It’s easy to assume another country’s stance on vaping doesn’t have any effect on people in other countries. Yet this is far from true when you consider the tourism industry. Every year, millions of people travel abroad on holiday. With vaping becoming the most popular nicotine replacement therapy to help people quit smoking, it seems likely some will run into issues when travelling abroad. If they visit countries that have banned electronic cigarettes, it could mean some are at risk of falling foul of the law.
Are you travelling to Hong Kong soon?
If so, you might want to be careful about vaping. The Hong Kong Legislative Council is thinking about passing a new law that would prohibit people from manufacturing, selling, and using all kinds of electronic cigarettes and vaping supplies. The proposed punishment for being caught doing any of those things would likely be 50,000 Hong Kong dollars and a prison sentence of up to six months.
Many have spoken out against the proposed measures, pointing out that vaping products have been proven to help people quit smoking. Sarah Jakes, a trustee of the New Nicotine Alliance, said such a move would be ‘crazy’.
Thousands of UK travellers could potentially be affected
Over half a million people travelled to Hong Kong from the UK last year alone, making it a popular holiday destination for Brits. The NNA said that with 6% of Britons using vaping products on a regular basis, that could mean around 34,000 people could fall foul of the new laws if they come into force.
Smoking is not banned in Hong Kong, which is ironically where many vaping products are created. The jury is out on whether vaping is 100% safe, but it has been proven time and again to be far safer than smoking. The nicotine is still there, but many other toxic and harmful substances included in cigarettes are not.
What should you be aware of when travelling abroad?
If you vape and you plan to go on holiday to another country, check in advance to see what the legal status is on vaping. Are there restrictions? Is it banned? Are there potential punishments if you were caught vaping? This could soon be the scenario UK vapers are faced with in Hong Kong.
What are your thoughts on this potential change to the laws in Hong Kong? Let us know below.