What happens to all those balloons?

Visitors at the arrival hall of Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv can’t help but notice the balloons clinging to the ceiling.

By Israel Today Staff |
BEN GURION INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Photo: Nati Shohat/Flash90

Israelis love to bring all kinds of balloons to welcome their friends and family home. They have messages like, “We Love You,” or Welcome Home,” and pictures such as hearts and funny animal shapes. But many balloons escape unsuspecting hands and fly up out of reach to the high ceiling.

Israel’s bestselling newspaper Yediot Ahronot went to the airport to investigate what happens to all these cheerful balloons and found that as soon as 10 collect on the ceiling, they are gathered up and brought to children’s hospitals around the country. The Airport Authority has been doing this since 2004, at least once or twice a week, bringing joy to countless children during their hospital stays.

The newspaper made a short video showing how the balloons are brought down using another helium balloon with double-sided adhesive tape sent up to reel them in. The film went viral and has already been viewed over one million times.

 

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