Frequently asked questions about Tandem Skydiving at the Skydive Wanaka dropzone.
Got a question or two about tandem skydiving at our Wanaka dropzone? Have a look here and please contact us if your question isn’t here.
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Safety Briefing Video
Watch our full safety briefing video and learn about your different camera options:
What is your passenger weight limit and do you have any limitations?
Your weight may not exceed 100kg / 220lbs / 15.5 stone to tandem skydive.
You need to be in a reasonable physical condition to skydive although a
physical disability may not necessarily be a barrier to tandem
skydiving. (You’ll complete a medical statement before your
What’s the minimum age limit?
There is no age limit as such. It is more dependent on the confidence/height and weight of the child and how the harness fits. Children under the age of 12 need to come out to the dropzone, meet the staff and be fitted in a harness before we can confirm that they can jump. Anyone who is under 18 years of age will need the written consent of a parent or guardian.
What’s the maximum age limit?
There is no age limit as such… Our oldest passenger was 92 !! Can you beat that?! So long as you are in good physical health and have a sense of adventure we encourage you to come and see us for an unforgettable experience!!
Where is Skydive Lake Wanaka’s Dropzone?
Skydive Wanaka is based at Wanaka airport, a 10-minute drive from the alpine village of Wanaka, nestled in the heart of the Southern Alps in the magnificent South Island of New Zealand. Wanaka is only one hours drive from Queenstown.
How long will my skydive take?
Your whole tandem skydive experience will take around three hours – this time can be quicker, but can also take longer, especially in peak times.
What do I need to bring?
You don’t need much more than a smile and sense of adventure! We provide a jumpsuit, hat, goggles and gloves… But please wear shoes that won’t fall off in summer!!! Jandles, flip flops etc. and bare feet are a no no. You need something that will stay on your feet during your 200kph Freefall! And in winter you’ll need to wear warm clothes – layers rather than something bulky, please.
What do I wear for tandem skydiving?
Skydive Wanaka will provide your tandem skydiving jumpsuit, helmet, goggles and gloves. You will need to wear sensible, secure footwear and warm clothing for the New Zealand winter. You can wear either glasses or contact lenses for your tandem skydive without any problem.
Can I wear glasses/contacts?
Yes, you can wear your glasses/contacts – you’ll want to be able to take in the views! We give you goggles that will fit over your glasses or contacts. (Please let your instructor know if you are wearing contact lenses.)
Can I jump barefoot?
No. For health and safety reasons everyone must be wearing closed in footwear.
Should I eat before I jump?
Just eat normally… Skydiving should not make you feel sick!
Can my friends and family come and watch me Skydiving?
Yes. We have excellent facilities at our Skydive Lake Wanaka Dropzone, so bring as many friends and family to watch and take pictures!
Can I take my camera in the plane with me and during my skydive?
For safety reasons you are not able to take anything in the plane with you… Cameras can come out during the freefall and hit the instructor on the head! You could end up with a very annoyed or unconscious instructor and neither is desirable. So for safety reasons we say no to taking up personal camera equipment.
Can I go in the plane if I am not jumping?
No. Sorry. Again for safety reasons: everyone in the plane must wear a parachute – even our pilot. And once the door is open everyone in the plane has to jump out, this is why we are not able to take up observers!
Is there any sport skydiving at Skydive Lake Wanaka?
Yes. If you are a sports skydiver you must have a B licence and minimum of 500 freefall jumps. You must bring your current log-book, licences and skydiving equipment.
International skydivers that have a current FAI licence are required to join the New Zealand Parachute Federation. Your skydiving equipment must have a reserve that has been packed within the last 180 days and an AAD.
Skydive Wanaka is a small tandem skydiving operation, so sports jumps are on a sub-load basis. Please contact us for further information or if you are seeking employment opportunities at Skydive Wanaka see our job vacancies page.
Transport from Queenstown?
We offer a complimentary transport service from Queenstown to Wanaka, leaving twice a day. Please contact us direct to book this. If you have your own transport, we recommend driving over yourself – we are only an hour from Queenstown by car. Please remember to call 30 minutes before the bus time to check we are running on time.
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What time are your flights?
We don’t have any set time as we are dependent on weather, air traffic, bookings, etc. We’ll give you a booking time that suits you and you will need to allow at least a couple hours to be with us at the airport.
What time do we have to be at the dropzone?
Please call 30 minutes before your booking time to check on weather conditions and that we are running to schedule. If everything is good then please arrive at your booking time and allow 3 hours for your whole skydive experience. Please note: if you’re coming over from Queenstown on our bus, you must allow 4-5 hours for your skydive experience, as it is approximately 2.5 hours driving time on top of the time you spend once you reach the dropzone.
What time are you open?
The phone lines are manned from 8am – sometimes 7am in summer – until 9pm. We can jump during daylight hours, as long as the weather is good & we have bookings. Please call anytime and leave a message or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you know what the weather is going to do? Today, tomorrow, next week?
The weather in Wanaka is usually pretty good! Wanaka is famous for clear sunny days, our annual rainfall is low and clouds do not generally hang around.
If you would like to see when it may be great to go skydiving then check out our weather page for information and weather links. Remember it is always best to book in advance rather than wait to see what the day holds; we do not skydive if the weather conditions are not favourable!
Remember the weather in New Zealand change very quickly! So keep an eye on our weather page or follow us on Twitter for regular updates.
What if the weather is bad?
We do not jump if the weather is not good: simple. If you are not able to skydive when you are booked we can re-book you later on during the day, or the following day depending on the weather and your schedule. We advise you if you can to be flexible around the time of your jump just in case the weather is not favourable. But the weather is Wanaka is usually pretty good – one of the reasons Wanaka is a great place skydive!
What sort of weather effects tandem skydiving?
Tandem skydiving is very weather dependent and cannot be undertaken in strong winds, or if there is complete cloud cover. New Zealand weather can often change quickly, so we ask that you call us 30 minutes before your jump, to confirm conditions are suitable for tandem skydiving.
Can we all jump at the same time?
We can jump 5 – 7 tandems in our plane depending on how many tandems purchase the freefall video option. Where possible we try and jump you with your friends or family – we can discuss the options with you further when you come out to skydive.
How many fit in the plane?
We can fit up to 7 tandems in the plane. It depends on the video options you choose – camera flyers take up some seats.
How much can I see?
A lot! You have chosen the most visually spectacular skydive in New Zealand… From jump altitude – ESPECIALLY 15,000 feet – you will have 360 degree views of New Zealand’s highest mountains including Aoraki / Mt Cook and Tititea / Mt Aspiring. We’re talking “majestic mountains that tower over” the World Heritage Mt. Aspiring National Park. Mountains where glaciers feed forested river valleys and six lakes (Lakes Wanaka, Hawea, Dunstan, Wakatipu, Pukaki, Tekapo)… You’re jumping into Lord of the Rings country. Just make sure you keep your eyes open!!!!
Is it cold?
The plane flight to altitude is not cold. Once the door is open and during freefall you will feel a bit of a rush of fresh air! Most people are too busy thinking about and enjoying their skydive to worry about the temperature!
That said, it can get a little chilly in the winter months – the price you pay for the new dimension the snow on the mountains adds to the view… A new level of spectacular!
Please wear warm clothing. We will provide you with a jumpsuit, hat, goggles and gloves, and we have spare hoodies, if we feel you are not wearing enough.
What does freefall feel like?
You might think there will be a sensation of falling. Freefalling is more like floating on a bed of air – you have no sensation of actually falling. Freefall is a unique feeling… you just have to do a tandem skydive to experience it!
How long is the freefall?
• From 15,000ft (4,575 metres) – 60 seconds
• From 12,000ft (3,650 metres) – 45 seconds
We recommend that you go to the highest altitude that your budget will allow, especially if you are having a freefall video/pictures combo or tandem skydiving instructor handi-cam video.
Is the tandem skydive landing hard?
Skydive Lake Wanaka use state of the art tandem parachutes that are designed for tandem skydiving. These tandem skydiving parachutes are highly maneuverable and allow slow, soft parachute landings.
What happens if I get up there and I decide not to go?
It is extremely rare that this happens – maybe 4 times in 18 years! But if you decide not to jump there will be no refund, sorry. You and your tandem master will both come back down in the plane. We ensure that before you go skydiving, you are prepared and happy with what will be the best experience of your life!
Has anyone been hurt?
Skydive Lake Wanaka has THE BEST tandem skydive safety record in New Zealand. During our 17 years of operation we have had an exemplary safety record and we are committed to keeping it that way. Skydive Wanaka currently has the BEST safety record in New Zealand.
We are an experienced team of dedicated professionals, our attitude towards personal service and safety means you skydive with the best. We use the latest state of the art parachute equipment which is well maintained and our instructors are hand-picked for their experience and attitude.
Do you jump from higher than 15,000 feet ?
We do not tandem skydive from above 15,000 feet above ground level, which in Wanaka is 16,100 feet above sea level, because we do not believe it is safe. The New Zealand Parachute Industry Association, which we are associate members of, have rules based on safety that do not allow us to go higher than 16,500 above sea level. For more information on the risks involved in high altitude tandem skydiving please do read this document and be informed on your own safety.
Can we both be filmed at the same time?
No, sorry, it is impossible to film more than one person in freefall. Our camera flyers are good. But you’d have to be faster than a speeding bullet to fly between two tandems falling at terminal velocity. We’ll be sure to employ anyone named Clark who applies for a job whose address is Smallville, Kansas, but until then…
We are very happy to film 2 people on the ground and in the plane. It is best that each person has their own video – be the star you always wanted to be! Why share the limelight?
Why Should I pay more and get the freefall Video or picture options?
Tandem skydiving will be the highlight of your New Zealand adventure! Freefall video and digital pictures means that you can relive your tandem skydive over and over again. It is your proof and chance to show the world you have done it! Your smile in freefall is priceless!
What is the difference between the freefall camera flyer Video/Picture USB combo and the tandem handi-cam freefall Video Or Photo option?
The freefall video and picture Combo is taken by one of our creative, experienced cameraflyers who falls with the tandem pair. Our cameraflyer has 2 cameras mounted on their helmet (one video and one photographs). This is the option to choose if you wish to have freefall pictures and an overall perspective of your skydive and scenery. The freefall video is fully edited with a funky soundtrack and comes on a USB including over 40 digital freefall pictures of your skydive.
With the Tandem Handi-cam options, you need to choose if you would like to have either the video option OR the photo option.
The Tandem Handi-Cam freefall video is a freefall video taken by your tandem master with his wrist mounted camera with a very wide angle lens. Your Tandem Master is with you every step of the way including your first reactions once the parachute is open and some of the parachute ride. This is a great option for those on a budget or who do not want any digital freefall pictures.
A similar angle to the Handi-cam video – the Tandem Handi-Cam freefall Photo option is a set of freefall photos taken by your tandem master with his wrist mounted camera with a very wide angle lens.
Can I write stuff on my hands?
You can! PLEASE DO!! But depending on the temperature you will most likely be wearing gloves in freefall. You may be able to film your hands before getting in the plane.
How do I book my tandem skydiving experience?
The fastest way to book your tandem skydive is to book online using our secure booking form or call Skydive Wanaka direct – FREEPHONE: 0800 786 877 (Within New Zealand ONLY).
Book your skydive online and make the most of our current online special.
If you are travelling as part of a New Zealand tour, or travelling with Kiwi Experience, Magic Bus or Stray Travel, your driver or tour guide should be able to assist in booking your tandem skydive in advance. Most New Zealand accommodation providers, such as hotels, motels, backpackers and campsites will also assist you in making a booking for tandem skydiving.
What type of payment do you accept?
Skydive Wanaka accept credit card payments via Visa and Mastercard, Eftpos $NZ, cash in NZ$ dollars and New Zealand Travellers Cheques.
What sort of discounts do you offer?
Our group discounts start at 10 people, a great excuse to get lots of friends to come and skydive with you! And – if you catch the skydiving bug that plagues us – we can offer multi-jump discounts. Contact us to discuss all options.
If I pay online and we don’t jump, do we get refunded?
We ask for your credit card details to secure the booking. We don’t actually charge your card as we are weather dependent. You will pay just before you jump. If for some reason you fail to show up or did not cancel giving at least 12 hours notice we will charge your card with the full amount.
Can I buy a tandem skydiving gift voucher?
Yes. Skydive Wanaka offer tandem skydiving gift vouchers and you do not have to be resident in New Zealand. Simply complete our secure online gift voucher order form and we will post your gift voucher anywhere in the world within 24 hours.
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