Frequently Asked Questions 

We want all passengers to feel prepared, safe and comfortable in their experience with the Lake Geneva Balloon Company. If any of your questions or concerns are not addressed in this list, please contact us: we’re always looking to expand and improve this resource.

What is the single most important thing I should know about hot air ballooning with The Lake Geneva Balloon Company?

The single most important thing you need to know about hot air ballooning with The Lake Geneva Balloon Company is our complete dedication to your safety. For that reason, cancellations are a fairly common part of hot air ballooning in the midwest. The average guest is cancelled 6-8 times before their flight occurs. If you’re going to purchase and schedule a balloon ride with us, know that multiple cancellations can occur, but we’ll do everything we can to make it painless and limit your inconvenience.

Do you have an informational brochure I can download?

Yes, we do! An educated consumer is our best guest. Many of our guests have no idea what to expect for their balloon flight adventure and they have a lot of questions. Our Customer Care Guide is an extensive look at all the information you need to understand and plan for your balloon flight with us.
You can download a copy of our Customer Care Guide here:

Customer Care Guide Download



How much does it cost to go on a balloon flight?

We have two flight packages for you to choose from:


$320 per person

  • This flight is a one hour excursion above the Geneva Lakes area.
  • This package includes a post-flight champagne celebration.
  • You will be in a basket with a capacity of 4-10 people, plus the pilot.
  • A post-flight certificate suitable for framing will be issued to you after the flight.


$950 per couple (We are not selling new Private Flight Packages at this time)*

* We are honoring certificates for those who purchased previously, please call us to schedule your flight.

  • This flight is a one hour excursion above the Geneva Lakes area.
  • This package includes a post-flight champagne celebration & hors d’oeuvres.
  • You will be in a basket with a capacity of 2 people, plus the pilot.
  • A post-flight certificate suitable for framing will be issued to you after the flight.
  • Our Private Flights are limited to 2 people.

Can we pay and schedule online?

Our online booking option is currently not available. Please call us at (262) 206-3975 to book a new flight or reschedule a previously cancelled flight.

Do we pay in advance for our flight?

We only require a 50% down payment in order to reserve an advanced date.

When is the remaining 50% due?

The balance of your down payment is due after the post-flight celebration that follows your flight. Please be prepared to pay the full amount by cash, check or major credit card.

What is the expiration date of my certificates?

Unlike with most balloon ride companies, active certificates with The Lake Geneva Balloon Company never expire. An active certificate is one for which at least one reservation in the past 12 months has been made. Certificates that haven’t had a reservation made in the past 12 months are considered “inactive” and will be honored only at the discretion of management.

What is your refund policy?

  1. Our flight certificates are fully refundable for a limited time only. 
    1. We will fully refund your down payment within 30 days of purchase. After that time, your certificate, while still valid, is not refundable.
    2. Certificate holders who live more than two hours away from Lake Geneva are refundable, if cancelled.
    3. A non-refundable $40 administration fee is deducted from any refund.
    4. All refunds are subject to the decision of the manager.

Where can I download a copy of The Assumption of Risk form I need to bring?

You can download a copy of our Assumption of Risk form here:

Assumption of Risk Form Download

Can we transfer our certificate to another party?

Your flight certificate can be redeemed by anyone. The bearer of the certificate is the legal owner in our eyes. If you want to sell or give away your certificate… feel free. We only ask that the recipient of the transfer give us a call to register the certificate in their name.

How can we pay?

We can accept most major credit cards through our online booking application on our website or if you book by phone at (262)-206-3975. After the flight, when the other 50% is due, we’ll accept either credit card, cash or a check made out to The Lake Geneva Balloon Company.

How will we find out if our flight is “go” or “no go”?

When we have to cancel a flight, we try to limit your inconvenience by canceling your flight before you drive into Lake Geneva. Your pilot will contact you to let you know if you will be meeting. The following are the call times for our flight notifications:

  • Sunrise Flights — you will be contacted at approximately 7 p.m. the evening before your scheduled flight. You and the scheduler will arrange a wake-up time for the following morning and the pilot will contact you at the agreed upon time.
  • Sunset Flights — you will be contacted at approximately 1 p.m. the afternoon of your scheduled flight. You and the scheduler will discuss your meeting time.

In both cases, we also post flight status on our Facebook page and Flight Status page:

Why are there so many cancellations?

If your goal is to have a safe balloon flight in the midwest, patience is your best friend. The pilot must be absolutely certain of the weather. Our Chief Pilot, John Trione is an expert in aerostation meteorology (that’s fancy talk for ballooning weather). If a flight is scheduled and cancelled it is most likely due to unsuitable weather conditions that affect your safety. We know it’s disappointing to have a weather cancellation, but we’d rather disappoint you with a cancellation than put your safety at risk.

What is safe ballooning weather?

Ballooning is safely done at the beginning and end of each day. Balloons do not fly during the middle part of the day. The weather map below shows what good ballooning weather looks like to us in the midwest. High pressure centered over Minnesota and moving toward Wisconsin is a good sign for ballooning. Ideal conditions include:

  1. Surface winds under 8 mph during takeoff and landing
  2. Clear radar returns in a range of 75-100mph
  3. Winds under 25mph between 1,000 and 3,000 feet
  4. Dry ground for launch and recovery

In the end, the pilot in command is always the final arbiter of the safety of a balloon flight and has the final say on whether or not conditions are flyable.

When can we reschedule?

If your flight may be cancelled, we encourage you to use our online booking application  to reschedule. Or if you like you can call us at (262) 206-3975. Please note that we only allow guests to have one reservation on the calendar at a time.

What is your policy if I have to cancel my reservation?

We understand that life happens and you may need to cancel a reservation. We require 72 hours notice to cancel your reservation without a penalty to you. Please call us immediately if you have to cancel a reserved flight. If you do not show for your flight and do not contact us, your ticket will be voided.

What should we wear?/How hot (or cold) will it be?

In general, dress as though you were going for a nature hike for a few hours. Wear closed full shoes, like sneakers or boots. Do not wear sandals, flip-flops, crocks or clogs, high-heels etc. The balloon may land in rough terrain and you want to protect your feet. If the season is cool, dress in layers so you can add or remove clothing to ensure your comfort.

It is no colder in the balloon than on the ground. Wear long pants even in summer. This helps protect your legs in case the balloon lands in an area with unfriendly vegetation like stickers, thistles, etc. Hats are suggested for taller passengers since the burner produces radiant heat.

What paperwork do we bring with us to the meeting spot?

You will need to bring the following documents:

  1. Your original Lake Geneva Balloon Co. Flight Certificate
  2. Assumption of Risk Form (must be signed and dated at least 24 hours prior to flight)
  3. Your final payment (if necessary) in the form of check, money order or cash
  4. Photo ID

What time do we meet?

We meet our passengers at the time listed on on our calendar, which corresponds generally to:
  • 30 minutes before official sunrise for Sunrise Flights
  • 2.5 hours before official sunset for Sunset Flights

For sunrise and sunset times in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, please visit our weather page.

Where do we meet with our pilot and crew?

Do you have a map we can download and print?

Yes, you can download a map to Balloonport Lake Geneva here:

Downloadable map to Balloonport Lake Geneva


What happens after meeting at Balloonport Lake Geneva?

You’ll park your car in the parking lot and climb aboard our spacious 15-passenger van. The van will take you to the actual launch site, which is determined during an operational meeting between pilots & crew chiefs. After we arrive at our launch site, the crew will set up the equipment for the flight. The van follows the balloon until it lands, at which point you’ll be taken back to the Pie Company and your car.

What do I do during the inflation of the balloon?

If you would like, you may ask the pilot to “join the crew” and help out. It’s a fun part of the experience and your crew chief will give you all the “on the job” training you’ll need. Don’t worry, safety is our first priority and any job you will be assigned to will be one that is in-line with your ballooning experience.

If you’d rather let us do the work, that is great too — your trip, your call! If you choose instead to be a spectator and take photos, please remain in the approved areas for passengers during set-up and inflation.

How long is the flight?

Your flight will last approximately 1 hour in length. Technically, the Lake Geneva Balloon Company sales contract defines 45 minutes as a full ride, but dramatic weather changes are the only reason a flight would end before 60 minutes have elapsed. In total, the from the time you meet us in the parking lot until after our post-flight celebration at The Lake Geneva Pie Company is approximately 2.5 hours.

What happens during landing?

The crew on the ground gets permission from a land owner and we land the balloon. Your crew will take down the balloon system and pack it away. You are more than welcome to join in, but it is not required. Please remember, we are usually on private property and have limited permission to be there. Let’s respect the property of the landowners who grant us permission and leave no trace of our intrusion. The Lake Geneva Balloon Company prides itself on being a good neighbor.We will drive you back for the post-flight celebration at the Lake Geneva Pie Company.

What is the post-flight celebration at Balloonport Lake Geneva?

After we pack up and drive back to Balloonport Lake Geneva we have a small post-flight ceremony.

At this time that you’ll also be presented with your post-flight certificate (suitable for framing) that commemorates your time spent above Lake Geneva.

Is it appropriate to tip the pilot and crew?

As with any service-oriented business, if you feel the performance, customer service and friendliness of your flight crew was exceptional and want to reward that with a monetary tip, we thank you! Our pilots and crew are professionals — paid employees who are dedicated in their training and performance to make your balloon flight safe and enjoyable. Because of the “hit or miss” nature of our business, most of our employees work other jobs and work as crew people because of their love of the sport. The wages and tips they earn are really appreciated for their dedication and hard work.

What if we get lost or need to contact the pilot the day of our flight?

Your pilot will provide you with a private cell phone number the day of your flight. Or you can call our office at (262) 206-3975. This phone is also manned during “non-business hours” on days when flight operations are being conducted.


The Do’s and Don’ts of your day

  • DO be prompt
  • DO sign your waiver at least 24 hours prior to flying
  • DO wear the appropriate clothing
  • DO NOT be intoxicated or under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • DO NOT come to Balloonport Lake Geneva unless called — no call, no flight
    Map to Balloonport Lake Geneva


  • “I couldn’t think of a more unique birthday gift to give to someone than a hot air balloon ride with John and his crew at the Lake Geneva Balloon Company.”

    Vicky, Debby & Susan, Waukesha
  • “The ride was breathtaking, and even though we were a little nervous at first, you set us right at ease at made it one of the most unique and awesome experiences of our lives!”

    Elizabeth & Eric (engaged on board!)
  • “Thanks for everything in making our 1st balloon ride a great success. We couldn’t have chosen a better pilot & crew for our 1st flight!!”

    Luanne & Dan, Camp Hill, Pennsylvania