If you’re reading this article, it’s likely that you’re the kind of person who likes to do their research before jumping into anything (pun totally intended)! In this article, we’ll be sharing details revolving around tandem skydiving videos. We’ll cover the following:
Firstly, let’s acknowledge the conflict of interest in doling out this advice. As a skydiving center, we obviously sell skydiving videos, so it would be natural for us to recommend purchasing a skydiving video. We try to keep it real by giving out great info, so let’s lay out the considerations: Budget versus Value.
Budget vs Value – Adding a media package will increase the price of your skydiving experience. Here at Skydive Carolina our video prices are as follows:
| Stills Photography |
Package includes 30-60 digital photos on a FREE USB. Price includes tax.
| Video |
Package includes a fully edited video on a free USB. Price includes tax.
| Video & Stills |
Package includes an edited video and 30-60 digital photos on a FREE USB. Price includes tax.
| Social Media Package |
Package includes 30-60 photos, fully edited video & 1 video clip for social media. Price includes tax.
| The Ultimate |
Edited video and 30-60 photos on a FREE USB PLUS a DVD of your jump and the 1 minute video clip for social media. Price includes tax.
Adding a media package digs deeper into the pocketbook, but if you were to survey the majority of our guests through the years, they would say it’s completely worth it. The reason people say this is because making a tandem skydive is unlike any other experience on the planet. Amusement park rides don’t compare to jumping from a plane from 14,000 feet! Skydiving is often considered to be a major life experience that involves facing a challenge, working through fear, and experiencing great accomplishment. Making a skydive is empowering and having this documented is completely worth it. Adding a media package makes for an expensive day but the value of having your skydiving photos and video is priceless. Aside from seeing an explosion on Instagram, and gaining the admiration of your friends, you’ll look back on your skydiving footage and smile as you recount the special day.
Based on feedback we’ve received since 1986 when we first offered video on VHS, we recommend that everyone gets tandem skydiving photos and video of the experience – the value far outweighs the expense!
Before the introduction of the GoPro, there was only one way to have your skydiving experience captured and that was by hiring a videographer or a “camera flyer” to jump with you and document the entire experience. Today, the most popular media package sold at the majority of skydiving centers around the world is by using a handcam. The reason for this isn’t because the skydiving photos and videos are better, but because it’s more efficient and profitable for the skydiving center. A handcam (most often a GoPro) is worn by the tandem instructor on her wrist allowing for one less seat to be occupied on the plane by a camera flyer. That additional seat can be used by another tandem student or licensed skydiver to generate more revenue and the tandem instructor can make more money per jump by capturing the photos and videos themselves.
Skydive Carolina is one of the few skydiving centers in the US that offers outside video services because we think the pros of outside tandem skydiving video and photography shot by a camera flyer outweigh the pros of handcam.
Footage shot from an outside camera flyer is superior to photos and videos shot from the handcam of a tandem instructor. The primary reason for this is “hairy arm syndrome.” In other words, with handcam, you’ll always have the tandem instructor’s arm in the shot. Having the tandem instructor’s arm in the photo isn’t a deal-breaker, but it’s our feeling that if a guest is paying $100+ for a media package, it would be preferred to not see the arm of the tandem instructor in every photograph.
Below: an example of a handcam photograph – note the hairy arm.
Another negative about handcam is that it’s one dimensional – it’s always a tight shot of the subject and doesn’t offer much perspective spatially. With outside video, the camera flyer can capture the skydive from an infinite amount of angles from above, below and all sides. One of the most impressive photographs during a skydive is the exit shot and these always look the best from the lens of a camera flyer.
Handcam does have one major pro in its favor that outside video can’t offer and that’s footage from flying under parachute.
Below are examples of outside photography taken by a camera flyer:
If having to choose between video only or stills only, we recommend choosing photography. With over 60 high resolution photos to choose from, you can print the photography to display at your office or home and they are great for social media and sharing with friends.
Unfortunately, this isn’t possible because tandems don’t leave the aircraft at the same time. Each tandem pair leaves the aircraft with 5 to 10 seconds apart to create enough separation so that parachutes aren’t opening up too close together causing a safety issue.
Unfortunately, no. The United States Parachute Association (USPA) mandates that no person with less than 200 jumps is permitted to skydive with a camera. Flying with a camera is considered to be a safety issue for inexperienced skydivers and tandem guests alike because cameras are a distraction. Tandem guests have a responsibility during the skydive – it’s why tandems are known as tandem students and not tandem passengers. Tandem students play an active role during the skydive and being distracted by one’s own camera can create safety issues.
In the glory days of Napster, Limewire and CDs, most skydiving centers would give out a music menu for guests to select the music for their skydiving videos. Unfortunately, those days are now over due to smart algorithms that can read mp3s to identify if music has been copyrighted. This is certainly great for musicians, but not so great for those wanting to select the music to their skydiving videos.
At Skydive Carolina, all guests receive their photos and video approximately 30 minutes after their skydives.
No. At Skydive Carolina you can decide whether you’d like to add a skydiving media package at check-in on the day of your jump.
Yes – usually during the early morning or late afternoon. Of course, sunny days are better than cloudy days!
We happily take ground photography of our guests with their spectators and friends before the skydive and of course we take many photos in the field after landing.
Unfortunately, this does happen on occasion and guests are given a refund!
Generally, the media department (Xtreme Media Services) keeps footage up to 30 days in case USBs or DVDs are lost or become corrupted.
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