Do you want to start a skydiving company but you want to go niche? If YES, here are 10 best small business ideas in the skydiving industry. Skydiving is a well known recreational activity as well as a vocational skill for individuals in highly specialized careers.
In this modern age, many adventurous people enjoy engaging in a competitive sport and recreational activity such as skydiving. This is a form of extreme sports that comes with a lot of risks, but it is not a dangerous activity as you have been thinking.
Skydiving businesses or schools are known to offer a safe introduction to the sport and ongoing training or jump opportunities for individuals who have decided to advance beyond the beginner level. For professional skydivers, starting a skydiving business is a good option.
Aside from sharing their skills to enthusiasts, they can also make additional income. Customers for skydiving businesses are more or less adventurers—or at least want to be seen that way. They can be of any age or gender, but younger (20-45) males are the most common demographic for this type of business.
Coupled with having hundreds of hours of skydiving experience under your belt, anyone looking to start a skydiving business should have the patience, diplomacy and perseverance it will take to find investors and convince community leaders of the safety and value of your operation. A lot of them see skydiving as an extreme sport and will express concerns about legal liability in the event of accidents.
How Do Skydiving Businesses Make Money?
For a skydiving business, the main source of income is the initial instruction and jump fee, which can start at $250-$350 range or more for tandem jumps. Add-on products and services can also bring in additional revenue, from DVDs of the jump to commemorative t-shirts and advanced jump training for certification.
This sport is recognized as being expensive, so rates can be placed high (and must be since your costs are significant). However, profitability is highly variable depending on your location and the niche or demographics you choose to target.
In this business, growth is a mandate for successful small businesses. As a skydiving entrepreneur, it’s imperative to target growth strategies in your initial business plan. Agreeably, circumstances vary from one entrepreneur to the next, however there are several potential areas your business can target to set itself apart in the industry.
Different Types of Business in the Skydiving Industry
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1. Indoor skydiving business
Skydiving can be frightening, exhilarating, overwhelming and satisfying all at the same time. But “Indoor Skydiving” has the double effects on entertainment and sports combination. If your aim is to boost domestic entertainment consumption, and provide a new, high-taste, stimulating and healthy recreational activities, then you have to consider starting an Indoor Skydiving facility.
Indoor Skydiving mostly use vertical wind tunnel that allows customers to experience the freedom of human flight. The skydiving wind tunnels work with powerful propellers which lift the body vertically in the tunnel.
Customers then control their position by moving with hands and legs and can experience the enjoyment of skydiving in much safer and easier environment. This sport can be practiced by children and adults and has many health benefits and much lower medical restrictions.
2. Tandem skydiving business
Tandem skydiving is more or less the most popular type of skydiving business and its customers are mostly first-time skydivers. In this business, a customer will be attached to an experienced skydiving instructor. It’s their job to operate the equipment and make sure the customer have a great time.
Note that in this type of Skydiving business, the customer is referred to as a ‘student’ and not a ‘passenger’. During the 30-minute skydiving brief, they are expected to learn all about the exit position, how to make an arched body position for freefall and the importance of lifting their legs for landing.
Tandem skydiving is a great way to experience skydiving, without having to go through training to be able to do it by yourself. Your customers will more or less relax and take in the views, breathe in the air and experience every moment of this incredible jump.
3. Military Business Training facility
Owing to the increased use of private para-military personnel, there is now a huge market for parachute schools capable of training private security personnel in HALO (High Altitude/Low Opening), HAHO (High Altitude/High Opening) and other skydiving techniques.
You can also tap into this market segment and you have the potential to generate a significant revenue stream from corporate clientele.
4. AFF (Accelerated freefall)
AFF, or accelerated freefall, is the program you can choose to focus your Skydiving business on, especially targeted at new skydivers. AFF is more or less the most efficient way to learn to skydive. Your client will be taught about flying, deploying parachute and flying it to earth, and what to do if things don’t go quite to plan, as part of their ground training.
Then, they will jump accompanied by two highly experienced AFF instructors who will hold them at first but as they progress through the jumps, the instructors will be less active and they will be able to fly independently. However, during their last AFF jump, they will have just one instructor, and then expected to complete a series of consolidation jumps before obtaining their skydiving license.
5. CRW Facility
CRW (usually called as ‘crew’ and standing for ‘canopy relative work’) is all about teaching customers how to fly and handle parachutes. CRW jumpers usually miss out the freefall portion of the skydiving entirely. Instead, they open their parachutes as soon as they leave the aircraft.
They fly very different parachutes to those of other skydivers, and these parachutes tend to be more docile and robust. This enables CRW jumpers to ‘dock’ on one another by hooking their feet around the lines of each others’ canopies (another word for ‘parachutes). CRW can be done in pairs, fours or bigger groups, and often involves building formations using the parachutes.
6. Formation Skydiving Lessons
Formation skydiving is the type we are mostly used to seeing. This is where skydivers fall in a belly-to-earth position (as you do on a tandem skydive) and create shapes – or formations – by holding on to one another’s arms and legs. Formation skydiving (FS) is the next stage of Skydiving class after AFF.
As customers attend this class, they learn how to fly safely with other people and how to control their body in the air. Many skydivers compete in FS competitions. This is usually done in groups of 4 (4 way FS) or 8 (8 way FS) and involves making a set series of formations faster than the other teams. The USA is particularly good at this, holding numerous World Championship titles.
7. Swooping and Canopy Piloting Class
Swooping is the practice of accelerating the descent rate of the parachute by initiating turns. This increased speed means that the swooper is able to achieve greater travel across the ground – plus, their parachutes make a really cool ‘whoosh’ sound as they come into land!
You can start a Skydiving school that teaches this advanced Skydiving knowledge and enjoy a substantial flow of income.
This is referred to as ‘squirrel suits’, a wingsuit makes flyers look like flying squirrels. The wingsuit is just that; an all in one suit that has wings, which the skydiver controls in order to control their descent rate and direction.
Wingsuiters tend to spend longer in the air as they are travelling more horizontally, whereas FS flyers, for example, are falling straight down. Note that there are different types of wingsuits and skydivers also compete in wingsuiting competitions.
9. Auxiliary Services
Note that ambitious skydiving entrepreneurs can also create auxiliary revenue streams. Selling parachuting equipment to on-site cafes or restaurants hold possibility as supplemental profit centres, depending on the needs and buying habits of your customer base.
10. Freeflying Class
Freeflying is the discipline where skydivers learn to fly their bodies in all orientations and on all axis – not just belly to earth. It involves teaching freeflyers how to fly in head up, seated or standing positions. They will also learn to fly ‘head down’ (just upside down).
Often, this Skydiving school will combine all of this into impressive displays, or simply teach divers how to fly around with each other in these positions. Freeflying is a little more difficult to master than formation skydiving and can go to highly advanced levels.
Launching a skydiving business is your ticket to owning a good, stable business if you have the creativity and tenacity necessary to be a successful entrepreneur. There really is so much potentials in skydiving and something for everyone.