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Vaping Trends & Restrictions around the World

The vaping phenomenon is a growing trend around the world with an increasing amount of smokers making the switch between smoking & vaping. As with anything that grows in popularity, restrictions tend to tighten up and this is definitely the case with vaping with countries enforcing or adjusting restrictions with regards to the use of electronic cigarettes. This study will delve further into the rules involved with vaping with respect to the countries where is it most popular.



The USA houses the highest amount of vapers of any country worldwide, (when correlating with its large population). In recent times, the FDA (Food & Drugs Administration) has enforced various legislations with vaping products that have affected the way these products are produced & sold. The most formidable possible regulation which has arose due to unconfirmed rumours amongst vaping community is an upcoming ban on any flavoured e-liquids as a way to combat any potential appeal to underage users becoming addicted to nicotine[1]. It should however be remembered that this is currently only a future possibility as numerous previous rumours regarding vaping laws in the USA have never come to fruition.

Vaping legislations/restrictions differ in the USA dependant on which state you are in so if you are planning on travelling to the USA it is vital you do your research to ensure you don’t end up in hot water by vaping where it is prohibited. States such as Nevada, Tennessee & Nebraska are a haven for vapers with no restrictions on the use of electronic cigarettes but on the flipside, states like Massachusetts, California & Mississippi have certain legislations with respect to the use & sale of vaping products. Any sale of e-cigarettes or related products is prohibited to persons under the age of 18.


The UK has embraced vaping at a great exponential rate with an estimated 20% of past smokers having made the switch to vaping, amounting to a number anywhere between 3.5 million to 4.5 million. The TPD(Tobacco Products Direction) enforced a set of regulations back in May 2017 that restricted the sale & use of popular products, these are most notably:

  • Restriction of e-cigarette tanks to a maximum 2ml capacity
  • Cap the maximum volume of nicotine-containing e-liquid for sale to 10ml
  • Restrict e-liquids nicotine strength to 20mg/ml
  • Require nicotine-containing products and/or their packaging to be child-resistant/tamper evident
  • Banning of specific ingredients & colourings
  • Mandatory requirements for products to include new labelling requirements/warnings
  • Require qualifying  e-cigarettes/e-liquids to be notified to MHRA before they can be sold

Many manufacturers were forced to alter e-liquid recipes to ensure their products adhere to the TPD regulations, it is also now common to find zero nicotine e-liquids with space to add pure nicotine in order for this to be mixed to create a nicotine containing e-liquid that is above 10ml, these are commonly referred to as ‘shortfills’. Perhaps a detrimentally direct result of the tank capacity restriction meant that most popular pre-TPD tanks were now not compliant and thus Chinese based e-cigarette manufacturers had to revamp their catalogue of vape tanks.


Singapore is a country that has one of the highest restrictions within the e-cigarette arena, use & sale of any vaping or ‘smoking mimicking products’ is highly prohibited. Some of our regular customers at our Fogfathers West London Branch have told us of visiting Singapore & not only having their e-cigarette(s) confiscated but also being issued with a passport related warning that will result in harsher penalties for any further breaches of Singapore’s e-cigarette restrictions. So in essence, if you plan on visiting Singapore any time soon, make sure you do not plan on vaping!


Sweden, like the UK & USA has a large & increasing number of vapers throughout resulting in the number of smokers in this part of the world declining steadily. At this point in time, Sweden has one of the most relaxed laws when attributed to electronic cigarette regulations when compared to the rest of the world, currently there are no restrictions other than any buyer having to be a minimum age of 18 to purchase any vape related product.


Thailand has enforced a countrywide ban on the use and sale of e-cigarette products, these bans when enforced could lead to hefty fines. There have been cases of tourists who are unaware of Thailands vaping legislations and landed a hefty fine as a result of being caught so if you plan on travelling to Thailand it is heavily advised to not carry any sort of electronic cigarette related products with you on your travels. The exact reason for their strict ban, and perhaps for similarly firm prohibition in other countries is unknown however there is a strong chance that any boom in smokers switching to e-cigarettes will result in a detrimental effect on duty revenue from sales of cigarettes and thus bans are introduced.


Japan has a restriction in place that effects the vaping of e-liquid that contains nicotine. The IQOS ‘heat not burn’ products have done particularly well in this part of world partly due to restricted nature of nicotine containing e-liquids. In Japan, any e-liquid which contains nicotine comes under the umbrella of a pharmaceutical ingredient which therefore becomes governed & strictly controlled, as nicotine e-liquids falls within these brackets they are outlawed for use & sale in Japan.
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