What Is the Legal Age to Vape Worldwide?
Vaping products have surged in popularity, leaving lawmakers and health officials grappling to determine how to oversee their consumption.
Many legislators have undertaken various measures to shield adolescents from vapour products by regulating the minimum age for purchasing them. Some countries have gone so far as to ban it entirely.
Depending on where you live or plan to travel to, it's essential to become familiar with the general restrictions in your country, so you get an idea of how these rules could affect you.
What Is the Legal Age to Vape in Canada?
The minimum age to purchase tobacco products is 18 for those in Canada. However, territories and provinces have their own provisions for regulating vape products and e-cigarettes.
Most regions have set their age restrictions to 18 or 19 years old. However, some regions, like Prince Edward Island, require you to be at least 21 to use nicotine vaping products.
If you want to vape in Canada, it’s best to look up the laws and regulations of the specific province you’re in to make sure you’re following the rules.
Do These Rules Apply to 0% Nicotine Products?
According to the Canadian government, it’s illegal to provide or sell vaping products to a person who isn’t 18 or older in Canada. Laws in some provinces have an increased age of 19 or even 21.
How Old Do You Have to Be to Vape Around the World?
Laws and regulations are ever-changing, and new studies continue to shed light on the impacts of vaping. While the laws are unlikely to become more lenient anytime soon, keeping up with the age restriction policies on vaping is a good idea.
Whether you're buying a vape pen domestically or planning to travel with e-cigarettes, knowing the laws can help you avoid potential complications, particularly in public spaces like airports.
In the United States, Congress passed a law in December 2019 making it illegal on the federal level to sell vaping and tobacco products to anyone under 21. This law amended the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and raised the federal minimum age from 18 to 21 years.
Congress raised the age limit as a response to the growing concerns about the rising rates of vaping among young adults and the long-term health consequences and nicotine addiction it could cause. While this is the federal law, states may have differing rules, so check on the laws of the specific state you’re looking at.
This concern also holds true for Canada, where 41% of students from grades 10 to 12 have ever vaped – according to a recent Canada Student Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey.
In Canada, selling or providing vaping products to anyone under 18 is illegal, but some provincial laws set this age at 19 or 21.
Provinces such as Alberta, Manitoba, Quebec and Saskatchewan currently have a legal age limit of just 18 years old. Other regions like British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario and Yukon require individuals to be at least 19 years old.
Make sure to look up the law in a specific province to find out what the age limit is there.
Across Europe, vaping regulations differ based on the country. For example, in central European countries like France, Germany, and Sweden, the legal age for vaping is 18. This age aligns with the rules for purchasing tobacco products in these nations.
However, not all European countries go by this age limit. Turkey, a country straddling Asia and Europe, has taken a particularly strict stance. They've implemented a ban on importing vape products.
Since the UK has left the EU, the laws for the UK tend to be different than Europe. However, they haven't fully transitioned from the TPD laws governing Europe.
As of now, retailers aren't allowed to sell e-cigarettes containing nicotine to anyone under 18.
The legal age to buy or use nicotine vapes is 18 years old. However, Australia's national regulars are more complex than they appear.
Currently, you must have a prescription to obtain e-cigarettes with nicotine.
Like many other countries, in China, you must be at least 18 years old to buy e-cigarettes. As a result, retailers aren’t able to sell to customers unless they’re 18 or older.
Brazil isn't a vape-friendly country. Since 2009, the sale, importation, and advertising of e-cigarettes have been banned in Brazil. If you're looking to buy conventional tobacco products, you must be at least 18 years old.
Vaping is legal in South Korea and has an age requirement of at least 19 years old.
That said, vaping has faced continuous scrutiny in the country, resulting in substantial taxes on e-liquids, particularly when imported.
Following concerns about EVALI cases in the US, the Korean government started studying the health effects and imposing restrictions on e-liquids from specific brands.
Vaping is legal in the UAE; e-cigarettes were legalized in 2019. However, make sure to be mindful of any restrictions regarding where you’re allowed to vape.
The age requirement to vape under UAE law is 18 years old.
Is Vaping Illegal in Any Country?
Many countries have banned or heavily restricted vaping for health concerns. Some countries completely ban the use and sale of vaping, while some only prohibit the act of selling but allow the use of vaping.
Make sure to check on the specific laws of any country before vaping to find out their specific laws and regulations.
Some examples of countries that have banned vaping (either using and selling or just selling) include:
Vaping regulations may change, so make sure to check on any country’s laws before travelling there to understand what the rules are.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the Legal Age to Vape Around the World Always the Same as Tobacco Products?
Most laws around the legal vaping age in a country or province align with the already established age limit restrictions for buying tobacco products like chewing tobacco or cigarettes. The most common age limits for purchasing tobacco and vape products are 18 or 19, but it’s important to check on the laws of the specific place you’re visiting.
Clearly, vaping has taken the world by storm. However, in order to protect younger people and due to health concerns, different places have different laws and regulations regarding the use and sale of these products.
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