Private Helicopter Tour Fort Lauderdale. poking my feet out the open door flying over Miami Beach on a sunny day

Epic Helicopter Tour Fort Lauderdale From A Solo Traveler (2024)

Taking a private helicopter tour Fort Lauderdale and Miami might seem like a super extravagant thing to do, but it really is not anymore.

Several companies offer this amazing once-in-a-lifetime view over the famous beaches of Miami and Fort Lauderdale.

Despite a slight fear of flying, I embarked upon this adventure with five-star rated Keen Fly on one of my solo trips to Miami a while back – and I LOVED it! (Once I got over the little bumps above the city and out over the ocean, that is).

Here’s another 5 stars from me; just look at this video!

Affiliate disclosure: I only recommend tours, services and purchases I know and love on this website.

Helicopter Tour Fort Lauderdale

After I was picked up in the little tarmac cart by Keen Fly and arrived at the hangar, it was time for a short pre-flight briefing on the tarmac before we went!

This helicopter is so small!

It literally is a bubble of glass, with just enough space for two people (one of whom is the pilot), and this also naturally provides an amazing view from start to finish!

Pre Flight Briefing On The Tarmac

Me with pilot Tracy, ready to fly from Fort Lauderdale towards Miami Beach
Ready to fly

Pilot Tracy does the pre-flight briefing on the tarmac, and we go through what to do and not to do.

With my purse (which stays on the ground), phone (secured around my neck), feet (when they are not outside the helicopter for a photo shoot), and practical things like that.

You get the security do’s and don’ts that are the pilot’s responsibility, but you also need to be aware of your role inside the helicopter.

We put on our headsets and were off as soon as the tower cleared the takeoff. It’s not like any other takeoff with a plane, as you don’t really need a runway.

You just lift off from right there!

Also read: 23 Best Things To Do Solo In Miami From A Frequent Visitor

The vast view from the glass cockpit of the green water underneath, and the thin strip of white sand along the coast under the blue sky
Flying towards Miami Beach

Helicopter Ride Fort Lauderdale

So we ascend, hover a bit, and then “drive” hovering right above the tarmac along the road system until we can fly away – and head for the coastline.

Flying out over the white sands and crystal-clear water outside southern Florida is stunning, and once we get above water, there is no turbulence. I can see boats below, as well as shades under water of marine life casually going about their day under the surface.

So cool!

We fly along the shoreline, and pilot Tracy tells me all about the buildings and areas we see below us.

This is just amazing!

Doors Off Option Helicopter Tour Fort Lauderdale

Wiggeling my feet outside the open door of the helicopter with a tiny boat in the water under us, with the white sands of the beach far below
The feet-out moment

If you want to fly without doors, there is an extra fee to be able to do that, but let me tell you, you don’t want closed doors.

When you have already invested in this amazing helicopter tour, you really should want to be close to the elements as well, in my humble opinion.

Without the doors, you feel the winds all around, and you will still be told when it is ok to stick your feet out like this, and when not. Safety first always.

How To Book Helicopter Fort Lauderdale

You book your helicopter tour online with Viator like all other normal bookings, but when the booking has gone through, you will need to provide a bit more information as there are some aviation rules.

You will receive a couple of emails explaining everything, one of which requires you to watch a safety video and confirm that you have done so.

Sign the enclosed waiver (if you accept what it says), and send it back signed.

Epic skyline views along the beach on the way flying from Fort Lauderdale towards Miami on a bright sunny day with blue skies.
Heading south towards Miami Beach

Make sure you have detailed directions for the meet-up place, as the Fort Lauderdale Airport is full of buildings and hangars, and where to go may not be intuitive for people who don’t go there every day.

I took an Uber over (who was not a local either), and we spent a few minutes searching and calling to find the right place. All ended well, just a heads-up!

Also read: 7 Best Boutique Hotels South Beach For Solo Travelers From An Expert

Preparation Helicopter Tour Fort Lauderdale

There is nothing special you need to do before the helicopter tour from Fort Lauderdale apart from watching the safety video and signing the waiver beforehand.

The rest of the preparations will be taken care of when you get there. If you want to fly with the doors open, that is an add-on, and you need to pre-book that.

And you definitely want to do that once in your life: wiggle your toes outside a helicopter high above Fort Lauderdale and Miami Beach is bucket-list worthy.

Where Is The Airport In Fort Lauderdale

This map was created with Wanderlog, an itinerary planner on iOS and Android

Private Romantic Helicopter Ride Miami

When you first decide to go up in the sky, make sure you get exactly the experience you want!

If you have a significant other to spoil, you can also do sunset tours or opt for a private romantic helicopter ride with champagne and other amenities.

The flight in the middle of the day under blue skies was AWESOME!

Top-Rated Places To Stay In Miami

Overview photo of the Goodtime Hotel in South Beach Miami, with the stunning pool area with sun loungers and parasols on a bright summer day.

I usually stay in Miami when I visit, because I am kinda in love with Miami Beach! I have also stayed for a long period of time in the Wynwood Art District, which is really charming and has a lot of personality.

Here are some great options for places to stay in Miami, if you feel the same way I do!

Miami Beach

Wynwood Art District

Downtown Miami

Brickell Miami

FAQ’s Helicopter Tours

“I have never done a helicopter tour before, and I have some questions”. A lot of people feel that way, and truth be told, as I had never been in a “civilian” helicopter before, I had some of the same questions myself.

Here are some of the most common questions people wonder about answered.

Are Helicopter Tours Dangerous?

As long as all regulations are followed and you fly with an experienced pilot, helicopter tours are not dangerous.

It is essential that the helicopter tour company has secure safety measures in place.

Also, as a passenger, make sure you are compliant with any instructions you are given before or during the flight.

When everyone holds up their end of responsibility, you will have a safe and joyous experience on a helicopter ride!

Safety Rules For Passengers

When embarking on a thrilling helicopter journey, safety must be of utmost importance in order to relax and enjoy the experience.

To ensure you’re prepared for takeoff and beyond, it’s essential to dress appropriately. Avoid loose or flimsy clothing, such as scarves or bandanas, that winds may sweep away!

Additionally, pay close attention during the mandatory pre-flight safety demonstration when the ground staff or pilot tells you everything you need to know.

And lastly, keep your headset and harness in place throughout the trip – they are not optional!

How to Pick a Safe Helicopter Tour!

It is essential that your tour operator follow the strict guidelines for helicopters to ensure passengers’ and pilots’ safety.

These rules include selecting a reliable manufacturer, having frequent maintenance checks and services done, training pilots adequately, and adhering to industry standards and international standards for business aircraft operations.

If you are worried, you can ask your tour operator all these questions before you make your booking!

Do You Tip A Helicopter Tour Pilot?

The answer to this is that it is not considered customary to tip a helicopter pilot, but – there is always a but.

Helicopter pilots do provide a service that is both as a tour guide and responsible for you having a safe tour and an exceptional experience!

So, if you feel that your pilot went above and beyond to give you all that, a tip will be greatly appreciated! You can read more about tipping helicopter pilots here.

Best Time To Visit The Miami Area

The Miami area in Florida, including Fort Lauderdale (which is not very far away) has a friendly and warm climate all year round—except maybe mid-summer when the temperature can get excruciatingly hot.

This is one of the reasons I love Miami; walking in flip-flops wherever and whenever is one of the perks of this region.

Also, be aware that this area is in the hurricane belt, and you may accidentally visit when a hurricane hits.

The highest risk period for hurricanes is late August to October, during the wet season that runs from June through November each year.

Check out this overview of the weather in Miami from January through the year!

Wrap-Up Helicopter Tour Fort Lauderdale

Wow, this is really a candidate for a bucket-list experience in my book!

Although I have been in helicopters a lot before when I was in the army, it was quite a different experience flying with this tiny little glass bubble close to the elements.

And over such an incredibly beautiful part of the world, like the beaches outside Fort Lauderdale and Miami in South Florida!

Ten points and/or five stars is my final verdict. Just wow!

Related blog posts:

Is Fort Lauderdale In Miami, Or Is It A Place Of Its Own?

6 Great Hostels Miami Beach Florida From An Expert

6 Top-Rated Private Boat Tours Miami Tailored To Your Desires!

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