We have answered the most frequently asked questions
about Antarctica Sightseeing Flights. If you have a question
that isn't answered here, please
question to us.
How long is
the flight and how long do you spend over the ice?
The average flight duration is 12 hours (depending on your
departure point). About three hours into the flight we
usually see the first sea ice and icebergs. We spend four
hours over Antarctica and the remaining four hours traveling
There is a lot of
activity on board, especially on the way to and from the
continent. Antarctic experts who have lived on scientific
research bases give talks on the environment and history,
and will answer all of your questions. Video screenings and
live radio link ups with the scientists on the research
bases show what it is like to live on Antarctica. A cockpit
mounted camera transmitting through the video systems on
board gives you a pilot's eye view for the entire flight
including take off and landing.
What time do
you depart and return?
Departure and return times vary slightly depending on your
chosen departure point.
How does the
seating rotation work?
Every passenger (excluding Economy Centre & Business Centre)
is allocated two Boarding Passes. At the half way point of
the flight, an announcement is made asking passengers to
move to the seat listed on their second boarding pass.
Business and First Class passengers will be seated in a
window seat for half of the flight and in a next to window
seat for the other half. Economy Premium and Economy
Standard passengers will have a window seat or the seat next
to a window seat for half of the flight and an aisle seat
for the other half of the flight. Economy Centre & Business
Centre seats do not rotate. For a simple diagrammatic
explanation please go to
Seating. It is important to note that while over
Antarctica, most passengers get up from their seats and move
about the aircraft, allowing everyone on board to enjoy
excellent viewing opportunities. The aircraft flies in long
sweeping 'figure 8s' over various points of interest to
allow these spectacular sights to be viewed from both sides
of the aircraft.
Can I reserve
a particular seat?
You may select a seating class but not a particular seat.
Seats are allocated on the best available at time of
reservation, however final seating allocation is done the
evening before departure when final bookings are confirmed.
opportunities do I get from a centre seat?
While the Economy Centre seats do not rotate, ample viewing
can still be achieved by walking to any available window
space or exit zone. There is a fantastic atmosphere of
cooperation, with most passengers sharing the experience.
How much can I
see from the Economy Standard section (over the wing)?
The viewing of Antarctica is out, not down from the
aircraft, so excellent viewing can still be achieved from
How does the
weather affect the flight?
We have 18 different approved flight plans. Our Captain
views the satellite cloud picture on the morning of the
flight and selects the route with the best visibility on the
day. We have offered excellent viewing on each of our 73
How low do you
|When over Antarctica we fly at approximately 10,000 feet
above sea level, which brings us within 2000 feet of the
highest ground. This altitude provides excellent viewing
while still respecting the wildlife habitats at sea level.
Do you get to
walk on the ice?
We do not land on Antarctica, primarily for
environmental reasons. Antarctica is as close to a pristine
environment as there is on Earth. The activity of Antarctica
Sightseeing Flights has been approved by all Antarctic
Treaty nations. Most importantly, you cannot see the
spectacular views available from the aircraft when you are
on the ground.
Can you see
penguins and other wildlife?
As most Antarctic wildlife lives at sea level, 10,000 feet
below the aircraft, we cannot see them in any detail. This
altitude is required to protect the various species. To
experience the wonders of Antarctic wildlife, you would need
to join a cruise, which we can assist you with.
Can we take
photographs and videos?
Absolutely! All cameras are welcome. We are always getting
feedback from passengers who are delighted with their
photographic results - and these are amateur photographers!
We even provide a few fun onboard photographic opportunities
where you can try on Antarctic clothing or hug a 'life size'
penguin. The information pack you will receive after you
book your flight contains photography hints and tips.
Do you get
meals and drinks on the flight?
Even though this is classed as a domestic flight, we provide
international standard service on our Qantas 747 - 400. Two
full meal services, snacks over the ice, and complimentary
bar service is provided.
Am I too old
or too young to join the flight?
People of all ages are welcome on the flights, however we do
ask you to consider the following.
Do I need my
- Children under
16 years of age must travel with an adult. If you are
travelling alone, you should be able to move around the
- Parents should
remember that this is a very long day for younger
You will not need a passport, as this is classified as a
domestic flight and you will board the flight at the
domestic terminal. However you will be required to present
some sort of photo ID at check-in.
Do I need
Travel insurance is recommended. Special premiums are
available. Enquire when booking.