Vaping has taken the world by storm and, while some nations such as the U.K. are quite vape friendly, travelling with one can still be a challenge. Whether you plan to travel by road, sea, air, or rail, it is important to understand the rules and regulations for transporting your vape before you set off for your destination. Failure to do so could result in having your device confiscated or, worse, you could end up facing legal penalties. While the exact laws and regulations for vaping and transporting vaping equipment vary from place to place, we’ve put together this general guide to help make your travels a bit easier.
Research the Local Laws
Many places have laws regarding where you are allowed to vape, but there are others that ban the practice entirely. If you plan on travelling to Thailand or the United Arab Emirates, for example, you should plan to leave your device and e-liquids at home, as they are banned. Even in nations that do allow them, such as the United States, some states and cities ban their use. In California, vaping in public places (even outdoors) is illegal. The same goes for New York City. Many parks, sports stadiums, and other popular destinations also ban them.
Before you start worrying about how to transport your vaping equipment, take the time to learn whether you will be allowed to even use it at your destination. If vaping is illegal where you are travelling to, there’s no point in dealing with the hassle of bringing your e-cigarette with you.
Understand Battery Safety
When it comes to travelling with electronic cigarettes, battery safety is one of the primary concerns. Vapes require a battery to function and, like any most other battery-operated devices, they usually cannot be carried in your checked luggage when flying. Battery explosions and fires are rare, but they are a very real concern and have made travelling with vapes via air challenging.
If you are flying, check with your airline to determine its rules regarding vapes. You should be allowed to carry your battery in your carry-on luggage, but you may need to remove the batteries from your mod. When in doubt, talk to someone at the airport to determine your airline’s exact requirements.
Back in 2006, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and several aviation regulators around the world banned all liquids, gas containers, and aerosols over 100ml from commercial flights. Back then, vaping and vape liquid simply did not exist.
If you are travelling with vape liquid, you should be fine—as long as the bottles are 100ml or smaller. The bottles should be stored along with all of your other liquids in a clear plastic bag. If you plan on travelling for an extended period of time and would like to bring along more than 100ml of your favourite e-liquid, divide it into separate containers or store it in your checked luggage. Buying your vape liquid when you reach your destination is possible, but you may struggle to find it in many areas. When buying it overseas, you often cannot be assured of the manufacturing standards.
Variety is one of the great things about vaping. Devices come in all different types and styles to cater to all different people. If you are a builder, though, you may want to consider leaving most of your supplies and equipment at home.
Think about it. Imagine being a security officer at an airport, train station, etc. and being presented with a bag containing pliers, tweezers, cotton, and spools of wire. Now, imagine that you’ve never heard of vaping or experienced it for yourself. Chances are, those items would look pretty suspicious to you, right? In fact, they could easily be mistaken for bomb-making equipment. Add a language barrier and the inability to explain exactly what your supplies are used for to the mix, and you could be in some serious trouble.
When travelling with your vape, bring only the bare essentials. You are much less likely to run into trouble if you leave your building equipment at home and only pack a simple e-cigarette or vape pen setup for your trip.
Be Mindful of Your Surroundings
In many ways, airports, bus stations, and train depots are cities unto themselves. They often have their own sets of rules that travellers are expected to abide by. Even if you are travelling in a country where vaping is allowed, it is important to pay attention to your surroundings to determine the rules. Many airports and other transit facilities include vaping in their smoking policies. This means that you may only be allowed to vape in the facility’s smoking lounge. While you may not face serious consequences for vaping in areas where doing so is not allowed, you can save yourself a lot of frustration and embarrassment by paying attention to—and abiding by—the rules.
Use Common Sense
In many parts of the world, vaping is seen as being equivalent to smoking. When in doubt about whether you should use your device, treat it as you would a cigarette. You would be in serious trouble if you lit up a cigarette on a plane, and puffing on your vape isn’t going to go over much better. When visiting pubs, restaurants, cafes, and other establishments, ask the proprietor before pulling out your device. A bit of common sense and courtesy goes a long way and can help you avoid fines, having your device confiscated, or even being arrested while travelling.
While vaping is growing in popularity and becoming increasingly common in many nations around the world, precautions must still be taken when travelling with your device. Research local laws and check with your airline to determine its regulations for travelling with vapes and e-liquids. With a little planning and a bit of common sense, you can enjoy your holiday and, likely, spend some time vaping in brand new places.