Sky lanterns are the latest party trend and for a good reason. The safe and secure-to-use lanterns have a long history of decorating the night sky during Chinese lantern festivals, but now the lanterns have made their way to North America to bring an added touch of beauty to parties, weddings and memorials. It’s believed that messages written on the lanterns or whispered by users when releasing the lanterns make their way to heaven, which adds an emotional and sentimental touch to any event.
Sky lanterns are made from thin paper that is biodegradable, meaning your soaring sky lantern won’t leave a carbon footprint once it finally lands. The lanterns each come with an individual fuel cell that is ignited with a flame and uses the heat to open the lantern and send it flying, much like a hot air balloon. We love using sky lanterns for special occasions, either in addition to or as a replacement for firecrackers. Sky lanterns are a better alternative for people with sound sensitivities or sensory issues and they don’t require a permit or license to buy like fireworks do (check with your state’s rules as some areas don’t allow sky lanterns). We also like the added level of safety that comes with a sky lantern compared to fireworks, with the lanterns safe enough for children to use under adult supervision.
Sky lanterns can add a sweet touch to a birthday or wedding celebration and they’re also commonly used at celebration of life ceremonies to honor those we’ve lost. If you’re ready to light up the night sky, we’ve collected a list of the best sky lanterns available.
1. BATTIFE Sky Lanterns
Send your wishes into the sky with the BATTIFE Sky Lanterns. The 10-pack of lanterns arrive pre-assembled, making it easy for customers to use the lanterns as soon as they arrive. The BATTIFE can reach a soaring height of 3,000 feet to create a magical skyline. Each lantern is made from biodegradable rice paper, cotton string and a bamboo frame. BATTIFE notes that it’s a good idea to confirm sky lanterns are allowed in your area by checking with the fire marshall before releasing the lanterns.
Pros: BATTIFE makes it easy to use their product even if you’re new to sky lanterns. Each lantern comes with a clear, step-by-step set of instructions and the company offers an instructional video on their Amazon page to ensure users employ the safety steps necessary for using the lanterns.
Cons: The BATTIFE lanterns take approximately one minute to completely fill with air and become ready for flight.
2. Smeiker Chinese Lanterns
Decorate the night sky using the Smeiker Chinese Lanterns. The lanterns are 100% biodegradable and made with fire-resistant rice paper, fire-resistant string and a bamboo frame. The lanterns are powered by a cardboard wax fuel cell that is pre-attached to each lantern. Like all sky lanterns, Smeiker recommends using two people to light their lanterns, with one person holding the lantern from the top as the other person lights the wax fuel cell and waits for the lantern to fill up with air before taking flight.
Pros: As these lanterns are totally blank, they’re great for personally customizing them.
Cons: If you want pre-written messages, a different lantern would be best.
3. SKY HIGH 30 Pack Colorful Chinese Lanterns
If you want a sky lantern that looks beautiful in the daylight and can be seen from a distance, we recommend the SKY HIGH 30 Pack Colorful Chinese Lanterns. The colorful pack of lanterns comes in bold hues, which adds versatility and gives users the option to release the lanterns at night or during daylight hours. The lanterns measure approximately 35” high and are made 100% biodegradable and with fire-retardant paper. The lanterns can fly for nearly nine minutes and reach a maximum height of 3,000 feet.
Pros: Each lantern comes fully assembled and individually packed, making them a great item to give out as gifts.
Cons: The SKY HIGH lanterns are sold in a pack of assorted colors and can’t be purchased in sets of one specific color.