Where To Get Balloons Filled With Helium

Written By: Jen

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Helium balloons are a great way to celebrate a special occasion. Use them as a decoration for a party, or gift them to someone on their birthday to make them feel extra special (or extra embarrassed, if they’re older).

colorful party balloons

But where can you get helium balloons inflated? Let’s take a look.

Where Can I Get Foil Balloons Filled With Helium?

You can either go to your local party store or supermarket to buy foil balloons – anywhere that sells foil balloons will normally offer to fill them as well. If you’ve bought your foil balloons elsewhere, these stores will normally allow you to inflate them for a small fee.

Some stores may sell pre-filled balloons but most of the time it makes sense to buy a brand new one and get it filled from the tank fresh anyway, since over time the helium will slowly escape to be replaced with air, causing the balloon to sag and sink.

number 16 balloon

Where To Get Latex Balloons Filled With Helium

If you want to buy a lot of latex balloons to fill a party venue, then your best option is to buy a small helium tank and fill them at home. For a small number of balloons, visit a supermarket or party store near you.

You can bring your own balloons to the store and pay a small amount to get them inflated, or buy balloons at the store to save yourself some effort.

Deflated balloon

Best Places To Fill Balloons with Helium

One of the best places to get balloons filled with helium is a party store – these tend to be independent so you’ll have to look for one near to you.

Otherwise, here are some of the other best chains that you can visit to get helium-filled balloons:

1. Dollar Tree

Dollar Tree stores fill up helium balloons for you. If you purchase the balloon in-store or online, you will have it filled for free. You’ll just need to bring your receipt for any balloons you ordered online, as proof.

The store also sells pre-filled balloons for people who prefer ready-made items. If you purchase your balloons in a different store, you will have to pay a fee to fill them at Dollar Tree. Typically, the store charges $1 to fill up a balloon.

2. Walmart

While Walmart stores sell helium balloons, not all of them offer filling services. For those that do, they only blow-up balloons that have been purchased in-store for prices starting from $0.25 depending on the size and type of balloon.

3. Party City

Party City is a popular franchise for party materials, including helium balloons. Almost all stores fill balloons with helium. You can buy balloons at the store or on their website and have them filled for no additional cost.

The store also fills balloons bought at other stores at a small fee, which can vary.

4. Dollar General

Dollar General sells helium balloons and inflates them for the customer at a small fee, usually just $0.50. However, the store does not blow up balloons bought from other stores.

5. CVS

CVS stores fill in-store purchased balloons with helium for free. For balloons bought from different stores, the store may not fill them for you, and if they do there’ll be a small fee involved.

inflating a balloon using a helium tank

How Much Does It Cost to Fill Balloons with Helium?

A lot of stores will fill your balloons with helium for free, if you’ve bought the balloon at the store or from their website. Otherwise, expect to pay anything between $0.50 and $10 per balloon to get it filled with helium.

The price will vary depending on the store, but more importantly on the size of the balloon. Some helium-filled balloons are huge, after all! It wouldn’t be fair to charge a flat fee.

number 5 balloon

How To Fill Helium Balloons for Free?

Several stores will fill up your helium balloon for free if you purchase it in-store. These stores include Party Store, CVS, and Dollar Tree.

You will also get free filling if you buy the balloons from the online shops of these stores. You’ll just need to have a print-out or emailed version of your order confirmation, showing that you bought the balloons. It might also be worth calling ahead to let the store know you’re coming, in case they need to know anything else.

Where To Buy Helium to Fill Your Balloons?

If you want to fill your balloons by yourself, then you’ll need to buy a helium tank. You can buy them at party stores or some other chains, but if you want to order one online you’ll need to buy from a specialist.

That’s because websites like Amazon don’t want to sell tanks of gas – they’re dangerous to ship, and difficult to package correctly. So you’ll have to buy from a website that is experienced in selling gas canisters.

Check out this YouTube video that shows how to fill your own helium balloons.

Helium tanks come in varying sizes, and their prices range between $40 and $250.

It’s only worth buying a helium tank if you’re going to be filling a large number of balloons at home, otherwise you might as well pay for them individually at a store.

Can Helium Balloons Be Filled with Air?

All balloons that can be filled with helium can be filled with air.

However, an air-filled balloon will not float in the air the same way a helium-filled balloon does. This is because helium is a gas lighter than air.

round balloon with number 40 written

To inflate a helium balloon with air, insert a straw into the valve and blow into it.

Keep blowing until the balloon is firm to the touch, as this indicates the balloon is filled with air. If you continue to inflate it past this point, it is highly likely to pop.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Does Dollar Tree Fill Helium Balloons?

Dollar tree has stores all over the country, most of which fill helium balloons. For balloons purchased in-store or online from the Dollar Tree website, you won’t need to pay to have them filled.

For balloons bought in other stores, Dollar Tree charges a fee according to the type of the balloon and the size.

Does Dollar Tree sell pre-filled balloons?

Dollar Tree does sometimes sell pre-filled balloons if you just want to quickly visit the store and buy them in a hurry. It’s better to buy an unfilled balloon and have it filled if you have time, since the helium will last longer.

What is the difference between helium balloons and air balloons?

Because of the difference in density between air and helium, helium balloons can float while air-filled balloons can’t. Helium balloons will cost more than air-filled balloons, and they don’t last as long either – over time, the helium particles will escape and the balloon will sag.

Can you take helium balloons to a hotel?

Many hotels will allow you to take your own balloons with you, if you’re decorating for a party or a wedding. It’s best to check with the hotel before you turn up with a car filled with balloons though, in case they have their own policy.

Final Words

Getting balloons filled with helium is normally really easy, since you tend to buy the balloons at the same place where you can get them filled. If you buy your balloons online, then you can either take them to a store to have them filled, or buy your own helium tank to do it at home.

Only buy a tank if you intend to fill a lot of balloons – otherwise, it’s much cheaper to visit a store and pay a small fee.

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Jen is your go-to expert on all things inflatable, from pools to tents and beyond. A former hot tub rental company owner, she's experienced the ups and downs of inflatables firsthand. Nowadays, she writes practical guides on maintaining and enjoying inflatables. A mom of young enthusiasts, her family's favorite outing is the inflatable fun park!

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