With so much controversy and conflicting information regarding electronic cigarettes, you can be forgiven for wondering.

Rest assured, however, that the use of electronic cigarettes is totally legal in the UK. Although debate continues regarding future legislation, there are currently no legal restrictions on the usage of either e-cigs or e-liquids.

Are Electronic Cigarettes Legal in Public?


Smoking is banned in public places but vaping is not smoking and does not fall under this regulation. Even ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) recommended that electronic cigarettes should not be subject to the UK smokefree legislation.

In theory, and according to the law, you can vape anywhere at any time since electronic cigarettes don’t produce any smoke.

Realistically, you may run into some problems as vaping is still a new and relatively misunderstood practice. Because the vapour so closely resembles smoke, people naturally assume it poses the same danger to bystanders in the form of passive vaping, which we know to be practically nil.

So, as a matter of courtesy, and to avoid embarrassment, we would suggest checking with owners of pubs, restaurants or other public spaces before vaping. Some may allow it, others might not. Some airlines don’t allow the use of electronic cigarettes for example, and you will hear them mentioned in smoke-restriction PA announcements such as football stadiums.

It’s important to remember that despite vaping being legal, it might not always be prudent in all situations.

Regulations Concerning Electronic Cigarettes


Like anything else that is bought or sold in the UK, electronic cigarettes and their various components fall under existing regulations regarding plugs and sockets, weights and measures and labelling. Traders are subject to the same regulations and must abide by the same rules as traders or vendors in any other industry.

E-Liquid usage is legal in the UK, too, and undergoes regular, stringent testing by Trading Standards to confirm its lack of toxicity by contamination.

In short, it means you can confidently buy electronic cigarettes knowing that you’re not breaking any UK laws, and further, that you’re covered under existing legislation regarding all sales of goods and equipment.


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