vaping in thailandLiving Traveling 

Vaping in Thailand

With Vaping becoming more and more popular many travelers as well as residents in Thailand forget one important thing: Vaping is banned in Thailand!

Unlike some panic inducing forums might want to make you believe that’s not a new rule though, that has been the case since 2014. Now I don’t want to get into more details about whether or not that makes sense or not, you simply have to be aware of the fact that it is, in fact, not allowed here.

Back from when Thailand outlawed the import of e-cigarettes in 2014 it now has been updated to the export as well as sale of all kinds of e-smoking devices and equipment. You can still see lots of people vaping here in Thailand though as, with all laws, it’s not always enforced.

That, however, does not mean you should just ignore it. In theory you could face 10 years in jail (!) – TEN YEARS – let that sink in. Is that really worth it? There actually have been cases where people have been hold and / or arrested for vaping in public.

As this has been in the news more often now quite a few tour operators all around the world warn travelers going to Thailand t not bring any vape equipment to the country as the risk of being punished is simply to high.

If my word is not enough, simply listen to what the official website of the Thai Tourism Authority has to say:

Travelers coming to Thailand should be aware that electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes are illegal in the kingdom.

Anyone found breaking this law by using an electronic cigarette – or vaping – in Thailand could be arrested and face jail time, or a fine several times the value of the illegal item(s). This applies both to foreigners and Thais.

There have been recent incidents of foreign travellers who were unaware of the ban facing an on-the-spot fine or being arrested.

The ban was introduced in 2014 by the Thai Government for health reasons and that electronic cigarettes were luring young people into smoking.

Thus, travellers coming to Thailand are advised not to bring any electronic cigarettes with them, nor any item or equipment associated with e-cigarettes; such as, the liquid used in the device.

Likewise, travel agents or tour operators selling Thailand as a destination should make sure their clients are aware of the ban in place on electronic cigarettes.

Travellers coming to Thailand should be aware that electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes are illegal in the kingdom.

Anyone found breaking this law by using an electronic cigarette – or vaping – in Thailand could be arrested and face jail time, or a fine several times the value of the illegal item(s). This applies both to foreigners and Thais.

And if that is not enough have a look at what happened to a Swiss tourist here in Thailand in 2017 when he was caught vaping in public. Below is the statement of StattQualm, the maker of the Squape atomizer.

Dear vape community,

In the following letter we would like to inform the community about a matter of great importance. We are deeply affected and personally involved in the incident, but renounce mentioning any names out of respect for relatives and family members. Nevertheless we are forced to warn the community:

On July 26, 2017, a close friend of StattQualm was arrested in the streets of Thailand because he used an e-cigarette. To pre-empt any doubts: The police, the Swiss Embassy, and other affected agencies were informed that our friend had not been otherwise illegally involved. Apparently and state of affairs his offense was the use of an e-cigarette in the public, more specifically, he is accused of importing e-cigarettes. This is at least the official charge.

We are aware that some countries have difficulty dealing with e-cigarettes. In Thailand, the situation seems relatively unclear and arbitrary. Apparently even in Thailand itself exists a lively, official market for e-cigarettes and the image of vaping people is no longer special in Thailand – although vaping is officially illegal in Thailand. Well, quite obviously a police officer on that date decided that vaping was “extra” illegal today. He was arrested, led away, and sat six days in jail – completely cut off from the environment, without real contact and under degrading and humiliating conditions.

Of course, embassies, relatives, friends, and also we did everything possible to get him out of prison as quickly as possible, but this has been proved incredibly difficult. In the meantime the deposit could be made. Our friend was able to leave the prison yesterday and is now waiting for the effective trial. A judgment could be an immediate deportation to up to 5 years imprisonment. We now hope that our friend will be able to leave the situation undamaged, to leave Thailand as soon as possible and to go home.

In this way we want to warn the community: If anyone of you plans to visit Thailand, please leave your vape gears at home! That’s no joke. Our friend has to serve as a precedent, that no one has seen coming. No matter what you read on the net, do not take the risk. Please take care of yourself.

You are more than welcome to share this letter.
Team StattQualm

So, stay safe, don’t vape – in Thailand!

Sascha Funk

Founder / Editor at My-Thai.org
Sascha is the publisher of my-thai.org and switched from an online marketing agency life in Europe to a teaching and education life in Thailand. He also writes about Teaching & Technology.

Related posts