weather conditions such as fog, heavy rain, snow, high winds and thunderstorms can prevent a helicopter flight from taking off. We will notify you as soon as possible on the day of your scheduled flight to let you know if it has to be cancelled due to inclement weather.

Are there any other circumstances where my helicopter tour flight would be delayed?

A flight may be delayed due to intermittent weather conditions, a maintenance issue that was unplanned or as a result of some other operational issue beyond our control. We will keep you informed and provide you with updates or the opportunity to reschedule should this be necessary.

Do I need to take out insurance for my flight?

We hold compulsory Public Liability insurance which covers our pilots and passengers for any loss or injury incurred from their flight. There is no insurance provision for you missing your scheduled flight due to late arrival, or any loss associated with a delayed or cancelled flight.

From the time you book your reservation to the time you fly in one of our helicopters, you will have the time of your life. Why not share the sights and memories of your flight with others in our gallery?

What are the best occasions for taking a private helicopter tour?

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The perfect way to celebrate a special occasion in memorable style, you’ll make memories you’ll never forget with a London Helicopter flight.

 

bride and groom helicopter

Public vs. private flights

For a special occasion, it’s worth choosing a private helicopter tour rather than a public one. This will mean that it is only you and your chosen guest (s) onboard. If you choose a public flight, you’re likely to have to share the cabin with others.

Make a special occasion even more unforgettable with our recommendations:

Proposal

What could be more romantic than popping the question in mid-air? Choose your location and surprise your loved one in true style.

Anniversary

Celebrate the date you met, got married, proposed…. Whichever date you mark as your anniversary, what better way to spend it than with a private helicopter tour?

Significant birthday

Invite family and friends and make their 18th, 21st, 30th or 50th birthday one they’ll never forget with a tour on a private helicopter.

Valentine’s Day

Treat your loved one to a ride in a private helicopter for a Valentine’s Day they’ll remember forever. Take a flight over the place you first met or somewhere that holds special memories for you both.

Graduation

Celebrate all their hard work and their newly acquired degree with a private helicopter flight, just the thing after all that revision and exam pressure.

Prom

They’ll be the envy of the friends and the talk of the school with a private helicopter ride to their prom. It’ll beat a standard limousine hands down!

Photography trip

If you love to take photos, capture your most stunning shots yet with a private helicopter tour.  You’re in full control and you can ask the pilot to get you closer to that perfect land or seascape.

Night flight or early morning, add diversity to your portfolio and unique prints to your walls. If you’re shooting somewhere that holds special memories, why not have your photographs turned into a canvas for the perfect gift for a loved one?

Retirement

Begin your retirement in style with a private helicopter tour. Invite family or workmates for a unique send off.

Visiting friends and family

If you have friends or family visiting from abroad and it’s the first time they’ve visited London, why not treat them to a flight over the city’s famous landmarks? It beats the Tube as a way to get around!

Arrive in style

Heading to Glastonbury, V or Reading this summer? Why not travel in style and arrive in a helicopter?

Think outside the box when it comes to your wedding a hire a helicopter rather than a classic car.

Racing, football or tennis? Whichever is your sport of choice, head to the event in a helicopter and make the day that bit more special. The British Grand Prix, the FA Cup final or Wimbledon, the choice is yours.

Looking to impress a key client or close a deal? A private flight will ensure they’re left with a lasting impression!

How much?

The price you pay for your private flight will vary depending on the aircraft, but, as a guideline, the hourly rate in the UK ranges from £180 plus VAT to around £350 plus VAT for a smaller helicopter, to £500 per hour plus VAT for larger aircraft.  

Typically, you can expect to pay around £800 plus VAT for a short distance fight between two points. This should be sufficient for an event such as a wedding.

Maximise your experience

A bespoke charter package allows you to combine your private helicopter flight with a hotel, restaurant, spa or golf booking to make the experience even more memorable.

  • Fly and dine – arrange to land in driving – or walking! – distance of your favourite restaurant   
  • Fly and stay – end your private flight in the grounds of a luxury hotel or spa
  • Fly and play – take a private tour to the golf course of your choice

Whether the weather…

When you are thinking about booking a private helicopter tour, consider the effect of the weather on your plans. Inclement conditions such as fog, heavy rain, strong winds, snow and thunderstorms can prevent a scheduled flight from taking place and whilst we all know how unpredictable the great British weather can be, it is worth planning your flight for the spring or summer months when the weather should – hopefully! – be on your side.

 

Support London’s Air Ambulance

We are delighted to support London’s Air Ambulance, helping to extend the reach of their lifesaving missions across London. The London Helicopter will match your donation to double its impact.

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