The legality of vaping varies throughout the world. In 2014, the World Health Organisation published guidelines for Governments making laws and regulations on tobacco control, including e-cigarettes. This led to a number of countries placing a ban or restrictions on the use of e-cigarettes.
In short, before you travel you should check the local vaping laws for your destination. Here’s why.
According to the Global State of Tobacco Harm Reduction report, 39 countries have banned the sale of e-cigarettes or e-liquids. Some of these are:
- Australia has banned the sale of e-cigarettes containing nicotine, however vaping is still permitted
- Vaping is banned in North Korea, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, Brunei and Singapore
- Bringing a vape kit or e-liquid into Thailand could lead to imprisonment as the country has some of the strictest vaping laws in the world
- Jordan, Oman and Qatar have made vaping illegal
- Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay have made it legal to use e-cigarettes, but illegal to sell them
The reality is that the laws are still evolving – as new research emerges, governments continue to review their positions to ensure regulations take into consideration the latest information on the possible health impacts of vaping.
Even in the two biggest vaping markets in the world, the law differs.
In the UK, vaping is permitted, and devices are regulated by the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations of 2016. Companies are legally required to test products and e-liquids to ensure they meet specific safety and environmental standards, and provide the findings to consumers so they can make informed choices. There are also strict rules on advertising, and to purchase an e-cigarette or e-liquid you must be 18 or older.
However, in the United States, specific regulations vary by state and even by city.
For example, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Massachusetts have all banned sales of flavoured vaping products, while on a national level, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires e-cigarettes to be regulated as tobacco products. This means that the FDA will evaluate vaping products based on ingredients, features and potential health risks, and that those products cannot be sold to those underage.
It’s always advisable – wherever you’re travelling – to check the local laws before your journey in order to avoid any problems when you get there.