First Skydive - Tandem Skydive Or Solo Skydive?

September 16, 2023

Tandem Skydiving Versus Solo Skydiving

If you are reading this, we are assuming you’re ready to skydive – congrats! This article will touch on solo skydiving questions, like how to skydive solo, and how many tandem jumps before solo skydiving are needed. Every dropzone is different! Let’s jump in by looking at some basics of what differentiates solo skydiving from tandem skydiving, and which one we think is better to kickstart your skydiving journey.

Tandem Skydiving in CT

What Is Tandem Skydiving? 


What is the difference between skydiving and tandem skydiving? A tandem skydive entails a total novice (you!) being secured by a harness to the front of a highly experienced and professional skydiving instructor (us)! Tandem skydiving is the safest way to complete a skydive and only takes about 20 minutes of pre-jump training. On the other hand, solo skydiving training can take anywhere from 4-6 hours, which only accounts for the time spent pre-jump briefing on the ground. 


Q: What Are The Tandem Instructor Requirements? 

A: Tandem instructors must have the following: 

  • 18 years of age or older
  • 3 years in the sport of skydiving 
  • Minimum of 500 skydives
  • United States Parachutes Association (USPA) issued D-license
  • FAA Class III Medical License
  • Successful completion of an intensive and comprehensive tandem instructor course 
  • *not required on paper, but required by most dropzones* A positive attitude and passion for sharing the big, blue world of skydiving with others is a must-have for Skydive Danielson instructors! 

Tandem skydiving landing in CT

Why Do People Choose To Go Tandem Skydiving First? 


Tandem skydiving is the safest, easiest, and cheapest way to complete a first skydive – plus, most dropzones actually require at least one tandem to be completed before pursuing the path to learn to skydive solo. 

  • It’s easy(ish)! Training before tandem skydiving is minimal in comparison and although the actions of the student matter, the instructor ultimately has control of the skydive.  
  • It’s statistically safer! Wait … is tandem skydiving safer than solo skydiving? While skydiving solo is awesome, it is statistically safer to go tandem skydiving. Solo skydiving is a bit more involved and it can be spooky up there all alone. Jumping with someone who’s done it more than 500 times takes some pressure off, catch our drift? 
  • It’s cheaper! Our tandem skydiving cost starts at $235 when you book with a group. The time it takes to gain a license to skydive solo is stretched out and is rarely paid for upfront, but it typically runs you about $3,000. Skydiving in any capacity is priceless

Landing after a tandem skydive

Is A Tandem Skydive Part Of Solo Skydiving Requirements? 


We strongly recommend a tandem skydive before embarking on our solo skydiving training program. Why? We see the first tandem as a trial run that answers the questions, “Do I like skydiving?” And, “Can I handle the excitement of skydiving?” If the answers are yes (which they most likely will be!), then you can confidently start our Accelerated Freefall Program, which begins with two training tandems.

Why two training tandems? Well, put it this way, you’re supported – but solo – on your third training jump. These training tandems are different from what you may have experienced during any just-for-fun tandems. During these jumps, you’re soaking in a whole lot more than the view! Being attached to a pro, you gain hands-on, one-on-one instruction about how to fly the parachute, take the controls for part of the jump, and learn how to land your canopy safely.

Although that first “fun tandem” is encouraged rather than enforced, we’ve found that people completing their solo skydiving training tend to be more successful by doing one for fun before the serious learning starts. The first tandem can be done with a group of your friends or for an exciting milestone. And then, we get down to business!

Learn to skydive in CT, MA or RI

What Are The Solo Skydiving Requirements? 


Solo skydiving requirements are pretty minimal: 18 years old, a maximum of 215 lbs, and 1 “for fun” tandem jump (and of course a willingness to learn)! What about medical issues? If you have any health concerns, such as heart, back, or shoulder issues, we recommend double-checking with your doc about skydiving – this is something we recommend for our tandem students, too.  

Student earning their license to skydive at Skydive Danielson

Q: Why Is There A Skydiving Weight Limit

A: Safety, safety, safety! Every restriction, regulation, and recommendation in the skydiving world is put in place to prioritize safety. Although skydiving is an intrinsically risk-filled sport, the community does everything possible to acknowledge, address, and mitigate risk. Skydiving is a beautiful experience that we are happy to share with all the curious souls of the world in the safest way possible! 


 Ready to achieve the dream and jump full-send from a perfectly good airplane ALL ALONE!? Book your tandem today! Blues skies!