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Vapes on a Plane: Which Airlines Are E-Cig Friendly?

Posted on 23 September 2014

Vapes on a Plane: Which Airlines Are E-Cig Friendly?

Looking to vape on your next flight? Sadly, you’re probably out of luck. The vast majority of airlines have banned vaping, although you should be able to carry your e-cigarette.

On some flights, you can buy e-cigarettes from the in-flight shop, albeit at inflated prices. But that still doesn’t mean you can use them until you’re through passport control.

E-Cig Etiquette

British e-cigarette users may remember the coach journey that was curtailed by a “bomb”, which was eventually determined to be an e-cigarette emitting vapour. The Megabus incident on the M6 ended with the bomb disposal team, troops, firefighters and the police being called in while the motorway was closed. This demonstrates just how much disruption vaping can cause if observed if people don’t realise what’s going on.

Generally, when people see smoke, they tend to be alarmed. That’s especially true on aeroplanes, where smoke is generally thought to be A Very Bad Thing. To the uninitiated, the vapour from e-cigarettes looks a bit like smoke, particularly from a distance where you wouldn’t expect to smell it. That is why airlines are wary of letting people vape in-flight.


You can vape in some, but not all, airports. Ask the customer services desk for advice. When we last checked, vaping was allowed at Prestwick, East Midlands and Manchester airports.  If you do vape have consideration for those around you, especially families with children or others that may not appreciate your vapour emissions.

Generally, if you can vape in an airport, you’ll be asked to go to the smoking room.


We do not condone vaping in places where it’s prohibited, including airports and aeroplanes. You may cause genuine alarm or get landed with a fine. Blowing vape-rings over the other passengers is a sure-fire way to panic them, regardless of how the crew feels about it.

Remember, too, that vaping in the toilets on a plane could set off the smoke alarms, and the crew are not likely to be impressed by that either.  The sensors in plane toilets are extremely sensitive and may use optical sensors as well.

Airplane toilets excluded if you wish to be discreet in the airport  you can hold vapour in your lungs for a few seconds, you will have less to exhale, and you can therefore vape quite discreetly. Many of us have used this tactic to have a sneaky vape indoors, in a quiet spot, where it did not harm anyone else (and/or nobody else minded).

Passport Control

E-liquid is another consideration when flying. You’re not allowed to take liquids through passport control in the EU, unless they’re in a plastic bag, so any bottles of juice will need to (a) very small, or (b) stowed in your suitcase in the hold. If you carry a large bottle in hand luggage, you will be asked to dispose of it.

An e-cigarette could raise eyebrows if the security personnel don’t know what it is. The more bulky your hardware, the more likely it is that you’re going to attract attention at the x-ray scanner.  It is easier to have the ecig in hand luggage and place it in a visible location on the scanner trays.


We strongly advise keeping your filled clearomiser tanks in a separate plastic bag, changes in air pressure can lead to them leaking during a flight.

Getting caught is serious and might get you a ban from flying. Our advice is simple: don’t vape on a plane, save your vaping for your destination when you can relax and enjoy it.


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