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“Breathtaking!”

The Helicopter Line West Coast
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US$223.37*
and up
Twin Glacier Helicopter Flight from Franz Josef
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US$223.37*
and up
Fox Glacier and Mount Cook Helicopter Flight
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US$173.73*
and up
Franz Josef Neve Discoverer Helicopter Flight
Ranked #7 of 11 Tours in Franz Josef
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Discover the magnificent phenomenon of the glaciers. Experienced helicopter pilots share their knowledge whilst overflying the dramatic expanse of the Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers and snowfields, exposing extraordinary colours of ice flow, ice caves and pinnacles in this largely inaccessible alpine region. All flights feature a snow landing. Alternatively combine a scenic helicopter flight with an unforgettable guided helihike amongst the glacial ice formations with the professional and experienced Franz Josef Glacier Guides.
Reviewed 7 September 2017

We had 2 of our flights cancelled when we were in Queenstown due to the weather. So we decided to continue our road trip and just randomly stop and enquired when we reached Fox Glacier counter. We wanted to take our 4 years old to ride one of his favourite transport. And it not only, impressed him but us too! I was excited when I was chosen to sit at the front. The scenic flight was beautiful and exciting! The pilot, staff at the Fox Glacier counter and the chatty funny driver that drove us to the helicopter was friendly and we enjoyed every moment we had there. Worth the bucks!

Thank DeAceFamilie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TotallyTourism, Front Office Manager at The Helicopter Line West Coast, responded to this reviewResponded 14 September 2017

Hi DeAceFamilie,
Your review is fantastic and we thank you for this. We understand how frustrating the weather can be in New Zealand but thrilled your random stop in Fox Glacier was good weather and that your flight was beautiful and exciting. We are pleased you found our customer service friendly and enjoyable. Our flights are definitely worth taking as you see so much more of our National Park than you would walking from the ground. Once again, Thank you for your review and we hope the remainder of your trip was as exciting as our Glacier Flight.
Kind Regards, The West Coast Team

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21 - 25 of 292 reviews

Reviewed 7 September 2017

Definitely do this if you have the chance! Many helicopter flights are unable to go because of bad weather. (We tried on five different occasions during our trip in November 2016, but were able to get only one time where the weather allowed us to go.) It's a bit expensive, but it's so phenomenal. I really can't say whether one company is better than any other. We tried to do research, but they all seemed to be more or less the same. We were happy with the Helicopter Line; they gave us an amazing experience. Flying over the glaciers is stunning; landing on one and walking around is even more incredible!

Thank Alisco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TotallyTourism, Front Office Manager at The Helicopter Line West Coast, responded to this reviewResponded 14 September 2017

Hi Alisco,
How disappointing that the weather inhibited you flying the first time you visited us, but it seems your second visit to New Zealand proved successful with the weather. It always plays a huge role in whether we are able to fly but we are glad you found our flight phenomenal. It is an incredible experience getting to fly over the glaciers and land on the snow fields above them and it thrills us to know you found the experience we gave you amazing. Thank you for your awesome feedback.
Kind Regards, The West Coast Team

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Reviewed 4 September 2017 via mobile

We arrived in Franz Josef at about midday, aiming to take a scenic flight to the glacier. We were aware that the weather was closing in and opted to take a flight at 13.10. Kamil booked us in, weighed us and did the safety talk. We were then escorted to the helicopter by Vicky who warned us that the weather was worsening and we may not land. (We were a party of four and had the helicopter to ourselves as a family group. )We decided to take that gamble and were expertly flown by Brooke to touch down on the glacier. He was most informative on the trip there and back and we had ample time to take photos on the glacier. No payment was taken until after our flight. It was a great experience and although it was expensive, it was thoroughly worth it. Thank you team!

Thank samab120
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TotallyTourism, Front Office Manager at The Helicopter Line West Coast, responded to this reviewResponded 14 September 2017

Hi there,
Thank you for your brilliant feedback. We are so thrilled that you had a fantastic flight with us here and that Vicky, Kamil and Brooke gave you that experience despite the weather closing in. We do our best to keep clients informed about the weather and any potential changes such as possible landings, so it seems your gamble payed off and the weather stalled to allow your landing. Thank you again for your awesome feedback and we hope the remainder of your holiday was just as spectacular.
Kind Regards, The West Coast Team

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Reviewed 27 August 2017 via mobile

Thank you to the wonderful team at The Helicopter Line for an unreal scenic flight.
If you are in Franz Josef this is a MUST DO to see the Glacier.
The service was professional and friendly and we were made to feel safe the entire excursion.
I did the twin glacier trip which included a landing. We landed at the top of the Fox Glacier with views of the second highest mountain in NZ. There are no real words to describe the surreal mountain paradise.
If you are thinking of doing a scenic flight, these are the guys to go with!
Thanks again to Scott, Vicki and our pilot Duncan for an unforgettable experience.
10/10.

1  Thank Bayleigh29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TotallyTourism, Front Office Manager at The Helicopter Line West Coast, responded to this reviewResponded 31 August 2017

Hi Bayleigh,
Thank you for your awesome review. We are so glad you enjoyed your twin Glacier with us here at The Helicopter Line and that you found our service to be professional and friendly. We strive to ensure that all our clients feel welcome and that they feel safe when they are flying with us. We hope you pass your amazing experience along to your friends.

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Reviewed 25 August 2017

Overall, I had a fantastic time, and if you want to experience the glacier, a heli-hike is certainly the way to go (rather than merely viewing it from afar in the valley). I had walked on a glacier before, but thought it was super cool on Franz Josef that we got to crawl/walk through ice caves/tunnels and just really experience the glacier. The staff were super friendly, constantly had our safety in mind, and overall this company runs a great operation. However, I wish we had more time on the glacier itself and I wish there was less standing around. From my research, I think other companies may give you more time on the ice, although I think Helicopter Line may have been more affordable, so that's just something to consider when choosing a company. When on the ice, I understand there's going to be some time spent waiting for other people to crawl through the caves and take pictures, but at the end of the tour, we must have waited for a good 15 minutes for the helicopter to arrive. Again, this certainly allowed ample time for picture taking, but it just seemed like the company's time management was a bit off.

A few other things to note. They give you what basically amounts to an extra large fanny pack to carry supplies in, so you're not allowed to bring backpacks or camera bags. They do this due to space limitations on the helicopter, which is totally understandable. That being said, if you have multiple lenses, be sure to wear clothing where you can comfortably fit and carry your gear. Lastly, they have clothes available for you to wear (pants, coat, hat, boots, etc.). I would strongly suggest using their stuff. For boots, they have durable pairs that work well with the crampons. It's also highly likely you'll catch one of the crampon spikes on your boots at some point, so it's better to do that on their gear than your own. Same thing for the pants and coat. Since you'll be crawling around on the glacier, it was nice to have their durable gear to take the brunt of any wear and tear. Lastly, when they say arrive an hour before the tour, make sure you do that. Even though they run a smooth operation, it still takes longer than you think to get all of the gear and paperwork sorted out.

Thank Jason G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TotallyTourism, Front Office Manager at The Helicopter Line West Coast, responded to this reviewResponded 31 August 2017

Hi Jason,
Thank you for your excellent and thorough review. We are so pleased that you enjoyed your Hike up on the ice. We agree that it is the best way to get up close and personal with the ice. We are so thrilled you found our staff super friendly and that we ran a smooth operation. We do have the one hour time slot for check-in as it gives us ample time to check the group in, and gear them up without rushing anyone so we know every client has the correct gear and will be stay dry if the weather changes. The time spent up on the ice is 2 hours, but not all this time is spent walking as guides need to sometimes cut the track, pause to take photos and experience the ice caves, if there are some. We cannot guarantee that every trip will get to experience ice caves as the ice changes every day. Some groups walk faster than others which may be why you waited for 15 minutes or so for the helicopter at the end of the trip. We will look into this and see if we can improve. Getting to the helipads a little before the helicopter is due, also allows you time to remove crampons and get those final pictures before the helicopter comes in to fly you off the ice. We hope you enjoyed the rest of your trip around New Zealand and had a safe journey home.

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