More bounce to the ounce
With summer time fast approaching and kids getting out of school soon means parents are searching for fun to be had to keep them entertained.
It’s hard to keep children entertained all summer long while the parents work. Of course there are parks, swimming, play dates and summer programs. But, what about when all that fun winds down, what then?
More parents are looking at inflatable bounce houses for their children to have fun in the sun. More and more you see them showing up in yards everywhere.
With all the newest styles, there will be one to make every kid, (and even parents), happy with all day play right out their back door.
But, as with all things, even bouncy houses come with stories of bad news of children getting hurt, some even loss of lives.
Lately the news has been covering the story of a bouncy house that was picked up and carried a long distance from a strong wind gust. Inside the inflatable were 3 small children.
Stories such as this has happened over the years with reports of children falling out, sadly, losing their young lives.
Is having an inflatable for children to use at any time a good idea? The ones made for homes are so light that a strong wind picks them up and tosses them hundreds of feet in the air.
Then you have to think of the expense of buying a heavy duty commercial inflatable. Those can run way into the thousands of dollars.
Is it more feasible to rent an inflatable on days there will be adult supervision around? Here are things for you to consider before renting.
The whole picture of renting:
- Rental companies use a standard way of renting out bounce houses. The typical way is by 4, 6, 8 or all day rentals.
- Depending on the company, the rates can vary from $10.00 per hour up to $80.00. The average being $30.00 to $50.00 as the common price per hour.
- For a one day rental of a simple standard inflatable the cost is between $100.00-$350.00 per day. This is only for one with jumping area only. This inflatable is the standard 15 X 15 X 15. The more common being the Moonwalk inflatable.
- The more to the inflatable, the more the cost. Those that are more elaborate are going to cost much more on an average. The castles, water slides, splash areas or climbing walls, have an average cost of $250.00 to $675.00 per day.
- If you REALLY want to go all out, there is the castle combo. It is a 5-in1 inflatable. This massive monster has a jump area, climbing area, obstacle, basketball hoop and slide. The cost at different places, 8 hours for $475.00.
Included with rentals
- Every rental company includes in their price the delivery, full setup, take down and pickup.
- Most inflatables can be set up on grass, flat or concrete areas. Grass areas are better for children due to fewer injuries.
- Gravel or dirt is not acceptable areas for setup.
- Before the delivery of any inflatable, the company is responsible for cleaning and sanitizing.
- All rental companies are responsible of carrying liability insurance. Be sure to ask for proof before they set up on your property. This is to cover any expenses due to personal injury.
- The standard bounce house ranges from 8 to 15 ft.’ Depending on the weight regulations, 3 to 10 children can use the bounce house at one time. Any time there are children inside the bounce house, supervision is required.
- The amount of children allowed at one time may depend on the company rules and regulations.
- Most companies are going to seek an upfront deposit reserving the day you are requesting the bouncy house for. This amount is usually 1/2 of the total cost.
- Some companies charge an additional delivery fee if the miles are out of the range advertised. Other companies offer the total cost including delivery.
- Depending on the set up area, electricity can often be a problem. Normally the bounce houses have power cords that are 50 - 75 ft.' long.
- If a generator is needed, rental for one runs on an average $95-$125.00 per day. Something to consider when choosing setup is to make sure power outlets are handy.
Cancellation policies are a huge concern when renting a bouncy house. Each company’s policy is different when it comes to weather conditions. One thing is for sure, you do not want to set up and use any bounce house in rain. Many companies will take this into consideration.
Reasons for cancellation other than weather, gives the company rights to keep up to 1/2 of the deposit if not made by a certain time. The time is usually within 48-72 hours. Even then there is sometimes a cancellation fee of $25.00
For those that really have a good time and make a big mess without cleaning the bounce house, get ready to shell out at least $200.00-$250.00 for cleaning.
Items such as candy, cake that stains, silly string, gum all these things will cost to remove them.
Some companies really know how to make a parent really happy. Along with the bouncy house, for a starting price of $30.00 you can have an attendant to watch your kids while you are away.
There are many companies that also rent out other items that make life simple for you.
Many companies rent tables, chairs, popcorn machines, snow-cone machines, and cotton-candy machines. For full party needs some offer water games, food equipment, karaoke machines, even clowns.
As you can see there are many advantages to using a rental company for entertainment. The main advantage to owning one would simply be to own one.
The headache of having all the maintenance and worry of kids having access to a bouncy house is something to definitely look at. If you do bite the bullet and purchase a bouncy house, be sure and buy one that is sturdy not just one that can easily cause harm or even death. Bouncy houses offer tons of fun, just do it wisely!