Vaping Laws around the World
As we all know, the world of vaping is ever changing. Like with many other laws on many other topics, there is very little consensus on the topic of vaping and whether or not it should be allowed. This can make things more than a little difficult for travelling vapers – where in one country you can vape freely, you might be given a substantial fine in the next. Here’s the most important rules and regulations you need to know from around the globe.
EU wide regulation introduced in 2014 outlaws advertising for e-cigarettes, sets a limit on the amount of nicotine in e-liquids, and requires sellers to package products in child and tamper-proof packaging amongst a whole load of other complicated rules and regulations. Despite the arrival of these rules, there are still discrepancies from country to country. In France, for instance, e-liquids are considered medical products – something that is not generally in place in other member states – and, in the United Kingdom, advertising of e-cigarette paraphernalia has been allowed since 2014.
I’m sure we’re all familiar with the ever-changing regulations in the United States, but what about Canada? If you’re planning a trip across the border, there’s good news – vaping is largely unregulated in Canada. While the technicalities of Canadian law mean that selling e-cigarettes is illegal, the reality of the situation is that this is rarely enforced properly. When it comes to actually vaping, several cities have enforced different rules – in Toronto, for example, it’s against the rules to vape in the workplace and Vancouver has extended their smoking ban in public places to vaping.
Central and South America
After a ban on tobacco products was overturned in 2015, e-cigarettes are now legal again in Mexico. However, in places like Uruguay and Argentina vaping is completely banned. In addition, Brazilian law completely forbids ‘the sale, importation, and advertising’ of any electronic cigarettes. This is because Brazil’s health and sanitation federal agency, known as Anvisa, found the current health and safety assessments about e-cigarettes unsatisfactory to allow them in the country.
Australia and New Zealand
As vaping remains a relatively new phenomenon, Australia is still in the midst of developing their vaping regulations. Often the rules from state to state vary (and, in some cases, they actually conflict – which is nice and confusing for travellers!). But, on the whole, there is no regulation completely outlawing e-cigarettes.
In New Zealand, things are a little more straightforward. As long as your e-cigarettes don’t contain nicotine, sale is permitted to people over the age of 18. If you want e-juices containing nicotine, they must be imported from overseas and can only be used for personal use. Advertising of e-cigarettes is not allowed, however, which can cause trouble for manufacturers.
Japan took the decision to ban e-cigarettes containing nicotine in 2010, but there’s currently no regulation for e-cigarettes and vaping devices that don’t contain nicotine – so both adults and minors can vape those to their heart’s content. Similarly, in the Philippines, e-cigarettes remain completely unregulated, which means anyone of any age can buy them. However, the Philippine Medical Association is recommending that the ban on cigarettes in public places be extended to vaping.
In the modern-day home of vaping, China, the import and export, sale, and use of e-cigarettes is completely legal – but new rules are being imposed in certain places. In Shanghai, for example, the use of e-cigarettes is banned in no smoking areas.
The Middle East
Many countries in the Middle East take an even harder line against vaping. The UAE, Qatar, and Jordan have all completely banned vaping devices. Brunei goes one step further in their vaping rules, slapping anyone found vaping in a non-smoking zone with a $500 fine, and selling or importing e-cigarettes could cost you $10,000. If you’re planning to visit any time soon, we’d recommend you follow the rules!
It’s important to remember that vaping regulations are always changing. Public opinion on vaping is always evolving, as are the thoughts of people in power. If you’re an avid vaper planning to travel over the next few weeks, we’d definitely recommend that you check up on the regulations in your destination – after all, it’s better to give up your e-cigs for a little while then end up with a hefty fine (or jail time!).