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Three Saudis set for sky-high career as hot air balloon pilots

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Three Saudis are bound for a sky-high career as hot air balloon pilots after being sent to the Netherlands to receive their professional license, the Saudi Arabian Ballooning Federation (SAHAB) announced on Monday.

The organization has dispatched the three trainees to the Western European country to receive the European license for professional balloon pilot (EASA).

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It is part of SAHAB’s program to train balloon pilots, to develop the skills of people practicing the sport of hot air balloons in the Kingdom.

SAHAB officially opened its headquarters in Al-Ula in 2019, with the federation saying at the time it aimed to “develop a thriving ballooning community of hobbyists and adventure-seekers within the Kingdom and around the world.”

SAHAB CEO Mohammed Al-Hamoudi said the training program for balloon pilots focuses on the practical aspects through intensified exercises on flying the balloon.

He said the federation is keen on providing people with the opportunities to hone their skills and the necessary training.

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