2018 Balloon Festivals in the USA
Hot air balloon festivals are held annually, throughout the year, all over the USA and the world. We are currently working on updating our calendar for 2018 balloon festivals (the ones with actual dates have been confirmed and the others just list the month that they were in this year), to be held in 25 states across the USA. We will be adding to this list and updating our embeddable calendar until the end of 2017. The list view is sortable by balloon festival name, state, and date. If you do come across one that we missed, please link to it in the comments below and we will try to get it added before the 2018 balloon festival season begins.
2018 Albuquerque Balloon Festival
The Largest Hot Air Balloon Festival in the World!
The largest hot air balloon festival in the world, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, takes place in October each year in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The 9 day long Balloon Fiesta has over 500 participating balloons each year. Here is a terrific blog post about the 2015 Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta with tons of photos.
The Balloon Glow is a Magical Sight!
The finale for many of these balloon festivals is the “night glow” or “balloon glow” event. At predetermined signals, the pilots blast the propane burners, releasing a burst of fire into the balloon. The balloons “glow” like huge fireflies or Chinese lanterns, often accompanied by fireworks … it is a truly magical sight.
2018 Balloon Festivals in the USA
This is a calendar of all of the USA 2018 Balloon Festivals that we have been able to confirm to date. (Check back at the end of 2017 for our final updated 2018 graphic.) Of course, you should still double check their websites and social media profiles to make sure the event hasn’t been canceled. We will be updating this calendar each year, so we hope you will link to us and share! The embed code is available underneath.
Embed This Calendar!
Here’s an easy embed code, just drop it into your website! You’re free to display our 2018 balloon festivals calendar on your website; however, the license we grant you requires that you properly and correctly attribute the work back to us with a link to our website by using the embed code provided below. The balloon festivals calendar will be updated each year automatically!
<div style="width: 100%; text-align: center;">
<img src="http://www.townandtourist.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/balloon-infographic-sm.jpg" alt="Balloon Festivals Calendar" /></a>
<a href="http://bit.ly/BalloonFestivals">Balloon Festivals Calendar</a> by <a href="http://www.townandtourist.com/">Town & Tourist</a>
2018 Balloon Festivals in the USA
Click header links to sort ascending/descending alphabetically. (You may have to click it twice.)
*Billed as the oldest and most well-attended FREE Hot-Air Balloon Event in the World.
Add/Update Your Balloon Festival!
We are always on the lookout for more balloon festivals to add to this list and we want it to be as complete and correct as possible. If you are the organizer of a balloon festival and would like to see it added to this page, or if an existing event needs a correction, please let us know by filling out the form below.
Advertise Your Balloon Festival!
We rank in the Top 10 Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) for “hot air balloon festivals” and hundreds of variations of that search term, including many city searches. Whether you are the event organizer, sponsor, or a local business, you will receive laser targeted exposure and traffic for readers interested in attending your town’s hot air balloon festival.
If you are interested in advertising your balloon festival or other local business on this page for the 2018 season, please fill out this form and we will contact you with details.
2018 Balloon Festival Tourist Tips:
- Balloon festivals are usually free or very low cost; however, donations are generally accepted.
- These events attract thousands of people (the Albuquerque International Balloon Festival attracts close to 80,000 a day) so expect traffic and delays getting into and out of the parking lots. Get there early – and the bigger the balloon festival, the earlier you should plan to arrive…. even as much as two hours early.
- Dress appropriately. Remember that it is generally colder in the morning or evening and it will be even more chilly on an open field.
- Drones are a BIG no-no. Don’t do it. Just don’t.
- Smoking is another big no-no.
- Bring your camera! If you share your photos on social media, be sure to use the official event hashtag … and we would love a hashtag as well so we can share your photos with our audience! Our hashtag is: #TownTourist
- Most hot air balloon flights occur just after sunrise or just before sunset or both. In colder months or climates, you might also see hot air balloons flying in the daytime; however, you should refer to the hot air balloon festival’s schedule of events page on their website for specific times.
- Balloon flights and activities are usually weather dependent. Ideal wind speeds are 3-5 mph and if winds increase beyond 8-10 mph, or if it is raining, it is unlikely that the balloons will be able to fly.
- The festivals themselves usually do not schedule or book balloon rides. Many participating pilots and balloon operators book their rides independently. There is usually a list on the festival’s website so you can contact them and ask if they accept passengers. While prices vary, you should probably expect to pay $175-225 per person.
- Beware of anyone trying to sell you gift certificates for hot air balloon companies. Always call the company directly to purchase a gift certificate.
Attention: Balloon Festival Webmasters
After two years of trying to gather the most up-to-date information about these balloon festivals, we have a little advice and best practices to share with the webmasters of the balloon festival websites listed above:
- PLEASE update your websites immediately after your event with the dates for the following year. It is very difficult to keep this list up-to-date if we have to search the web or keep checking back. If you aren’t sure of the dates, a simple “Next Event: May 2018” put up immediately following your balloon festival would suffice.
- PLEASE do not change your website’s URL, or if you do, please set up a redirect. Refrain from using the year or “19th annual” in your URL so you don’t have to constantly change it. Part of good search engine optimization (SEO) is attracting links … and you break them if you change your page’s website address.
- Make it easy to keep your information current on your social media sites by saying (for example) “Always the last weekend in May”.
- Link to your social media channels from your website.
- Include your official hashtag on your website.