Travel Features

What Countries Can And Can’t I Vape In?

We’ve previously discussed in what situations you can use your e-cig when travelling but a much broader issue is what countries can and can’t you vape in? For those of you who have seen people vaping but aren’t exactly sure what they are, e-cigarettes are a smoke and tobacco-free product which is used to offset the many health issues with tobacco products. As such, e-cigarettes aren’t classed as a tobacco product, a pharmaceutical product or marketed for use as a quitting aid – they are strictly a consumer purchase and an alternative to harmful tobacco products.

Whereas it’s an undeniable fact that vaping is less harmful alternative to traditional tobacco cigarettes, with the UK’s Public Health body stating they’re 95 per cent less harmful, opinions on the practice of e-cigs and vaping remain very cautious. Nowhere is this evidenced more than by the variety of differing regulations and opinions worldwide on the practice of vaping. For every country with a relaxed or open policy on e-cigs there is an equal country which views it as something akin to witchcraft.

With travel writers based across the globe, we’ve consolidated a definitive list of vaping policies from some of the most popular travel destinations to let you know whether you’re safe to vape when you’re in-country or not.

Argentina

Argentina banned the importing, distribution, commercialisation and advertising of e-cigs and other vaping products back in 2011 stating that “there is not enough scientific evidence to determine that these (the e-cigarettes) are safe for human consumption.”

Status: Banned

Australia

Australia has taken a cautious approach to e-cigs, giving the practice partial permission. This means that the sale of refills or e-liquids containing nicotine isn’t allowed under the Poisons Legislation but there is no law that restricts the sale of e-cigarettes or e-liquids which contain no nicotine.

Status: Restricted Use

China

Whereas specific news is hard to come by, the sale and use of e-cigs is legal but there are reports which say the use varies from region to region.

Status: Legal

Costa Rica

As a travel destination which is growing in popularity, you’ll be happy to know that e-cigarettes are regulated as a tobacco product by the country. This means that the import, sale and use of them is permitted. No advertising is allowed and the use is restricted in public places.

Status: Legal

Czech Republic

As one of the go-to European destinations due to its amazing architecture and wonderful nightlife, you’ll be happy to know that the import, sale and use of e-cigs remain unrestricted in the Czech Republic.

Status: Legal

Indonesia

Indonesia blanket-banned e-cigarettes just last year after concerns were raised around them being hazardous to health… this despite the country having a large tobacco smoking population. The Presidential Decree not only banned their use but the import too.

Status: Banned

Israel

Though e-cigarettes were initially banned by the Israeli Ministry of Health, the Supreme Court in the country overruled the ban by a three-nil decision allowing the import and sale of vaping products.

Status: Legal

Japan

Like Australia, Japan have provided partial permission for the use of e-cigs in their country. E-cigarettes and e-liquids which contain no nicotine are allowed to be used but ones with nicotine are banned due to being an ‘unlicensed medical product’.

Status: Restricted Use

Mexico

Mexico have taken a different approach to banning e-cigarettes, putting a downer on many resort holidaymakers vaping vacation. As such the sale, production, distribution or advertising of e-cigs and e-cig products are banned as the design is too similar to their tobacco alternative.  With this in mind, we’re unsure if the ban only encompasses disposable e-cigs which resemble tobacco cigarettes or actual vaporisers as well.

Status: Banned

Netherlands

As one of the most laidback countries in Europe, with its range of relaxed rules meaning it remains a big draw for travellers, it’s no surprise that vaping is permitted in the Netherlands. Be that as it may, the government did attempt to blanket ban their use but this was overturned in 2012 by the courts allowing the import and sale of e-cigs and e-liquids.

Status: Legal

New Zealand

Like their Aussie neighbours, New Zealand have a partial permission approach to e-cigs and only those containing zero nicotine are permitted, with e-liquids containing nicotine being classed as a medicine.

Status: Restricted Use

Thailand

Similar to Indonesia, despite a heavy smoking population, a total ban on e-cigs and e-liquids is in place in the country meaning your backpacking holiday could be adversely affected.

Status: Banned

United Arab Emirates

Trade and sale of e-cigarettes has been blanket banned by the United Arab Emirates, meaning any ex-pats will have no choice but to ditch vaping.

Status: Banned

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is currently the only country where e-cigs are comprehensively regulated but this could be about to change.  The European Union will soon be picking over the Tobacco Products Directive in an attempt to regulate and check the productions and sale of E-cigarettes across these countries. This could have a backward-impact on the current UK regulation.

Status: Legal

United States of America

The import, sale, advertising and use of e-cigs are allowed in America with the countries Food and Drug Administration (FDA) stating a wish to regulate them as a tobacco product – this is after they attempted to ban the practice in 2010. Due to the constitution of the country, individual states can introduce their own regulations which is why Virginia allows it but Washington have banned its in-doors use.

Status: Legal

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