Frequently Asked Questions
The Elite provider of Helicopter Rides, Helicopter Lessons and Helicopter Flights
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Frequently Asked Questions

Flight experience information

What is a helicopter ride/tour/gift/flight experience?

We class all four terms as the same – throughout our website we may use any of these terms. You might be looking for a flight for yourself or as a gift for someone else, either way, our rides and tours offer an unforgettable experience for anyone and for any occasion.

What is a trial lesson?
A trial lesson is exactly what it says. It is an introductory lesson undertaken in one of our flight training school helicopters, where you actually get to fly the helicopter with hands-on control alongside one of our highly experienced flying instructors.If you're serious about wanting to become a helicopter pilot or you want to buy a gift for someone else with that extra special difference, then our trial lessons offer the perfect answer.
What is the difference between a helicopter ride/tour/gift/flight experience and a gift voucher?

A gift experience is one of our listed tours, rides or trial lessons. A gift voucher is a monetary gift that allows the recipient to redeem against anything on our website.

What is the difference between a helicopter ride/tour/gift/flight experience and an event flight?

Elite Helicopters operate at numerous and various events throughout the year, such as the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Waddington Air Show, Farnborough Air Show, Isle of Man TT races, War & Peace Show and more. At these events we operate a helicopter pleasure flying service where you can take a flight over the event and local area. The events at which we are operating will be listed and regularly updated here on our website, where you can either buy online or on the day at the event. Generally we only offer a local area flight at these events, however if you do have a specific requirement for a longer flight at any of the listed events then please give one of our flight advisers a call FREE on 0800 804 8807.

What are the advantages of buying a helicopter experience through Elite Helicopter Flights?

We have our own pilots, our own helicopters and operate under our own Air Operators Certificate (AOC). We sell direct to you, the customer. There is no third party involvement from any agency or marketing company. Our pilots are very familiar with the specific areas within which our range of helicopter flights and tours are conducted, and they have worked to put together routes that will give you the very best in excitement and spectacle. This means it's very simple and straightforward for you to find the perfect unforgettable gift for anyone and for any occasion.

How do I find the right experience?

We have kept it simple and offer a select choice of amazing experiences. Our flight experiences are available from different locations giving you a variety of breathtaking views on any individual flight. Coupled with options for varying lengths of flight time, you're able to choose an experience that really will provide memories of a lifetime. The two historic aerodromes that we operate from will enhance the experience further, offering lots to see and do.

If you're still not sure what type of helicopter flight to buy, then a helicopter gift voucher offers the perfect answer. Available from £25 up to £500, these can simply be redeemed against the price of any of the flights we offer. The perfect gift as they enable the recipient to choose the flight experience they want.

If you're uncertain about anything or want some specialist advice, then you can always call one of our flight experience advisers FREE on 0800 804 8807 or email us at [email protected]

Can I upgrade my helicopter experience?

Yes. You are able to upgrade your existing flight experience to any of the other flight options that we offer. Simply give one of our flight advisers a call free on 0800 804 8807 and they will arrange the upgrade for you. Please do have your existing order details with you when you call as we will require certain information.

Do I need to choose a specific date for the experience when I buy?

No, our gift packs can be left open-dated so that the recipient can choose a date to take their Helicopter experience. They do however need to make their booking before the expiry date.

Will the participant be insured for their experience?

Yes. As a licensed Commercial Air Transport Operator we are required by law to provide full third party liability insurance.

Are there any age, weight or height restrictions?

There is an individual passenger weight restriction of 18 Stone/114 kg on all of our Helicopter Experience Flights and Sightseeing Tours. Please contact us if you are above this weight limit and we will try to accommodate you, however you may be required to purchase additional seating space.

If you are booking a Trial Lesson Experience Flight the weight restriction is 16 Stone/102 kg.

There is no specific height restriction on any of the listed flight options, however if you are over 6 ft. 2 in / 188 cm tall you may feel cramped in certain helicopter types. If in doubt please feel free to contact us to check.

For our Helicopter Experience Flights and Sightseeing Tours the minimum passenger age is 3 years. Children under 10 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. For our Trial Lesson Experience Flights the minimum passenger age is 14 years.

We will make every effort to accommodate disabled passengers on all of our flight options but would ask you to please contact us to discuss your needs.

Can friends and family attend?

Family and friends are welcome to attend at the venues we operate from. There are cafés/restaurants at the aerodromes we use that have extensive menus and serve both hot and cold beverages. You can even buy lunch vouchers in advance and make these part of your gift. By all means make a day of it and bring the family along – don’t forget to bring the cameras and camcorders to 'catch the moment'.

Are dogs allowed?

It is preferable not to bring animals to the venues. Helicopters can create an environment that animals may not like, and it is not good to leave animals locked in cars. If you do have to bring your dog for any reason then please do talk to us first. You will have to ensure that they are kept on a lead at all times and looked after by a responsible person.

Will my experience go ahead in bad weather?

We want you to enjoy your flight. We want you to get a great view of the sites we fly over, and we are therefore looking for fair weather conditions. Sometimes weather can stop us from flying. Fog, high wind, heavy rain or thunderstorms are all conditions that are not favourable to fly in and as such we may have to cancel or postpone flying. If in doubt then please call us before leaving home and we will be able to advise you accordingly.

I don’t want my experience, can I have a refund or give it to someone else?

We are unable to issue refunds for unwanted or unclaimed flight experiences, however we will allow you to transfer it to another person if you wish. Please contact one of our Flight Advisers on 0800 804 8807 or email us at [email protected]

How long are the flight experience tickets valid for?

All flight experience tickets are valid for 9 months from the date of purchase. Expired tickets can be extended for a further 3 month period if required. There is a nominal charge of £25.00 which will be applied for each flight experience ticket that's extended. To extend a voucher please contact one of our flight experience advisers FREE on 0800 294 2506 or e.mail [email protected]

Do I need to take my experience before the expiry date?

You are required to book and complete your experience within the 9 month validity period. If you are unable to do this for any reason you are able to extend the voucher for a further 3 months, charges do however apply. In the event that we have had to cancel/postpone your scheduled flying date due to inclement weather or other issues beyond our control we will extend your voucher free of charge for a minimum of one month or through until the next available flying date.

How long is my helicopter gift voucher valid for?

All monetary gift vouchers are valid for 9 months from the date of purchase.

Flights at events information

Do I need to buy a ticket for the event as well?

Your flight ticket does not give you automatic entry to any of the listed events, if an entrance fee to the event is required then you will need to purchase your entry ticket and pay for this separately. Please check with the corresponding event organiser for more details.

I've bought a flight ticket at an event – what do I need to bring with me?

We will need to see a print out of your order confirmation, which doubles as your e-ticket.

Making a purchase

How can I buy my experience?

Right here on our website. Take a look at our how to buy page, purchasing a flight or voucher is very easy. If you have any difficulties at all then simply call one of our flight advisers FREE on 0800 804 8807.

I need a last minute gift, but will it arrive in time?

If you have an urgent requirement we would recommend that you select the email delivery option, or the guaranteed next day delivery (UK only) as we can send this immediately on receipt of your order.

How do I pay for an experience?

You can pay online by debit or credit card or via your PayPal account if you have one. If you are paying by card, once you get to the PayPal page select that you do not have a PayPal account and follow the instructions.

How do I redeem a monetary gift voucher?

Once you have added your chosen items to the shopping cart, there is a box to enter your voucher code. The value will be deducted from the cost. If you are booking over the phone then please quote your voucher code. Remember to bring the voucher with you on the day of the flight.

Can I redeem multiple gift vouchers online at once?

Currently you can only redeem one voucher per online transaction. If you have been given multiple vouchers as gifts and would like to use them all at once, please contact us on 0800 804 8807. One of our Flight Advisers will consolidate the total monetary value and issue you with another code for you to use. You will need all of your existing voucher codes when calling.

I’m not sure if payment has been processed correctly – how do I check this?

Once you have made your payment you should receive an email from us confirming your order and from PayPal confirming that the transaction has been processed. If you do not receive either please contact us and we'll check on our system.

I’ve lost my flight experience ticket, can I get a replacement?

Yes. We will have a copy of your order details and can provide you with an e-ticket replacement free of charge. Should you require a replacement sent in the post, a charge of £2.35 will apply.

I’ve lost my monetary gift voucher, can I get a replacement?

Yes. Providing the voucher hasn't already been redeemed we can send you a new one either via post or email. Please call one of our Flight Advisers on 0800 804 8807. There will be an admin charge of £5.00 for doing this.

What is a lunch voucher?

We not only want to ensure that you enjoy your experience flight, we want to go further and make sure that you are given the opportunity to make the most of your time with us. We want you to go away feeling that you have experienced more than just your helicopter flight, therefore we have specifically chosen venues to fly from where you can get more out of your day.

One specific aim is to provide you with somewhere to get good quality refreshments at fair prices. At both the Sussex and Berkshire venues we have teamed up with the on-site Café / Restaurant where you will have a choice from extensive and very reasonably priced menus. Both sites also have excellent facilities and an outlook across the airfield. Sit back, relax, enjoy your beverages and watch the other activities taking place on the day.

Just a few examples of what is on the menu: bacon sandwich and a mug of tea/coffee - full English breakfast – one, two or even three course lunches – cream tea and scones.

Available in denominations of £5.00, buy your lunch vouchers in advance and make these part of your gift, or use them for your family, friends or other guests attending on the day. Please note, change will not be given for any unused amount.

I am outside of the UK, can I still make a purchase?
Yes of course. We will however only be able to send your experience via email.


Who are Elite Helicopters and Elite Helicopter Flights?

Elite Helicopter Flights and Elite Helicopters are both trading names of the parent company, Solent Helicopters Ltd. Solent Helicopters Ltd is a very long established Helicopter Charter Operator and Flight Training Organisation and is licensed through the Civil Aviation Authority as an Air Operator Certificate Holder (AOC No. GB2055) and a Flight Training Organisation (FTO No. UK/FTO-173).

I’m interested in using Elite Helicopters for company incentive programme?

We can offer all types of incentive programmes, corporate flying days or packages. Please contact one of our operations team to discuss your specific needs or requirements. Tel: 0800 804 8807 or email [email protected]

How is any personal data used?

Elite Helicopters / Elite Helicopter Flights (Solent Helicopters Ltd.) does not pass any information about you to third parties. We are not associated with companies sometimes referred to as ‘preferred partners’. We do not provide marketing information about you to any other companies. Any contact telephone number given at the time of purchase or booking will be retained purely for administrational purposes only. Elite Helicopters do not sell, rent or loan any identifiable information regarding our customers to any third party without your consent. Any information that you give us is held with the utmost care and security. It will not be used in ways to which you have not consented.

How can I contact you?

If you have any questions or comments about our experiences, vouchers, services, website, availability or anything else, please do contact us. Your feedback is crucial to ensuring we continue to deliver our commitment to providing the best possible helicopter experiences and customer service. Click here for contact details