Royal Caribbean International has begun reaching out to guests who have booked a hot air balloon ride as part of their visit to Perfect Day at CocoCay to let them know that the attraction will be closed for maintenance.
Refunds for pre-booked rides are being processed, but it appears the colorful ride may be closed for several months.
Balloon Ride Now Closed on CocoCay
Guests booked on upcoming cruises that include visits to Royal Caribbean’s private island destination in the Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay, are being notified that the “Up, Up, & Away” balloon ride attraction will be closed during their visit.
“Just like in your home, our attractions need some TLC, too!” the notification email reads. “Up, Up, & Away at Perfect Day at CocoCay will be temporarily closed for some routine maintenance.”
The closure notification is only being sent to guests who have pre-booked the balloon experience. Refunds are being automatically processed back to the form of payment on file, and if the experience was booked with an onboard credit, that credit is being reinstated to the guest’s account.
Details about the nature of the “routine maintenance” have not been announced. It is possible the balloon may be upgraded with new operating controls, different materials, or other enhancements to make it a more unique experience for returning guests, or to improve its operating performance.
How Long Is the Closure?
No exact dates for the closure of Up, Up, & Away have been released, but guests who have pre-booked the experience and have received the closure notice have reported a window of at least several months.
As of this writing, guests booked for the hot air balloon ride have reported cancellations of their booking from mid-August through at least late October.
It is possible that the closure only impacts select sailings that intersect with a planned work schedule, or the attraction may be closed completely during the next few months as the maintenance and possible upgrades are performed.
In the coming weeks, many ships in Royal Caribbean’s fleet are scheduled for visits to CocoCay, including Mariner of the Seas, Adventure of the Seas, Independence of the Seas, Freedom of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas, Wonder of the Seas, and more.
About Up, Up, & Away
Up, Up, & Away is a helium balloon experience at Perfect Day at CocoCay. While not strictly a “hot air” balloon, the 10-minute experience is very similar as guests rise up to 450 feet above the island for the most amazing 360-degree views in the Bahamas.
The balloon is tethered for optimal control and to regulate its motion and distance and the balloon’s basket is wheelchair accessible.
The ride is a gentle one, and cruise travelers of all ages can enjoy the experience. Pricing varies based on guest age, cruise ship capacity, visit date, and other factors.
Full adult prices apply for adventurers ages 13 and older, discounts for younger guests from ages 4-12, and cruisers age 3 or younger can ride for free with a paid adult. There are no height or weight restrictions for Up, Up, & Away.
Operated by professional balloon pilots who undergo rigorous training, the adventure does depend on weather conditions, local winds, and other atmospheric and meteorological factors to safely and efficiently operate.
Visitors to CocoCay often report that the balloon is not able to operate, as upper level winds can dramatically impact the balloon even on what seems to be a perfect weather day on the island.
The balloon can accommodate roughly 30 guests per ride, and often sells out quickly. To save a spot, guests booked on a cruise visiting CocoCay are urged to made advance reservations online or through the cruise line’s app as soon as possible. If space is available, guests can book their ride while on the island.