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Sky lanterns have been used in celebrations in Asian countries for centuries, usually to help bring prosperity by writing wishes and releasing them into the sky.

People release sky lanterns to celebrate the traditional Chinese Sky Lantern Festival in Pingsi, Taipei County

In recent times, sky lanterns have become a common sight at celebrations such as weddings and New Year’s Eve, providing an exciting way of finishing reception nights and allowing guests to send wishes and messages of goodwill to the bride and groom skywards.

Fireworks are usually let off as part of specific ceremonies, including bonfire night and New Year’s Eve. But while they can be pretty to look at, did you know that …

  • Approximately 1,000 people each year require treatment for firework injuries at hospital in the UK
  • Sparklers get five times hotter than cooking oil.
  • Three sparklers burning together generate the same heat as a blowtorch.
  • A rocket can reach speeds of 150mph.
  • Around half of all firework injuries are to children under the age of 17.

On the other hand, sky lanterns are safer, silent, pretty, inexpensive and can be incorporated into almost any celebration. So if you are looking for a fun and eye-catching way of adding to your festivities– whether a wedding reception or a birthday party – then why not consider launching some majestic sky lanterns as an alternative to fireworks?

Here are a few reasons to consider opting for lanterns over fireworks:

  • The lanterns are made from biodegradable materials, with a bamboo frame and paper, making them environmentally friendly
  • Sky lanterns are cheaper to buy than boxes of fireworks, usually available in packs of 5, but buying in bulk for an occasion can be cost-effective and will ensure that all your guests will get one
  • The lanterns can be decorated using marker pen, allowing you and your guests to write messages, wishes and draw pictures onto the lantern before releasing them
  • Children can participate in the process of creating designs on lanterns and launching them (adult supervision still required)
  • Lanterns can be launched in large quantities simultaneously, providing your guests with a lovely display as they float off into the night sky
  • Unlike fireworks, sky lanterns are also silent, reducing the risk of noise pollution and are therefore easier on the ears of small children and pets
  • Themed lanterns are available for occasions such as Birthdays, Christmas and even Halloween
  • Sky lanterns are suitable for use all year round as they are not tied to a specific holiday such as Bonfire Night, making them ideal for any occasion

But with some recent bad press about the safety of lanterns, some people  have been questioning if they are indeed safe for use. So should you be worried about potentially causing a scene by letting off some sky lanterns?

No, you do not need to be concerned provided you follow common sense.  For example, only use good quality lanterns because these retain the heat in the lantern better and so will fly higher and for longer for added safety.

Secondly, only launch lanterns from a safe location, preferably with lots of open space and away from built-up areas, to avoid the lanterns getting caught in obstacles.

Finally, if you live close to an airfield or close to the coast and are looking to release a lot of lanterns, then it’s recommended to let the relevant authorities (such as the Civil Aviation Authority or the local Coastguard) know that you plan to release some sky lanterns.


So, sky lanterns are certainly worth considering as an alternative to fireworks for your special occasion. Whether you’re looking to release one or a few dozen, your guests will certainly be in awe of the stunning sight of lanterns floating away with their wishes and aspirations.

Have fun.  Be safe.

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Tags: fireworksnight sky lanternssky lanterns
This entry was posted on Monday, October 14th, 2013 at 9:00 AM and is filed under General News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


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