Choosing a Chiang Mai Zipline
How to go About Choosing a Chiang Mai Zipline
Choosing a Chiang Mai zipline can seem like a daunting task, at the last count there were a dozen or so zipline companies in Chiang Mai all of which on the surface look very similar to one another but scratch beneath the surface and there are many differences between each Chiang Mai zipline. Through first hand experience of all ziplines in Chiang Mai I have prepared the below table highlighting what is included for each one.
What to Consider?
Safety is generally the number 1 consideration when choosing a Chiang Mai zipline and with several well documented incidents and even deaths at Flying Squirrels and Zipline Skyline Adventure there is good reason to choose carefully. All of the below advertise a similar commitment to safety and standard of equipment with Petzl being the brand of choice. Ziplines such as Eagle track heavily promote the use of a double zipline, which frankly speaking is of little benefit to ones safety since a single cable can hold 2 tonnes plus meaning there is very little chance of a cable breaking. Flight of the Gibbon is the only zipline operator that uses an anti rollback cam reducing the chance of rolling back upon reaching a platform whilst Jungle Flight uses a good system for the abseil whereby it is impossible to let the rope drop in freefall and the person is lowered via a mechanical system. Some of the more budget ziplines such as Dragon Flight have very worn equipment which whilst may not be a detriment to the integrity of the material, doesn’t fill you with confidence. It is worth reading visitor comments on Trip Advisor for other first hand experiences of zipline safety.
Prices of each Chiang Mai zipline vary greatly, from just under 2000 THB for Dragon Flight to 4199 THB for Flight of the Gibbon. Whilst it may seem difficult to gauge the reasons for the gulf in pricing, there are many subtle and less than subtle differences in each tour. The duration of tour for one, Eagle track for example is over in just a few hours so whilst 2400 THB seems a great deal on the surface, the fact is the zipline takes place close to the city in a not so attractive area whilst Flight of the Gibbon, Jungle Flight and Dragon Flight are in more remote areas in much more beautiful rainforest settings. Upon arrival at Flight of the Gibbon you can see significantly more investment in the general area which is very pretty and far more staff to attend to ones needs including dedicated greeters, nature specialists and sky rangers. Other ziplines operate on the bare necessities with minimal staff to assist. Despite this it should be pointed out that all staff I have encountered at all zipline operators have been very professional.
When choosing a Chiang Mai zipline I suggest to consider what you want out of the day, if you want a more polished experience in perhaps the best setting, and if you’re looking for the most eco-conscious company then Flight of the Gibbon is the one for you. If you are looking for a fun day out with no frills but plenty of Instagram opps then either of the other ziplines are fine with perhaps Jungle Flight being my pick of the bunch. Also check out my comparison of Eagle Track vs Flight of the Gibbon for a more detailed insight into both of these zipline companies in Chiang Mai. I have summarized each of the main zipline companies in Chiang Mai in the table below.
|Flight of the Gibbon||Jungle Flight||Eagle Track||Flying Squirrels||Dragon Flight|
|Price||4199 THB||2300 THB||2400 THB||2699 THB||1700 THB|
|Duration||7 hours||6 hours||4 hours||5 hours||6 hours|
|Lunch||Several dishes, vegan and vegetarian included, special requests allowed||Simple buffet style||Simple buffet style||Simple buffet style||Simple buffet style|
|Longest Advertised Zipline||800m||1000m||300m||600m||756m|
|Bi-lingual Welcome Greeters|
* This is a personal opinion based on observation of environmental awareness. As Flight of the Gibbon is a pioneer in this area, other websites often copy content with no real understanding of the term ‘eco’ and as such I consider them to be inactive in this area. Flight of the Gibbon is highly active in areas such as tree planting, plastic consumption reduction and its under privileged children program which enables hundreds of children to experience the zipline every year.