Helium shortage impacts local businesses, people buying balloons


If you’ve tried to get balloons for a party recently, you’ve probably heard about the global helium shortage.

Many stores are limiting the number of helium balloons you can buy at a time.

Grand Slam Inflatables in Harrisburg says the shortage has really hurt business. The company says some distributors have tripled prices, and people need to travel farther to get the gas.

Helium has other uses, too.

“Helium is used in, as I was told, in MRI machines,” said Brad Levin, of Grand Slam Inflatables. “It’s used in space programs. It’s used in the military.”

Grand Slam Inflatables says it doesn’t foresee helium prices dropping. 

Party City said in a statement that it is working with supply partners to keep helium in stock.

“We are also actively managing supply solutions such as transportable Balloon Time disposable helium tanks which allow customers to inflate their balloons wherever they choose,” the company said.

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