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HeliServicesNZ Fox & Franz
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All reviews snow landing grand tour mt cook these guys helicopter flight awesome pilot highlight of our trip next morning tasman glacier highly recommend this company short flight fresh snow amazing flight awesome experience bad weather once in a lifetime bucket list
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Reviewed 5 March 2018 via mobile

This was an absolutely incredible experience especially as I had never been in a helicopter before but that was all tainted by the extremely poor customer service.

When I first rang I was surprised with how rude the person on the phone was, especially as I was ringing to book something. Instead it appeared my whole phone call was an inconvenience. When I arrived a few days later the customer service was exactly the same despite it being a different person. Not entirely sure why the customer service was so poor especially considering this for a lot of people will be the highlight of their trip.

The pilot was the only person I met while dealing with this company that was any good. He was fantastic and made a real effort with everyone on our tour. I wish I got his name so I could give him the credit he deserves.

All in all an amazing bucket list moment, ruined by the poor customer service.

Date of experience: March 2018
Thank foodguru010390
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael N, General Manager at HeliServicesNZ Fox & Franz, responded to this reviewResponded 13 March 2018

Hi foodguru010390, thank you for reviewing our company. Fantastic to hear your had an incredible experience having never been in a helicopter before.

It is certainly a concern you felt customer service was not up to standard and we have already had a briefing with staff discussing your disappointment. It is such a busy time of the year, we still need to be mindful of our customers and the need to still be as attentive and helpful as possible at all times should never diminish. I thank you for your input and hope that you can come back another day so we can show you our greater customer service. I am pleased to hear your helicopter flight was an amazing bucket list moment.

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Reviewed 3 March 2018

We'd booked the 'Grand tour' which the literature states 'The “granddaddy” of all flights! Explore both the Fox and Franz Glaciers as well as Mt Cook and Mt Tasman. We top this off by landing you on the snow for photo opportunities.'
When we arrived to check in we were advised that the weather was closing in a bit and we might not be able to do the full flight.
We eventually took off about 10 minutes late and did only manage to get onto Franz Josef. Mount Cook was starting to cloud over, and it was good that we managed to land at all. Our total flight time was about 25 minutes.
But all would have been fine had we not been charged the full amount ($455). At no point did anyone mention our flight would be really shortened and there was no mention of a refund.
We decided to go back to the office and ask for a refund. We were refunded $130 each (this took us to the 30 minute flight cost) but it was refunded very reluctantly and we were made to feel like we were being total pests. There were no apologies or anything.
I loved the snow landing, our pilot was really good, but I felt that the company needs a better customer service attitude. I don't think I would recommend them.

Date of experience: February 2018
3  Thank micthemini
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael N, General Manager at HeliServicesNZ Fox & Franz, responded to this reviewResponded 4 March 2018

Thank you micthemini for your Trip Advisor review. I am pleased you were able to get your flight with snow landing even though the changing weather conditions did not allow for your original tour. That is always our goal - to provide the best possible service, safety and value for money. We do refund for everyone that it requires without question and I feel for you when you have felt approaching us has not been easy.

We relish any opportunity to improve the services we provide to our customers and you are more than welcome to email me directly on gm@ffhl.co.nz

We sincerely promote to all staff how it is of paramount importance to communicate with our customers when conditions are changing and I feel in this instance the message was possibly not conveyed to all concerned and for that I do apologise. It is not our intention to charge more than the service provided and we completely understand refunding is a part of our business in ensuring above all, safety, and value for money.

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Reviewed 2 March 2018

We booked in advance but you don't pay until you know you are going on the day. We picked the most perfect day in January, stunning blue skies and a wonderful helicopter flight across Franz/Fox Glaciers, Mount Cook, landing at the top of the glacier - a fantastic experience. Our pilot was so informative and friendly. The reception centre could be a little more friendly however!

Date of experience: January 2018
Thank ZanN_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael N, General Manager at HeliServicesNZ Fox & Franz, responded to this reviewResponded 3 March 2018

Hi Zan N, thank you very much for your review. I am pleased we have taken you to some of the most spectacular scenery in New Zealand and it is very pleasing to hear of your "fantastic experience".

Such a busy time in January, it can be quite challenging to ensure we build an excellent relationship with all of our customers in a short amount of time. We promote often throughout all our sales staff, ground crew and pilots the importance of great customer service, no matter how busy it may be and we will certainly take note for future staff briefings that we must consider all customers equally.

Holding off on payments until check in time is paramount to our great service so passengers have the confidence to make a booking knowing that we will be certain of flying conditions before departure and before payment. I am also pleased we had such wonderful weather and wonderful views for you.

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Reviewed 1 March 2018 via mobile

My tips. Do not book a long way in advance. This activity is so weather dependant maybe book a day in advance but only if the weather is clear sunny and stable. Plan your visit to the Fox and Frank Josef area so that you have two bites of the cherry say arrive lunch time day one leave afternoon day 2. If the weather is bad day one you still have the option the next morning. In the Main Street in Frank Josef there are several helicopter flight companies offering basically the same ride with similar prices. We just went in the different companies until we found one with space with the shortest wait as the weather was starting to turn.
We went in Alpine Adventures Heliservices NZ in the Main Street in Frank Josef the guys were really friendly and positive. They asked us which flight we wanted we went for the mid priced on with about 30 minutes flight time with a snow landing but responded to the fact we wanted to go ASAP so within minutes they put us on a couple of spare spaces on the 40 minute flight which was about to leave at no extra cost. That’s what I call service. If booking I would always go for the mid priced ride with the snow landing I guess the practice of filling spaces at short notice may be common so you might also be lucky.
The pilot very professional and engaging I really recommend this company.
Final bit of info parking is really easy on the Main Street of in the local car park from arriving in the town we were in the air within the hour with no booking.

Date of experience: January 2018
1  Thank T8583RIdavidr
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael N, General Manager at HeliServicesNZ Fox & Franz, responded to this reviewResponded 3 March 2018

Thank you David R for your wonderful review. I am very pleased you were lucky enough to find space within a short time and thank you for noting our office crew as friendly and positive. We work hard to promote great customer service at all our bases. Also some great advice to allow extra time in the area in case of any weather changes. Great to hear about your pilot being so professional and engaging.

Some great advice to allow some extra time to ensure the best weather opportunity and we do encourage booking at least 2 days in advance so you will not miss out. No payment is made until check in time 30 minutes prior to departure.

We thank you 100% for your recommendations and helpful tips for other visitors.

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Reviewed 27 February 2018

My partner and I visited Fox in February 2018, and we were crushed when our helihike with Fox Glacier Guiding was cancelled due to low hanging clouds. Fox & Franz Josef Heliservices were located in the same establishment (I believe they provide the helicopter rides for Glacier Guiding's helihikes) and we managed to place ourselves on a helicopter ride to Fox + Franz Josef the next morning instead.

On the morning of our flight, the staff conducted a safety briefing before we took a short bus ride to the launch site. There were 4 of us to a helicopter and my partner and I were up front (with by far the better views) with the pilot. We were fitted with headphones which enabled us to hear the routine commentary from our pilot. The helicopter first flew over Mount Cook where the views were breathtaking and our surprise at being there was far at the back of our heads. It next made its way to Fox Glacier where we landed on the snow and stood around in awe at the vast whiteness of our surroundings. After around 10 minutes of snapping all the photos we wanted and a mini snowball fight, we re-boarded the helicopter (taking the back seats this time). The pilot pointed out a group doing the helihike far below as he brought us back to the launch site.

When we enquired about the mix-up in the locations we were brought to, the counter staff apologised and informed that the Fox + Mount Cook was a better combo than Fox + Franz Josef as Mount Cook was at a higher altitude. My partner and I decided not to pursue the matter as the prices of both combos were the same and we were happy with what we saw.

We were initially apprehensive of booking with Fox & Franz Heliservices as their parent company, Alpine Adventures, had some bad press, but none of the other operators in the area had availability due to it being the Chinese New Year peak period. We found the service passable but felt that all the staff (including the pilot) lacked enthusiasm and passion. One positive thing to highlight was that the pilot took photos of us with our cameras even though the company also developed their own for purchase.

All in all, my partner and I would recommend the activity (even considering the price) as the bird's eye views of the glaciers were simply incredible, but we would suggest tourists check out the other operators before deciding on which to go with.

Date of experience: February 2018
Thank Adrenalinetravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael N, General Manager at HeliServicesNZ Fox & Franz, responded to this reviewResponded 1 March 2018

Thank you Adrenalinetravellers for taking the time to review your experience.

It is unfortunate the HeliHike was cancelled due to weather conditions, but i am pleased we were able to offer you a scenic helicopter flight option for the following morning.

It is true the Fox Glacier and Mount Cook flight takes you to a higher altitude than the Fox and Franz Josef "Twin Glacier" flight. For clear views of Mount Cook the weather would have been superb as this is New Zealand's highest peak and requires the best weather conditions. Many days during February this year have seen nice, clear weather in the mornings but deteriorating into the afternoons so the decision to re-book for the next morning was a good one.

It was pleasing to hear you were very happy with what you were able to see and it was a highlight to have the pilot take photos of the two of you with your own camera. And thank you for recommending the activity.

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