Frequently Asked Questions
Total project costs depend on a variety of factors including the tunnel model, the value of the real estate, and the form of construction (standalone or integrated within a larger project such as a shopping center). We typically see projects come together in the range of $2M-$10M; some of which will be technology cost, some of which will be construction.
Tunnel ‘size’ is measured by the diameter of the flight chamber. Smaller tunnels are generally aimed towards entertainment users while larger tunnels attract sport and military flyers too. The most commonly constructed wind tunnel is 14 foot / 4.26 meter in diameter. This size is also the global standard for indoor skydiving competitions.
This will depend on the tunnel size. It is important to know that first time flyers fly one at a time with an instructor.
We artificially limit the wind speed to 275 km/h (171 mph) for safety reasons. This speed is more than enough for even the most experienced flyers to perform the most advanced maneuverers.
As an owner and operator of over 40 locations, we have a great deal of experience in identifying sites. We will share that knowledge and experience to help you find the best location. Ultimately the decision will always be yours to make. For an overview of which markets are available, please refer to our Available Markets page.
It’s easy. Let us know you’re interested by completing our “Contact Us” form. As the most recognized and largest brand for indoor skydiving, there are many benefits to being part of our global family.
We would love for you to become an iFLY Franchise. Of course, we recognize that in some instances a tunnel will operate under an independent name. Even when our technology is being integrated into an existing or new brand, there are opportunities to co-brand such as “RipCord by iFLY” as seen on five Royal Caribbean cruise ships.
You’ve really hit on an important point here; construction time is dead money and this is why iFLY typically builds so fast, we want you earning at the earliest possible moment. This is why a standard iFLY tunnel will take less than 9 months from ground break to opening. However, your project timeline will depend on multiple factors including the tunnel size, local permit approval processes, and scale of construction. Prototypical, custom, and other fully constructed facilities can come together in less than a year or potentially take longer depending on the nature of the project.
Technology cost varies depending on tunnel size and model. Modular tunnels are designed to be a low-cost solution better suited for smaller markets. Tunnel owners interested in larger markets may wish to consider a more permanent facility which requires a more comprehensive tunnel solution. One thing to note is that you get differing amounts of technology depending what and where you buy. Sometimes you pay more on technology to save on construction. The important question is ‘How much is my completed project’.
Construction costs also depend on the tunnel size and model. A modular tunnel is designed to have minimal construction and will likely be installed in a matter of weeks. Whereas our permanent facilities will require more construction, the cost of which will depend on your building design and technology package. We offer a significant amount of support to help you bring these projects together as quickly and as efficiently as possible. See the point above relating to the cost of the full project.
iFLY provides you with a specialist project manager throughout the process. iFLY has a team of engineers specializing in tunnel construction with vast experience commissioning tunnels around the world. We have a significant amount of technical information to share with you and your team throughout key milestones of your project.
While we typically do not provide financing, we can be creative in crafting deals to help you join the iFLY family. iFLY is now SBA approved for loans backed by the Small Business Administration for projects within the US
Depending on the market location and model, we can support your team by providing construction supervisors.
We accept a manufacturing deposit at the time of contract signing with the remaining balance to be paid prior to shipment.
We have a variety of royalty arrangements which can be discussed during the contract phase.
The royalty is for the continuing use of the licensed trademarks and any other intellectual property. Additionally, future royalties provide a lower cost of entry through a reduced technology purchase price. Becoming a franchisee with a royalty allows you to continually benefit from ongoing innovation and the collective knowledge and practices of our global network.
Working with iFLY, you will be able to tap into over 20 years of safe and profitable operational experience. As the owner-operator of nearly half of the 89 tunnels iFLY has built, we know what it takes to run a successful business. We’ve learned from mistakes along the way resulting in a more tried and true franchise model for you. All tunnels must be operated by qualified staff and we provide you with training for instructors and management.
Your iFLY franchise can be included in national and international campaigns. For example, when we engaged on a campaign with Universal and DreamWorks for the film ‘How to Train Your Dragon’, all of our US tunnels, including franchisees, exercised the option to join. This was backed by an advertising spend (at our cost) of almost $1M.
We can assist in matters related to SEO & SEM, Social Media and best practice on online advertising. We can also provide a tunnel-launch marketing guideline that will assist you with ideas for launching your new business.
iFLY does not provide marketing at a local level as even within our corporate owned-units, local marketing is exercised by the local management team.
Your initial franchise purchase includes training for some instructors. You can hire from the open market, especially for more experienced instructors, or you may wish to add extra instructors into the training program for an additional cost. Depending on your opening hours and revenue projections, we generally recommend a total of 8-12 full time instructors of varying levels.
When you purchase a tunnel from iFLY, you get access to two decades of global operating experience and know-how. We provide 2 weeks of training for an additional cost.
Most iFLY franchisees operate their location independently. Alternatively, we can enter into a management contract to run the tunnel on your behalf.
In a normal year, you should have no need to halt operations for maintenance and we would anticipate you to spend in the range of $15K-$25K for maintenance such as servicing fans, motors, VFDs, chillers etc. Some tunnel owners prefer for iFLY Tunnel Systems to oversee ongoing maintenance and we are able to provide an estimate for this service upon further review of the requirements. Importantly, all routine maintenance can be done outside of normal operating hours.
As part of your iFLY Tunnel Systems technology, you receive 24/7 monitoring of your motors for the life of your machine. This allows us to keep an eye on the equipment and give you forewarning of potential issues. If you need service support, we work with you to keep your tunnel running.
iFLY facilities are fully compliant with the ASTM International F1193-15-Standard and we design and build our tunnels to the highest quality and specifications. We support all our customers in acquiring the appropriate permits in their territories. We have never had a project fail during this process.
To be clear, Indoor Skydiving is a physical activity and you should expect minor accidents as an operator. iFLY has flown over 10 million people, it’s now about 2 million per annum and safety is our number one priority. Our standards are exacting. Our equipment is constructed with future maintenance in mind right down to the Fortress lock-out systems we provide as standard. Operationally we employ a full-time safety team of 6 people in addition to the ranks of examiners, trainers and managers. We created the original training systems and supported the launch of the International Bodyflight Association (IBA), whose sole job is to set training processes, to provide ratings, and to monitor flight safety. We will never cease in our drive to make Indoor Skydiving even safer for all members of the family.
As safety is our highest priority, tunnels designed by iFLY utilize proprietary technology that provides safe descent in the event of a power failure. In fact, we test every tunnel during commissioning where we simulate a full power failure with a flyer at the top of the tunnel.
Typically, depending on the location, market, size of your tunnel, project cost and a variety of factors, tunnels can deliver an ROI in the range of 3 – 5 years. Our modular tunnels could potentially deliver a faster ROI.
We target around 40,000 flyers per year at our company owned locations.
We typically recommend the 2-flight package as the best introduction to Indoor Skydiving and this means you can fly up to 26 core flyers per hour and still leave time for instructor demonstrations to wow the crowd.
Ticket pricing is very much dependent on the local market. We have tools to help you decide how to set pricing that include factors such as peak hours of the day, week, and year.
Yes. We will share a comprehensive business forecasting tool with you.
Any buyer who wishes to commit to a country will be expected to develop the entire territory in-line with our business growth expectations. This will require a financial and contractual agreement. In most cases, it is far easier for a buyer to focus on building and successfully operating their first tunnel and then to expand the business from there.
We offer an area of protection within the franchise agreement called a territory restriction, within which another iFLY cannot be built. We want your business to succeed!