bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]

Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]

Listen to this Podcast Episode about Skydiving

Welcome to another thrilling episode of “Tick It Before You Kick It,” the podcast where we share the ultimate adventure bucket list tips, guides, and stories to inspire your next big leap.

I’m your host, Alexandra, and today we’re diving into the heart-pounding world of bungee jumping!

In this episode, I’ll be sharing my firsthand experience of taking the plunge in the stunning landscapes of New Zealand.

Despite it being my first bungee jump, I embraced the challenge and learned invaluable insights along the way.

From preparation tips to what to expect on the day, this episode is packed with everything you need to know before you make your own daredevil jump.

So, if bungee jumping has been on your bucket list, stay tuned for a comprehensive guide to conquering your fears and making that leap!

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
Bungee jumping for the first time in New Zealand.

In This Episode…

  • The basics of bungee jumping with AJ Hackett
  • My experience with bungee jumping
  • What jumping 440+ feet actually feels like
  • Showing your bungee jumping video
  • Bungee jumping vs cliff diving vs skydiving
  • How bungee jumping is more mental than physical
  • Tips for going bungee jumping
  • Who would I recommend bungee jumping to

Important Parts in the Show

  • 0:08 – Welcome to the Show!
  • 0:40 – What is AJ Hackett?
  • 1:42 – My Experience with Bungee Jumping
  • 1:58 – The Kawarau Bridge
  • 2:46 – The Nevis Bungee
  • 3:19 – The Logistics of Bungee Jumping
  • 6:47 – What It Feels Like to Jump
  • 9:48 – The Video Package
  • 10:06 – Bungee Jumping vs Cliff Diving vs Skydiving
  • 11:36 – How Bungee Jumping is More Mental than Physical
  • 12:58 – Tips for Bungee Jumping
  • 17:02 – Who Would I Recommend Bungee Jumping to?
  • 17:51 – Closing Remarks

Show Resources

Read the Bungee Jumping Article

YouTube Video (Watch me Bungee Jump 440 feet!)

Travel Resources

Full Podcast Transcript (Episode 5: Bungee Jumping)

Hey, there thrill seekers and adventure junkies!

Welcome back to another episode of “Tick It Before You Kick It” – the podcast where we explore the wildest, craziest, and the most exhilarating experiences that you can add to your bucket list!

I’m your host, Alexandra – your favorite mermaid and traveling blogger. Today we are diving – well, more like plummeting – into the world of bungee jumping with the legendary AJ Hackett in New Zealand!

So, if you’ve ever wondered what it feels like to take that leap of faith then you are in for a treat!

Obviously, I’m going to be talking about this because I myself went bungee jumping with AJ Hackett.

What is AJ Hackett?

So, let’s kick things off with the basics. Where exactly is AJ Hackett?

This is in New Zealand and these guys are the pioneers of commercial bungee jumping.

These guys have been doing this since 1988. So you know you’re in safe hands.

Fun fact: they actually are the first place in the world that started commercial bungee jumping.

Now, I know that they have several locations now because they have expanded all throughout New Zealand.

My jump actually took place in the scenic Queenstown in New Zealand, which low-key I would kind of move to, not gonna lie. Because it’s the ultimate playground for adrenaline junkies!

AJ Hackett is a legend in the world of extreme sports! AJ Hackett himself was a pioneer who made bungee jumping what it is today.

This company had a solid reputation for safety and innovation and [are] constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s possible, which is why I ended up going with them.

Because it looks crazy and it’s not the safest activity…

So, I just wanted to make sure that for my first time bungee jumping ever and me checking this off of my bucket list…I wanted to make sure that I was in good hands.

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
Getting all geared up to take the leap bungee jumping!

My Experience with Bungee Jumping

Now, let’s chat about my experience with bungee jumping and what it was like.

So when I went to New Zealand, I knew that I wanted to check off of my bucket list, as I previously said. When I was choosing my options for AJ Hackett, I had to choose between the Kawarau bridge and the Nevis bungee.

Kawarau Bridge Bungee

Now, the first one! This was like a tamed scenic option. Of course, it’s still gonna be scary because you are bungee jumping, but you’ve got the beautiful mountainous background with the river!

They also had an option where you could actually dunk yourself into the river, which I don’t know if that sounds fun to me. I’d probably still do it!

I feel like this is probably a good step for people who are not sure that they want to go fully into bungee jumping, but they still want to check it off their bucket list and maybe get some bragging rights.

I don’t always do things for bragging rights, but I’m gonna do this one for a bragging rights…because this was really scary!

The Kawarau bridge is a 43 m or 141 foot dive and all things considered? It could be a lot worse.

Plus, you got some really nice New Zealand scenery to look at!

The Nevis Bungee

Now, the second one…the Nevis Bungee…is much higher and much scarier.

Instead of jumping off a bridge, you actually jump off of a platform that is suspended between canon.

Of course, because I’m me…I had to do the scarier one! This baby is the highest in New Zealand at 134 m and 440 feet and it is 8.5 seconds of pure terror!

So again, this is the one I naturally went with because…you know…I’m just a wild mermaid.

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
There’s the little suspended platform…and that little dot is me…

The Logistics of Bungee Jumping

Now, the logistics! I was picked up in the center of Queenstown. We went on a little bus and then we ended up going to the first stop.

I got to see a few jumps. It was actually really fun to see the jumps. A couple of my travel partners that I had met along the way actually did this jump and it was really really fun to go and watch them and support them.

At this point I was thinking, “Why did I not do this one? Because this one looks scary! So what is mine gonna look like?”

Onto the Nevis Bungee

Then after we were done with that I stepped on the bus again, tried not to eat, tried not to think about what I was about to do and then we got to the Nevis bungee.

There wasn’t a lot of people there. There was a lot of people at the first one! They were all hyped to go bungee jumping!

The Nevis one? There was, like, five people there. And this was the point in which I started to panic. I was like, “Why aren’t more people doing this?! I am concerned…”

Anyway, I ended up buying the photo package, I ended up buying some socks that said “no fear” (as if that was gonna help me at all).

We did a safety briefing. Actually, one of my good friends ended up doing this with me and then another couple actually ended up getting engaged! It was so fun!

So, we waited and then there was this little tram. Again, we weren’t doing this off of a bridge. We were doing this on a platform that was suspended in the air.

If you’re not exactly sure what I’m talking about definitely make sure to check out the blog post that goes along with this and the show notes because you can kind of see what I went through as far as getting out there.

Heading out to Jump

Anyway, as I was on this little tram that was taking me out to this platform that was suspended 440 feet in the air…my heart was just pumping at this point!

Now, I’m an adrenaline junkie! I love things like this! However, this was just a wee bit intense for me…ya know?

We got to the end and I ended up going third or fourth (which again was not exactly good for my nerves because I got to watch my friend and the couple go before me and jump off of a giant platform in the middle of New Zealand).

My Turn to Jump

Now when it came to my turn, they sat me in this chair. They got me all suited up. They got all of the straps on.

Again, just putting so much faith in these strangers but they seemed like they knew what they were doing. And they seemed like they were having a good time…so I trusted it because that’s logical.

I was nervous. You know, I wasn’t really nervous before I went skydiving and I wasn’t really really nervous before I went cliff jumping, but as a little bit nervous before this.

But I was still OK. There was still composure. It was all good and then I stepped out onto the platform.

It was like every single piece of instinct in my body said, “Uhhh…nope! Absolutely not. You should not be this high!”

It just hit me all at once that I was gonna have to jump off this platform from my own free will. Fortunately, this feeling did not last very long. It was probably 10 seconds before he said, “OK jump!” and I did!

Now after I jumped, as I said, the free fall was about 8.5 seconds.

After the jump

We’ll talk about what that feels like in a minute, but you bob up and down a little bit. After that first jump, it’s pretty fun!

Then there was this little handle that I had to reach up and grab and then that brought me from an upside down position to a sitting position so that I could just enjoy the ride in the view up as they reeled me up.

However, I was that one person who didn’t reach the handle and I ended up just getting reeled up like a fish…which is so ironic cause I’m a mermaid! You get it?

They brought me back down, I’m pretty sure my heart exploded, and I had adrenaline rush for, like, two days. Cool.

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
On the edge of the platform waiting for the green light to go bungee jumping.

What Does it Feel LIke to go Bungee Jumping?

Now, let’s talk about what you’re wondering. What does bungee jumping that height actually feel like? Well, let me tell you.

As I said, once I got to the platform I could see all the way down. It was an unobstructed view all the way to the ground. My instincts kicked in and said, “No no no! Please back away from the edge! You’re gonna die!”

It’s so funny because before this I actually looked up Nevis bungee and I looked up some people doing it. I could see the fear, like the pure fear, in these people‘s eyes. And [I] – being an arrogant adventuring adrenaline junkie – was like, “OH! What losers!”

Okay, I didn’t say losers but I was like, “Oh! That’s not gonna be me! No way could that be me?”

I got to the edge of that platform? Let me tell you – that was me!

You Judge Until It’s You!

All these people freaking out and you laugh at them on social media and you say, “Oh my gosh! That’s so funny they’re freaking out and they don’t wanna jump!”

Let me tell you – you get the edge of that platform and there is something biologically that occurs in you. That is like, “You are gonna die! Please don’t do this! This is not normal. This is not natural!

Your mind says, “Please! I say “no” to the bungee! No no no!”

I wouldn’t even consider myself to have a fear of heights. Personally, I don’t have a fear of heights. I think they’re cool. It’s fun. I have no problem with it.

Still, as soon as I got to that platform my whole body tensed up! You can kind of see it on the video (which again link in the show notes because I made a YouTube video about this).

You can kind of see that I’m trying to hold it together, but not very well.

However, when I did look at these videos, I did see a couple where they freaked out on that first jump.

Promising myself I would jump

I told myself that I wasn’t going to do that! I told myself beforehand that I was going to go on this jump and just jump! That whatever I was feeling, whatever panic, fear, or terror that I was feeling…I was not gonna think about it.

I was not gonna be that person who hesitated and I was just going to jump! And I did.

I was really actually very proud of myself. I did jump right away! No hesitation…and then it was the most intense fear stricken 8.5 seconds of my life.

No relief…just absolute pure adrenaline surging through my body!

If you would ask me what those 8.5 seconds felt like? I’m not sure I could answer because I was just so in the moment and honestly so fear stricken that I just couldn’t even think, breathe, scream, or do anything.

So, if you are going to bungee jump…be prepared for this. It is like the most intense drop-y ride you will ever feel in your life.

As I said, once you get that initial drop done, it’s pretty fun from there. You kind of bounce a few times and then you (theoretically) pull the handle and then you just enjoy the view on the way up.

But that first jump? Holy guacamole! That was something that I have never experienced before.

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
The first second of my bungee jump in New Zealand.

Is the Video Package Worth it?

Now, I have the video from this and I’m gonna be honest…it’s the video that most people ask to see of all my travels.

They say, “Show me the bungee jumping video in New Zealand!” and I say, “OK…”

Then they watch it and their jaw hits the floor and they say, “Oh…no,”

Bungee Jumping vs cliff Diving vs skydiving

Then the next question they ask me is: Is this similar to skydiving? Is it similar to cliff jumping?

Is Bungee Jumping similar to cliff diving?

I would say it’s more similar to cliff jumping. However, I think it’s ultimately more scary than cliff jumping because with cliff jumping (every time I’ve done it personally) I’ve always done it feet first.

However, it is very different in my experience, might be different for some travelers, but in my experience, it is very different jumping off of like 20 or 30 feet into water feet first…then swan diving headfirst 440 feet down! Way different!

But I guess it’s kind of the same sensation in your stomach. You know that feeling when you’re on an amusement park ride and it kind of feels like your stomach is coming up through your throat?

Personally not my favorite sensation in the world.

Is bungee jumping similar to skydiving?

Now skydiving? Is it comparable to skydiving? I would argue: no, not at all.

It might seem like it’s comparable, but I think that they’re so different in the sense of the sensation that they bring.

Also, that with skydiving, unless you’re certified, you have a tandem buddy.

So, when I was skydiving and we were on the plane, and we were sliding down the benches to hurl ourselves out of the plane, it was my choice obviously because I was there, but I was also strapped to another individual and they kind of push you out of the plane.

However, with bungee jumping, you are doing it. You are alone and you have to make that mental decision to jump, which leads me to my next point.

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
Going skydiving.

How Bungee Jumping is More Mental than Physical

I would argue that bungee jumping is actually more of a mental challenge than a physical one.

This is because it takes a lot of willpower to actually push yourself to jump. As I said, your body is saying, “No no no! Danger! Turn back! Turn back!

You have to be mentally strong enough to jump by yourself. There’s no one that is going to push you out except you.

I think that although it is super scary, this is probably the number one reason that I would recommend bungee jumping for people.

Afterwards, you feel so empowered! You think to yourself, “Oh my gosh, I actually just did that. I had the mental strength and the willpower to jump off of a platform even when everything is telling me not to!”

There’s something about it that is just so fulfilling and so empowering and kind of your confidence a little bit you’re like, “OK, if I can do that, I can do everything! Cool!”

Physically, all you need to do is jump. Mentally, you are literally battling your instinct to say safe. The moment that you’re standing on the edge looking down? It’s a showdown between your adventurous spirit and your survival instincts.

Overcoming that mental barrier is actually what makes that jump so rewarding. I’m all about adrenaline (that makes it rewarding too), but this mental accomplishment is really what made bungee jumping stand out to me when I was checking it off of my bucket list.

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
Getting reeled in like a fish because I couldn’t reach the handle.

Tips for Bungee Jumping

Next, let’s talk about the tips for bungee jumping.

I don’t think that you need to go to New Zealand to bungee jump. You can apply these tips anywhere that you go bungee jumping.

1. Don’t Think, Just Jump

My number one – the most important thing that I can recommend is to jump…right away!

Do not think about it. Do not let the fear outweigh your excitement. It’s gonna be scary, but you just need to turn it off because if you let fear control you, you’re not gonna make it.

It was so funny because when I went to this Nevis Bungee and they were giving me all these briefs, I had to sign this huge document document that said that if I didn’t jump that I wouldn’t get a refund.

That was in a very nice way. I’m pretty sure that they threw some profanities – really funny profanities – in there about how they weren’t gonna give you a refund if you were a wimp.

I looked at these videos people who get out there they get on that ledge and that survival instant kicks in and they freak out!

ONce You Start thinking About it, It’s over

They start overthinking and they start panicking and then when they go back for second time to go jump and try again? It’s even worse and the longer you delay your jump…the worse it is going to get.

They actually explained this to us as well. They were like, “Please don’t overthink it. Just do it! Just jump!”

As much as you can just suppress that survival instinct and go for it, you have a higher chance of actually jumping.

If you start doubting yourself and doubting the system and start freaking out and start panicking. Odd are you probably aren’t gonna jump the longer you wait.

So, my biggest, biggest tip is just do not think about it. Don’t think about it the entire time.

You can think about it and over analyze it and overthink it afterwards. However, when you’re in that situation, just jump!

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
Bungee jumping for the first time.

Test Out that Free falling sensation Beforehand

Number two, I would actually recommend trying out the free fall sensation before you do this.

You can do this at an amusement park. Ya know, like Tower of Terror at Disneyland? You can feel that sensation.

I’m glad that I experienced it beforehand because no matter what you felt in your life of that sensation….this is going to be probably 10x more intense than what you’re used to feeling.

So, if you don’t like that sensation…don’t go bungee jumping! It is not for you.

Try skydiving cause you don’t really feel that as much. Bungee jumping is a very, very intense activity on your body and you will feel it. Trust me.

It kind of felt like everything in my body was shifting and twisting, and all my lower organs were now my upper organs and my upper organs were now my lower organs.

I love this feeling. Can you can you tell? I love it.

But that is free falling and if you don’t know what free falling is, I wouldn’t recommend going crazy for your first time. Because at the end of the day you wanna enjoy this.

Although [bungee jumping] was terrifying I still enjoyed myself. And if you hate that or you feel like you’re gonna throw up, this is probably not the activity for you.

And you know what? That is perfectly fine!

Get the Photo Package

Next, if you can, get the photo package or choose a company that has a photo package.

As I said, this video was a hit. I still watch it sometimes and I’m like, “Wow.”

Especially if you don’t think that you’re gonna do this again. I’m not sure that I would unless maybe it was one that was taller? Just to do it for the adventure! Am I okay? Why would I – never mind. I probably wouldn’t like it, but I still do it.

If this is a once-in-a-lifetime thing for you, you wanna spend the extra money and you wanna get the photos!

Other Small Tips

Other ones – just trust the experts listen to their instructions.

Choose a good company. Make sure that you’re staying safe. Similarly to skydiving, you might not be able to control everything when you are physically bungee jumping, but you can control who you go with and that you’re going with reputable company.

This is why I went with AJ Hackett – no complaints. It was great! Scared the crap out of me, but it was still great!

And again, just wear comfortable clothes!

Don’t eat too much because of that sensation.

Most importantly, just enjoy the moment. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience! You need to savor every single second of it!

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
Checking out other parts of New Zealand after my bungee jump.

Who Would I recommend Bungee Jumping to?

Next, who would I recommend this for?

I would go as far to say that I would only recommend this if you are an adrenaline junkie, a thrill seeker, or somebody looking to push your boundaries both mentally and physically.

It’s also great for anybody who is wanting to conquer their fears and experience something that’s truly unique.

Maybe this is something that you are using to conquer those fears and if that is you…I salute you!

I’m gonna be brutally honest with you. I have done some scary, borderline insane, things in my life. This is up there. It really is. It’s one of those things, again, where I’m super adventurous but I’m just not sure I do it again.

I’m glad that I did it. I’m glad that I checked it off but I’m not sure that I would willingly be like, “Oh! Let’s go again!”

It was just really intense.

closing remarks on Bungee Jumping

Are you ready to take this leap?

If you are…definitely check out the show notes for more information on how to book your jump with AJ Hackett if you’re in New Zealand. Or just anywhere!

And if you’ve already taken the plunge, please please please share your bungee jumping photos with me on social media [@thebucketlistmermaid] because I’d love to cheer you on in your epic moments! really cool photos.

I’m here to pump you up for the adventure!

That’s all for today’s episode of Tick It Before You Kick It: Don’t Think, Just Jump.

Thank you for tuning in and remember: life is an adventure so just get out there and make it unforgettable!

If you’d like this episode of my terrifying recounting of the bungee jumping and AJ Hackett in New Zealand…don’t forget to subscribe on your favorite podcasting platform and check out the rest of my content on the thebucketlistmermaid.com!

bungee jumping, Bungee Jumping – Don’t Think, Just Jump [Podcast Ep. 5]
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