It’s World Tourism Day! With the travel industry finally starting to reopen, you might be thinking about booking your next holiday. But many countries have their own stance on vaping, so you’ll want to check where it is and isn’t legal before booking some long-awaited winter sun.
Many countries around the world are now starting to recognise the benefits of vaping over smoking as more positive data emerges. On the other hand, some are unfortunately going in the opposite direction, by introducing strict legislations and bans on a range of products, including flavoured e-liquids.
The main reason countries ban e-cigarettes is because they base their policies on the opinions of the World Health Organisation (WHO), who are sadly anti-vaping despite the overwhelming scientific evidence suggesting otherwise. Due to their influence, many governing bodies follow their advice to the letter, which results in outright bans and a return to cigarettes for former smokers.
With that in mind, if you want to be able to vape on holiday, you need to check the laws of the country you're planning to enter. This includes whether you can or can’t vape, if you can buy vape juice whilst you’re there and therefore how much you can take in your luggage. So let's dive in and find out where you can and can’t vape abroad.
Where is vaping legal?
In the UK, we’re used to vaping laws being fairly liberal, especially compared to many other countries that have strict rules on the sales and use of e-cigarettes and nicotine products. Some places allow you to vape, but you aren’t allowed to buy e-liquids or devices, whilst others enforce rules against vaping in certain public spaces, such as pubs, bars and tourist attractions. If you aren’t sure, just ask!
Here’s a list of all the countries that currently allow vaping, but remember that the rules change quickly, so you should always check before you travel.
- Czech Republic
- Indonesia – Imports subject to taxation.
- Ivory Coast
- Jamaica – But importation requires a government permit.
- South Korea
- New Zealand
- San Marino
- Saudi Arabia
- Switzerland – A ban was overturned in 2018 after a court appeal.
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
- United States - The FDA, the governing body that regulates the vaping industry, recently announced stricter rules on the sale and importation of vape products. The rules also vary from state to state, with many banning the sale of flavoured e-liquids. San Francisco, for example, has a complete ban on e-cigarettes, so you need to check the rules of your chosen destination.
- Vietnam – There are rumours of a ban though, so be wary.
Where is vaping illegal?
There’s more than 40 countries across the world that ban vaping, including the use, sale and importation of e-cigarettes and e-liquid. In some places, the rules aren’t strictly enforced, but in others the consequences are severe.
Most of the countries in the list below are fine with vapes being used in the country, so we’ve outlined where it’s just illegal to import and buy products and where you won’t be able to take your e-cig.
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Australia – While Australia doesn't say they ban vaping outright, it is essentially a ban by proxy. The sale or importation of nicotine containing e-liquid is illegal, and various states have their own rules about vaping nicotine products, but you can check the rules from state to state here
- Brunei Darussalam
- Cambodia – Complete ban.
- Costa Rica
- Gambia – Complete ban.
- India – Complete ban.
- Japan – No nicotine containing e-liquid allowed.
- N. Korea – Complete ban.
- Lao PDR
- Lebanon – Complete ban.
- Nicaragua – Complete ban.
- Qatar – Complete ban.
- Singapore – Complete ban. You risk a fine of up to $1500 just for possession!
- Sri Lanka
- Thailand – They have some of the harshest punishments for vaping in the world. Your vape products may be confiscated, but most importantly, you could be fined or sent to prison for up to ten years if you’re caught with one and convicted. For sale or importation, you could face a 5 year prison sentence or a large fine.
- Vatican City – Complete ban.
How much vape liquid can you take on a plane?
This depends on where you are flying to, so you need to check the customs regulations for wherever you’re flying in to. Some may require you to store e-liquid bottles in the hold, others will let you take them in your carry on, but a few won’t let you take anything in, so do some research before you pack.
Like all liquids, there are limits to the amount of e-liquid you can put in your hand luggage on a plane. You will be asked to seal your e-liquids in clear plastic bags, with a size limit of 100ml per bottle, so it might be a good idea to stick to 10mls or 50ml shortfills at most!
Can you use a vape on a plane? No. Airlines require you to take your electronic cigarettes with you on the plane, but they will not permit you to vape on the plane.
As battery-operated devices cannot be stored in the cargo hold, all e-cigarettes will need to be carried either on your person or in hand luggage.
We recommend that you empty your device’s tank before you fly, as the change in air-pressure can cause vape tanks to leak - you shouldn’t need to worry about this if you’re using prefilled kits though.
Are you allowed to vape in airports?
You are not allowed to vape inside airports, but each has their own rules about vaping outside before check-in. Most have designated smoking areas where you can vape, but some, like Exeter Airport, don’t allow vaping anyway on the premises, so make sure you check with whichever airports you're flying to and from.
So, that’s everything you need to know about vaping abroad. Grab your sunglasses, it’s time to pack those bags! Remember, the rules around vaping can change quickly, so keep an eye on your chosen destination’s policies just in case. You can usually find all the information you need on their government website.
Pop into one of our stores or check out our online store to top up your vape stash before you jet off. We’ve got a huge range of delicious e-liquids and portable vape kits to choose from, and all orders over £25 qualify for free next day delivery!