If your kiddo’s birthday is coming up, you probably want balloons for the party. If you’re asking yourself, “Where can I buy balloons and helium in Germany?” keep reading!
Language Barriers — or Lack Thereof
First, let’s talk about the language barrier — or lack thereof. Helium is an element (as in Periodic Table of the…), and the word is exactly the same in English and in Germany.
The word for “balloons” is “Luftballons” (think “99 Red Luftballoons”).
If you want to ask if a store carries helium and/or balloons, you can ask, “Haben Sie helium und/oder luftballons?”
“Haben Sie helium und/oder luftballons?”
Buying Balloons in Germany
There are party supply stores in Germany, but you might not have to travel that far to find what you need. If you’re just looking for basic, primary-colored balloons, I’ve seen them at Kik (like an American Dollar Store) and Edeka (a Germany grocery chain), so I’m sure that other similar stores would also carry them.
If you want to shop on post, you can, but your selections might be more limited. Even a small PX will usually carry the very basic birthday balloons and crepe paper ribbons. If you’re lucky, they might even have one of those “Happy Birthday” signs made of hinged-together colored letters. 🙂
Buying Helium in Germany
You can find helium at the PX, as well, but expect it to be pricey. Just like gasoline, helium is more expensive overseas than it is at home. Prices can fluctuate, so be aware that your balloons may not cost the same amount to inflate from one year to the next. Currently, our PX is charging $1.75 per balloon, which sounds expensive until you price helium on the economy.
If you want to buy or rent a helium tank, contact your local German hardware store. The one in our town charges €45.99 for a disposable, all-inclusive (including balloons) helium tank that has enough helium inside to fill the 25 regular-sized balloons that come in the box. Larger tanks can be rented for upwards of €200, but don’t always include the attachment you need to connect the tank to the balloon.
Balloons Make the Party More Fun!
If you’re wondering where to buy helium balloons in Germany, don’t let the language or cultural barriers stop you. Local grocery or discount shops and a stop at the PX or your local hardware store should be all it takes to find brightly colored balloons and enough helium for your party. Remember to budget for helium that’s quite a bit more expensive than in the U.S., though. Here’s to hoping your son or daughter’s German birthday party is a ton of fun!