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How fast does a hot air balloon go?

28/07/2022 Jo Bailey Features

The experience of floating in a hot air balloon is unlike any other. As the name indicates, these vehicles are powered by air rather than by engines.

This makes them a quieter and more relaxing way of enjoying scenic areas like Bristol and Bath from the sky, compared with an aeroplane or helicopter. The thrill comes from the views rather than from the speed of travel.

So, exactly how fast can you expect to move if you take a ride in one of these balloons?

Standard balloon speed

Hot air balloons are typically fitted with propane cylinders that create the hot air needed to lift them up into the sky. The pilot controls the heat of this air to take them higher or bring them lower as required.

However, although this affords some level of control, it is not the same as being engine powered. Essentially, the speed of a hot air balloon is determined by how powerful the wind is.

Anyone taking a trip in one of these vehicles for the first time should expect the balloon to move at a speed of between 8 and 10 miles per hour. It represents the ideal pace to get the feeling of floating like a bird, while also allowing you to savour sights like the deer park at Ashton Court, Bristol or the Somerset countryside outside Bath.

Of course, the speed would be increased by very high winds, but a responsible balloon company would not allow the ride to go ahead under those circumstances for safety reasons.

Length of the trip

Moving at a leisurely pace, a hot air balloon ride will last for roughly an hour. The gentle drift will allow plenty of time to soak up the scenery, whether it is the beautiful architecture of Bath, or South Wales, with its Brecon Beacons and historic castles. Part of the overall fun is to get involved in prepping the balloon beforehand and taking it apart afterwards.

Your trip in a hot air balloon over Bath or another beauty spot can take you as high as 5,000 feet in the air. Furthermore, because they are wind-powered, no two balloon rides are exactly the same – so you are guaranteed something truly unique!

In conclusion, the speed of a hot air balloon varies depending on weather conditions, but a maximum of 10 miles per hour is to be expected. Call Bailey Balloons to book your trip today.

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