Is This Balloon 'Travel Hack' Brilliant or the Worst Idea Ever?

girl blowing up a balloon
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Ideally, parents could travel from point A to point B on airplanes with their children and NOT have to pack every toy and snack known to mankind. Seeing as that is more of a fantasy than real life -- and kids will be kids -- moms and dads need to come correct on flights, which is why many of us look to fellow parents for hacks to help keep the kids quiet entertained. But people can't decide if this parent's unusual family travel hack would prove to be more annoying than effective. 

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Reddit user orchid_breeder urges parents to keep a few balloons handy (yes, balloons, like the things that pop and sometimes give you anxiety) while traveling with kiddos. As the parent notes, deflated balloons "take up no space, and are great for airports, especially on the way home when the kids are sick of all the toys they brought."

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"Many times I have been saved traveling with balloons," the parent shares, going on to say:

"We've played with them in a hotel room when the kid[s] need to get energy out. And when I had a plane that was delayed at [Chicago] O'Hare I was able to whip out a balloon that was in my carry on [and] blow it up. We found a gate that was empty and play volleyball over the seats for 90 minutes before the plane boarded. There's almost infinite games you can invent with a balloon, and they work as well for 15 year olds as they do for 2 year olds. All hail the great balloon.

PS. it's fun for me too."

Hmm.

As much as an impromptu game of balloon volleyball between flights sounds more fun than being stuck on a taxiing airplane with kids whining for something to do, Reddit users are torn on the concept of kids playing with balloons near airplanes (let alone on one), for obvious reasons.

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ApatheticAnarchy/Reddit; Dourpuss/Reddit

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humanysta

Others pointed out how balloons could stir up a bout of sibling rivalry ...

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Fitz_Tragic/Reddit

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whenifeellikeit/Reddit

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... and reminded the parent of a pesky thing called choking hazards, which are a sad but very real reality for little ones.

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SheStillMay/Reddit

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mombossthrowaway/Reddit

 Balloons also pose potential dangers for people who are allergic to latex.

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ajwebb23/Reddit

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And someone even warned that the TSA could think this parent is a drug smuggler -- wait, what?!

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OilFan94/Reddit

No matter how many thumbs down this parent received for using balloons as a plaything, some Reddit users still loved the idea.

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YoureSoStupidRose/Reddit

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Some even provided alternatives -- in the event you have a balloon phobia or simply don't want to deal with them -- like packing an inflatable beach ball ...

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ally-saurus/Reddit

... or creating a "doctor balloon" for kids mesmerized by the simplest of things.

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thedrew/Reddit

(Just be careful of nearby travelers with an allergy!)

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Whether you happily decide to pack a few balloons in your purse on your family adventure, or come to the conclusion that they're annoying and aren't worth the hassle (or cleanup), at least you have another parenting hack in your pocket for those "in case of emergency" days we all experience from time to time.

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