Taking a private helicopter tour of Fort Lauderdale and Miami might seem like a super extravagant thing to do, but it really is not anymore!
A lot of companies offer this amazing once-in-a-lifetime view over the famous beaches of Miami and Fort Lauderdale within reach for most travelers.
Despite a slight fear of flying, I embarked upon this adventure with five-star rated Keen Fly on one of my solo trips to Miami a while back – and I LOVED it! (Once I got over the little bumps above the city and out over the ocean, that is).
Another 5 stars from me, just look at this!
After I have been picked up in the little tarmac cart and arrive at the hangar, it is time for a short pre-flight briefing on the tarmac before we go!
This helicopter is so small!
It literally is a bubble of glass, with just enough space for two people (of which one is the pilot), and this also naturally provides an absolutely amazing view from start to finish!
Pre Flight Briefing On The Tarmac
Pilot Tracy does the pre-flight briefing on the tarmac, and we go through what to do and not to do.
With my purse (which stays on the ground), phone (secured around my neck), feet (when they are not outside the helicopter for a photo shoot), and practical things like that.
You get the security do’s and don’ts that is the pilot’s responsibility, but you also need to be aware of inside the helicopter.
Headset on, and then we are off as soon as the take-off is cleared with the tower! Not like any other take-off with a plane, as you don’t really need a runway.
Also read: 7 Perfect Itineraries For One Day In Miami!
So we just lift off to hover a bit, and then “drive” hovering along the road system until we can ascend – and head for the coastline!
This is just amazing!
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If you want to fly without doors, it is an extra little fee to be able to do that, but let me tell you, you don’t want doors!
When you already have invested in this amazing helicopter tour you NEED to be close to the elements as well!
You absolutely do not want doors – feel the winds! You will still be told when it is ok to stick your feet out like this, and when not, safety first always!
You book your helicopter tour online with Viator like all other normal bookings, but when the booking has gone through, you will need to provide a bit more information as there are some aviation rules.
You will receive a couple of emails explaining everything, where you need to watch a safety video and confirm that you have watched it.
And then sign an enclosed waiver (if you accept what it says), and sent that back signed.
Make sure you have detailed directions for the neet-up place, as the Fort Lauderdale Airport is full of buildings and hangars, and maybe not be intuitive for people who don’t go there every day.
I took an Uber over (who was not a local either), and we spent a few minutes searching and calling to find the right place. All ended well, just a head’s up!
There is nothing special you need to do before the helicopter tour from Fort Lauderdale, apart from watching the safety video and signing the waiver beforehand.
The rest of the preparations will be taken care of when you get there! If you want to fly with the doors open that is an add-on you need to pre-book as well.
And you definitely want to do that, once in your life wiggle your toes outside a helicopter high above Fort Lauderdale and Miami beach!
FAQ’s Helicopter Tours
Never done a helicopter tour before, and have some questions? A lot of people feel that way, and here are some of the most common ones answered!
Are Helicopter Tours Dangerous?
As long as all regulations are followed, and you fly with an experienced pilot helicopter tours are not dangerous.
It is essential that the helicopter tour company has secure safety measures in place.
Also, as a passenger, make sure you are compliant with any instructions you are given before or during the flight. When everyone holds up their end of responsibility, you will have a safe and joyous experience on a helicopter ride!
Safety Rules For Passengers
When embarking on a thrilling helicopter journey, safety must be of utmost importance in order to relax and enjoy the experience.
To make sure you’re prepared for take-off and beyond, it’s essential to dress appropriately: no loose or flimsy clothing such as scarves or bandanas that may be swept away by winds!
Additionally, pay close attention during the mandatory pre-flight safety demonstration when the ground staff or pilot tells you everything you need to know.
And lastly, keep your headset and harness in place throughout the trip – they are not optional!
How to Pick a Safe Helicopter Tour!
To ensure passengers’ and pilots’ safety, it is essential that your tour operator follow the strict guidelines for helicopters.
These rules include selecting a reliable manufacturer, having frequent maintenance checks and services done, training pilots adequately, and adhering to industry standards and international standards for business aircraft operations.
If you are worried, you can ask your tour operator all these questions before you do your booking!
Do You Tip A Helicopter Tour Pilot?
The answer to this is that it is not considered customary to tip a helicopter pilot, but – there is always a but.
Helicopter pilots do provide a service that is both as a tour guide, as well as being responsible for you having a safe tour and an exceptional experience!
So if you feel that your pilot went above and beyond to give you all that, a tip will be greatly appreciated! You can read more about tipping helicopter pilots here.
When you first have decided to get up there in the sky, make sure you get exactly the experience that you want!
The flight in the middle of the day under blue skies was AWESOME!
BUT, you can also do sunset tours, or opt for a private romantic helicopter ride with champagne and things like that if you have a significant other to spoil!
Best Time To Visit The Miami Area
The Miami area in Florida, including Fort Lauderdale which is not very far from Miami, has a friendly and warm temperature all year round, apart from maybe mid-summer when the temp can get excruciatingly hot!
Also, be aware that in this region, you will be in the hurricane belt, and there is a possibility of accidentally visiting when a hurricane hits. The highest risk period for hurricanes is late August to October, during the wet season that runs from June through November each year.
Check out this overview of the weather in Miami from January through the year!
Top-Rated Places To Stay In Miami
- Goodtime Boutique Hotel in South Beach Miami is amazing
- Generator Miami in Mid Beach is tranquil with a cool vibe
Wynwood Art District
- Arlo Hotel is a brand-new addition to the Wynwood Art District
- Elegant modern homestay unit centrally in Wynwood
Wow, this is really a candidate for a bucket-list experience for me!
Although I have been in helicopters a lot before when I was in the army, it was quite a different experience flying with this tiny little glass bubble close to the elements, and over such an incredibly beautiful part of the world!
Ten points and five stars, that is my final verdict. Just wow!
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