Uncovering a widely-held but false belief: Does less basket capacity mean a more comfortable hot-air-balloon flight?

Uncovering a widely-held but false belief: Does less basket capacity mean a more comfortable hot-air-balloon flight?

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Cappadocia

 

If you’re heading to Cappadocia, no doubt, a hot-air-balloon ride is a must-do. But choosing between numerous operators can be overly challenging. Travellers have shown by their buying behaviour, they particularly search for smaller basket capacity assuming that it would be a  more comfortable balloon flight. Thus, balloon flights have long been advertised with an almost sole emphasis on the basket capacity as an indicator of service quality.

Considering that there is no clear judging criteria about hot-air-balloons on publicly available sources, travellers are likely to be misled by a general misconception that the less the basket capacity is, the more comfortable a hot-air-balloon flight will be. In truth, there is no relationship between basket capacity and personal space per passenger on the balloon. Since basket sizes can be very changeable depending on its manufacturer, basket capacity cannot be used as a benchmark for measuring the room per passenger.

As an illustration, the table below provides information about how much square meters of space is given per passenger on the balloon depending on its capacity:

 

Basket Capacity

Space Per Passenger (m²)

12-passenger 

0,2010

16-passenger

0,2325

20-passenger

0,2505

28-passenger

0,27


As seen in the table, the space per person shrinks as the basket capacity gets bigger. From a consumer perspective, it is natural searching for a balloon operator who provides more space per passenger on the balloon. However, factors like pilot professionalism, operational efficiency and fleet age must also be taken into account when choosing who to fly with as they play a significant role in determining an operator’s service quality. 


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