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Tethered Hot Air Balloon Promotions

    A hot air balloon that is secured to the ground by lines or ropes is called a "tethered" balloon. Tethering keeps the balloon in place and prevents it from flying away from the promotion site. Tethering a balloon permits the pilot to lift off the ground to a variety of altitudes and return to the same spot. Without ropes or tethers a balloon will fly away in the direction of the wind. A tethered balloon may be used for the static display of banners or to carry passengers on short rides.children in a hot air balloon

Typical Uses

  • Grand Openings                                                                                                      

  • Sales Promotions

  • Special Events

  • Company Picnics

  • Private Parties

  • School Functions

  • Anytime that you wish to make a major visual impression                      

Balloon Details

  • 80-90 feet tall while sitting on the ground and 55-65 feet in diameter

  • Multiple bright eye catching colors

  • Altitudes range from 25-75 feet up depending upon    available space and wind conditions                                                                                                                                                                                            Tethered rides at the Firefly Music Festival July 2012


Rides may be from 2 to 5 minutes long permitting up to 75 passengers per hour.

    The number of passengers is dependent upon how much wind there is, the passenger weights, and the air temperature that day. Smaller balloons are used for tethering and the lighter the passengers, the cooler the day, and the calmer the winds, the greater the number of passengers that may be carried per hour. You may plan on 3 to 4 passengers per ride permitting 45-75 passengers per hour. Ride times will be based on the number of people expected to fly.

Site Suitability and Ideal Conditions

  1. A minimum area of 200' x 200' clear of obstacles (power lines, light poles, trees, etc.)

  2. Suitable terrain surface (should be fairly level, free of debris, mud, & oil - preferably on grass)

  3. Vehicle access and the ability to be driven on by full size vans

  4. Wind Protection/Light or Calm Winds (a buffered area out of the wind is best and <6-8 mph)

  5. Early or Late in the Day (to take advantage of calmer winds, just before or after sunset is best)

If an area is questionable or does not meet the suitability requirements, a site visit may be conducted to determine if a tether is feasible. Many times, Google Earth will permit us to determine suitability without physically visiting your location. There is a $25 charge per hour, portal to portal, plus mileage fee for an actual site visit.


  • Static Display (banner display)................$1,200 per hour

  • Passenger Rides...................................$1,400 per hour

  • Deposit to book a date...........................$500 (Included in the 1st hours fee after inflation)

  • .55 cents per mile travel

  • A minimum of one hour is required. $100 Price break after the 2nd hour and all time after the first hour is charged in 10ths of an hour (6 minute increments).

  • Banner costs are based on the detail, colors, and amount of copy. Custom banners are available from 3' x 3' for the basket to 12' x 32' for the balloon. We will be happy to quote a banner for you.

       Cost rationale - the fabric of a balloon is only serviceable for 3-400 flight hours and may cost over $40,000. A balloon is intended for flying free and not being held stationary. Tethering is hard on the equipment due to the fact that the balloon experiences wind loads while being restrained that do not occur when free flying. An hour of tethering a balloon is equivalent to 2-3 hours of regular flight time in terms of wear and tear.

hot air balloon rides in a grassy meadow


  1. Perfect for short term promotions of four hours or less. We are capable of tethering for longer periods.

  2. Appeals to all age groups and economic strata.

  3. Creates free advertising by generating other media interest and because they are highly photographed, the photos become keepsakes making them a long term advertising instrument.

  4. Extremely popular and memorable, it will have your guests or clients talking about it for years to come

  5. A very cost effective advertising medium.


    Balloons are extremely weather dependent especially with regard to the wind. Even a light breeze may exert several thousand pounds of force against the balloon. Think of it as a giant sail! Gusty or unpredictable wind conditions are unsafe to operate in. If weather conditions on the day of the promotion are obviously outside our operating parameters, deposits are refundable less $25 if we do not leave our facility. The deposit is considered earned if we arrive on site and standby awaiting suitable conditions.

Our Tether Client List (Representative)

  • American Cancer Society

  • Red Frog Events, Firefly Music Festival

  • Towson University

  • The International Monetary Fund

  • U.S. Navy and Naval Reserve

  • Ryland Homes

  • General Motors

  • Ernst & Young

  • Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration

  • Baltimore Gas & Electric

  • Chesapeake Packaging

  • Goucher Collegehot air balloon tether rides

  • Pep Boys

  • Sakrete Concrete

  • Maryland School for the Blind

  • Boordy Vineyards

  • Nissan Motor Company

  • University of MD, Baltimore County

  • Mount Saint Mary's University

  • Nemacolin Woodlands Resort

  • Towson University

How to Schedule a Tether Promotion

    All promotions are handled contractually. Contact our office for date availability and we will prepare a contract for your event. Should you have any questions or wish to book a date, please contact us and we will be happy to assist you.



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This page last revised January 2015

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