AD | We might like to think that vaping is totally the norm now and even all the rage and somewhat cool, but it’s not like that everywhere, and even daring to take out your vape gear in some places could land you in a world of trouble. And now that summer is here and many of us are about to depart on wild and wonderful holidays to all parts of the globe, those planning to take their vapes along with them need to be cautious where they’ll be traveling.
It might seem absurd that you could be heavily fined and even jailed for up to 10 years for the “crime” of being in possession of an e-cigarette and e-liquid — but that’s exactly what could happen to you in tourist favorite Thailand, and not many people are aware of it.
There are many millions of vapers in places like the US and UK — a great deal of them former smokers who managed to kick the habit with vapes — and it’s a sure bet at least some of them holiday in Thailand every now and then, putting their pockets, and liberty, at risk.
If you did happen to be picked up by the police for daring to vape while in Thailand, it would be pointless trying to argue that a growing amount of research says that vaping is almost completely harmless compared to deadly smoking — which kills at least 8 million people around the world each year — or that health authorities in some countries, like the UK, are urging smokers to switch to e-cigarettes as it has become one of the best ways to quit smoking and get healthier.
Like it or not, the Thai vaping ban and its associated penalties is Thailand’s business — it’s the law, and ignorance of it is certainly no defense.
East vs West in Vaping Clash
Right around Southeast Asia, in fact, vaping and the law repeatedly clash, and you dare not even try to use your vapes, even if you’ve got the best e cig on the planet. Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong and more all prohibit the use of vape gear because they deem it harmful for their people’s health, and you may wonder why when authorities in the West say the opposite, based on in-depth and lengthy research they have carried out, while these countries have done none of their own.
Most of it is due to the stance the World Health Organization takes on the use of e-cigarettes, and for which it has been roundly criticized. The Geneva-based body has so far not backed e-cigarettes or recommended that smokers start using them, and critics say it’s an absurd position as vaping can help to dramatically roll back the number of people who smoke and, ultimately, save lives.
What about supposedly liberal Australia? Is the enormous country Down Under that millions visit every year more open about vaping? You’re out of luck because vaping is also banned in Oz — a move that has been branded “morally reprehensible” (albeit from a tobacco giant that wants to sell its vaping products in the huge Australian market).
Vapes on a Plane
Even getting to your holiday destination with your vapes, or entire vape kits that you get from your online vape shop, could get you in a spot of bother if you don’t travel the right way. Thinking about packing up your vape gear in your check-in luggage destined for the plane’s hold?
Think again. Most airlines will not allow this because if anything happens to the gear, such as the battery overheating, while in flight, it could cause difficulties. Instead, you’ll have to bring your e-cigarettes and any associated paraphernalia on board with you, in your carry-on bag or pockets.
That doesn’t mean you can “vape on”, either, as vaping is banned on board aircraft, and attempting to could see you arrested and prosecuted. So the messages when flying with your vapes are to be careful with your gear and keep it near you at all times, and never vape in places you wouldn’t smoke. You may well be able to vape at airports, however, either outside or in designated areas, such as smoking lounges.
This summer when traveling with your vapes, take extra care and precautions — and do some research into your destination’s laws on vaping before you depart. That way, you can be sure your holiday won’t go up in smoke.
* This is a pre-written sponsored post