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What Are The New Vaping Laws in Australia?

If you’ve been following the news lately, you might have heard about all the changes coming to vaping laws in Australia. The government has been cracking down on vaping and this week, announced a ban on sales outside of pharmacies.

Here’s a breakdown of this update and what you need to know to stay on the right side of the law.

Is vaping banned in Australia?

Selling vapes

Starting July 1, it will be illegal for any retailer other than pharmacies to sell vapes. This means you won’t be able to buy them at convenience stores, petrol stations, or any other shops. Possessing up to nine vapes for personal use is legal, but selling them outside of pharmacies can result in significant fines and jail time.

Buying vapes

Buying nicotine vapes will also become more restricted. From 1 July, you’ll need a prescription from a doctor.

However, from October 1, adults over 18 can buy nicotine vapes from pharmacies without a prescription by showing their ID. The pharmacist will provide information about the health risks of vaping and suggest alternatives if you’re looking to quit smoking. You can then buy the vape, which will come in plain packaging with limited flavours—mint, menthol, and tobacco.

If you are under 18 years old, the rules remain stricter. You will still need a prescription from a doctor to buy vapes. Health practitioners will determine if it’s appropriate, particularly if it’s intended to help quit smoking.

Why the changes?

The Albanese government has been working on these reforms to tackle the increasing popularity of vaping, especially among young people. Initially, the plan required prescriptions for all nicotine vapes, a move backed by over 50 public health organisations, peak doctor groups, and groups across social work and education. However, a deal with the Greens led to a compromise, allowing adults to buy vapes from pharmacies without a prescription starting in October.

The government aims to control vaping by limiting access to pharmacies while still allowing adults to obtain them more easily. This balance is intended to reduce recreational use among young people while providing an option for those trying to quit smoking.

Is vaping harmful?

While some people see it as a safer alternative to smoking, it’s not without risks. Vaping can have side effects such as coughing, throat irritation, and shortness of breath. Long-term effects are still being studied, but current evidence suggests that vaping is not risk-free. It’s important to be aware of these potential health issues, especially if you are using vapes as a tool to quit smoking.

Understanding these aspects of vaping can help you make informed decisions about your health. If you want to dive deeper into the topic and what the latest research says, you can find more information in our guide, Vaping in Australia: What You Need to Know.