27 Feb 2024

Looking forward to the FAI Ballooning Commission (CIA) Plenary in March 2024, Lausanne, Switzerland

By Hiromi Furukawa (Japan), Balloon Pilot and CIA Officials Subcommittee and PMR member

In March 2024, the FAI Ballooning Commission (CIA) plenary meeting will be held in Lausanne, Switzerland in the Maison du Sport International (MSI), where the FAI Secretariat is located. Not far from the famous Olympic Museum, the MSI is home to 25 international sports federations, 10 sports organisations and 15 companies working in the field of sport: a great environment for collaboration and networking.


Subcommittee and working group meetings are scheduled for the 13th and 14th March, followed by plenary meetings on the 15th and 16th March.

There are also fifteen small group meetings ahead of the plenary. Their members work on the specific topics within their committee in preparation for sharing the work details with the plenary.

A break by the lake, at the Plenary in Lausanne 2015

Lausanne, Switzerland

The last time the CIA Plenary meeting was held in Lausanne was in 2015.  We hoped to have it in Lausanne in 2020 as well but suddenly the Covid-19 pandemic changed our plans, and so it was held online.

Lausanne, Switzerland and lake Leman
Views over the lake

In the meantime, there have been changes in the city of Lausanne.  The Hotel Aulac where most of the participants of CIA plenary stayed in the past, by Lake Leman (sometimes also known as Lake Geneva), no longer exists. This is a great pity as it was a really nice location and very convenient place, just a few steps from the Metro station, Ouchy.  

I hope the Fondue restaurant downtown where we used to go in the past is still there!  We will see in March what else has changed in Lausanne...


Swiss fondue in Lausanne
There's nothing quite like a real Swiss fondue...

Last year we were lucky enough to have the opportunity to fly in hot air balloons for the first time in the history of the CIA plenary, thanks to our host, Blaser Swisslube. We will see if we are lucky enough to get a chance to also fly in Lausanne.

join us and Contribute

Apart from sentimental feelings of past visits, would you like to know about the CIA meeting? You can refer to the CIA Autumn Newsletter published in November 2023 for further details. Sign up for the mailing list here

As I wrote last year, you are welcome to join the CIA meeting with your suggestions, if you would like to contribute to anything, or even if you are just curious to know what is happening behind the scenes of ballooning competitions. To join the meeting, please contact to your country’s delegate and register to attend the meetings here.

Debbie Spaeth, Chair, CIA Public & Media Relations SC (PMR) encourages anyone who has an interest or expertise in any of the areas covered by the various CIA Subcommittees (SC) to consider getting involved with CIA:

“While non-delegates usually attend at the own expense, it is very helpful to meet balloonists from around the world to share ideas and information at the Plenary meeting. During the year, sub-committee working sessions are also held online via Zoom meetings, so if you have the interest but the concern about the cost of attending, we would be pleased to welcome you as a remote attendee.”

If you have any questions regarding the meeting, we are more than happy to reply.

We look forward to seeing everyone in Lausanne!

The Maison du Sport International, Lausanne, Switzerland