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Domestic flights in Myanmar

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Asian Wings

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Air Mandalay

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Air Bagan

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Golden Myanmar Airlines

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Mann Yadanarpon Airlines

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Yangon Airways

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Oriental Balloon Booking Form

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Balloon Service * FAQs
1. Oriental Ballooning will fly with 6 balloons in Mandalay for the 1st operating year and will launch 2 balloons with 4 passengers (Total 8 passengers) and another 4 balloons with 8 passengers each.

2. Oriental Ballooning start operating from 21st November 2013 in Mandalay & 1st January 2014 in Bagan.
3. Flight normally takes 45 minutes to one hour, depending on the wind. The whole experience from the time of hotel pick up, light breakfast, watching set up of the hot air balloons, flight journey and being picked up at the end will take around 3 hours or so. One of the adventures of ballooning is that not knowing where you are landing.

4. Our private charter & premium service will extend a very private and intimate service to the passengers.

5. Oriental Ballooning will offer transportation to and from hotel to launching site and landing site, light breakfast, flight tour, rescuing adventure & celebration a glass of champagne.

6. Oriental Balloons are built in a safest & highest standard of the British aerospace industry by Cameron Balloons Ltd which is the world's largest hot air balloon manufacturer. Pilots & technicians are all European nationals and they are qualified and registered in the UK. All crews are trained to international standards.

7. Passengers will see lots of Pagodas & majestic Irrawaddy River but it will depend on the wind direction to make flight tour which site you are seeing exactly. And again depending on the wind, take off site may change and this decision will take by the pilot in command on that day of your flight. The same for landing, that you may land on the field, on the sand bank of Irrawaddy River, near a pagoda or a field by a village.

8. There will be scheduled morning sunrise flight daily for the passengers but evening flights will be on a standby basis if evening weather conditions permit. For your information, Mandalay as well as Bagan, both 2 places are mostly beautiful early in the morning and weather is pleasant and cool too.

1. How long is the flight?

Our flights normally last 45 minutes to one hour, or longer depending on the wind. The whole experience including hotel pick ups and light champagne breakfast lasts between 2 ½ to 3 hours. Ballooning is also about watching the set up of the balloon, and being rescued at the end too, not just the flight itself. Not knowing where you are going to land is always exciting and part of the adventure!

2. What do we see?

The exciting thing about ballooning is that you just don't know. You will see Bagan waking up in the morning. You will see many temples in the distance and get a spectacular aerial view of Bagan. Sometimes you may fly over villages and see people on their early morning rounds, feeding their animals; or going to market. It is an amazing and interactive experience.

3. Can we go to …… by balloon?

The balloon can only go where the wind takes it. So we unfortunately cannot pre-plan where it will land.

4. Is it safe?

  • Commercial passenger ballooning is the safest form of all air transport.
  • In Bagan we are always very careful. We only fly when there are light surface winds less than 8 knots., and have never recorded any accident or incident however minor
  • Our pilots and technicians are European Nationals qualified and registered in the UK.
  • Our balloons are built to the highest standards of the British aerospace industry by Cameron Balloons Ltd and Lindstrand Balloons.
  • All our crew are trained to the highest international standards for the past 14 years and have all been trained in first aid by UK Public Transport Inspectors.

5. I'm scared of heights.

Ballooning does not usually affect those people who are scared of heights. Because the balloon travels with the wind, the basket is very stable and does not sway or rock during flight. There is no sense of vertigo or motion.

6. Do we see this pagoda?

You will see lots of pagodas! Exactly which pagoda you will see depends on the wind direction.

7. How many people can fit in one balloon?

We currently have seven balloons in service and we will offer 10 balloons in 2013 – 2014 season. Two balloons have room for 8 passengers in four separate compartments plus a pilot. One balloon has room for 12 passengers in four separate compartments. Seven balloons have room for 16 passengers in four separate compartments, offering arrange of flexibility across our entire fleet for small or larger groups.

8. What is the premium service?

Our successful premium service offers a more personalised and spacious experience for a maximum of just 16 passengers per day in our two smallest 8 passenger balloons. Designed to hold just 4 couples in their own individual compartments with more personal space, the premium service offers a more intimate and private experience. A highlight of the experience is a guided interactive tour around the balloon during inflation from your pilot just prior to take off. In addition to this, clients will receive a free CD or memory stick including an in-flight photo of their flight.

9. What do we get for the price?

A memory that we hope will last forever; transport to and from your hotel to launch and landing site, flight, 'rescue', celebratory glass of champagne and light breakfast.

10. Where do we take off?

The take off site changes with the wind and is decided by the pilot in command on the day of the flight. We have exclusive use of the Shwezigone sports ground which affords a spectacular view of the Shwezigone pagoda at first light.

11. Where do we land?

Wherever the wind takes you! This could be next to a Pagoda, a field by a village, on a sandbank, or even across the river, which will involve a rescue by boat.

12. What time will we be picked up?

For the morning flight, passengers are usually picked up at their hotels by our Balloons over Bagan bus between 05h30 and 06h00 in the morning depending on the location of your hotel and the hotels of other passengers. The exact time will be given to you the evening before when you or your guide come to our sales desk at the Balloons over Bagan office in Wet-Kyi-Inn village to reconfirm your flight.

13. What time do we get back to the hotel?

In the morning flight, passengers are usually back at their hotels by 8.00 or 8.30 am. Some passengers like to stay longer after landing to drink an extra glass of champagne or chat with villagers who come to witness the landing. The post flight celebrations are an important part of ballooning in this special area and not to be rushed!

14. Can we fly at sunset?

We can sometimes put on evening flights on a standby basis only. Unfortunately because of the tropical location in Bagan, evening weather conditions tend to be less favourable and less reliable than in our scheduled morning flights. We believe therefore that a morning flight affords a more enjoyable and superior experience. Bagan is normally at its most beautiful early in the morning, and temperatures are pleasant and cool.

15. Can our children fly?

For safety reasons there are age and height restrictions. We set a minimum age of 8 years old, but as a general rule, all passengers must be able to see over the basket.

16. How can we pay for a pre-booking?

For a pre-booking, full payment must be made preferably by bank transfer at least 30 days in advance of the flight date.

17. Can I get my money back if the balloon flight is cancelled?

Yes of course! Balloons over Bagan only operates when the chief pilot decides that the weather is suitable and it is safe to fly. Therefore it might unfortunately be possible that we have to cancel the balloon flight at the launch site for safety reasons. In that case we will refund 100% of your payment. All direct payments to Balloons over Bagan will be refunded in cash either in Bagan or in Yangon. If you have made payment through your travel agent, we will advise them immediately so that they can make arrangements for your refund on you return to Yangon.

18. Can I decide later in Bagan whether I want to fly or not?

It is possible to buy a last minute stand by ticket at our sales desk at the Balloons over Bagan office in Wet-Kyi-Inn village but this is only possible if we have spaces left for the next day. In recent years at certain times during the season we unfortunately have had to turn people away who wanted to book at short notice, but couldn't because the day they were in Bagan the balloons were already fully booked by package tours. Therefore, to avoid disappointment, we strongly suggest you make your booking in advance. However if you are planning to stay in Bagan for 3-4 days there is a much better chance to book a standby space on one of the flights. If you are in any doubt, please feel free to contact us directly by phone or email, and we can give you an indication of our current booking status. Please note that this is an indication only, and may not remain accurate for very long.

19. Why do I have to give my weight?

It is important that we receive the correct weight of each passenger as soon as possible. The chief pilot needs this figure to calculate the total ballast of the basket, so that he can determine the total amount of lift available on that day.

20. Who owns Balloons over Bagan?

Balloons over Bagan is a 100% private Myanmar company, which was set up and is run by husband and wife team Brett Melzer and Khin Omar Win.

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