Can you vape on a plane? Flying with vape – the rules!

Vaping has become very popular in recent years as more people try to give up smoking tobacco and are turning to vape instead. So it is not surprising that so many people ask can you vape on a plane.

I am sorry to disappoint you but no, you cannot vape on a plane. You can take it with you but you need to know where you can carry it otherwise it may be confiscated.

Vaping on a plane is illegal in the US and many other countries and can carry stiff penalties. If you do vape then you could be prosecuted and banned from flying on that airline again.

Can vaping set off smoke alarms?

Can you vape on a plane?

The smoke detectors in the aircraft toilets can also detect vape in certain circumstances, even though it is not technically smoke. So if this happens the alarm will sound and you will be found out.

Is it worth taking the risk of having a sneaky vape? If you get caught then at best it could be embarrassing and at worst could put you in deep trouble. You can read about what happened to one passenger who got caught vaping in the toilet.

I have heard that they are working on a sensor to detect vape as well as smoke and if that happens you will definitely be caught out.

Can you vape in airport terminals?

Rules vary from airport to airport and country to country. But generally you cannot vape in the main area of the terminal or departure lounge. If there are designated smoking areas at the airport, or an outside area, you are allowed to vape there.

If you will be flying out of a UK airport you may find my article “Can you smoke in UK and Irish airports? A full list of airport smoking areas” of interest.

Can you take vape on a plane?

You are allowed to bring vape on a plane to use at your destination but it is not quite as straightforward as you may think when taking vape through airport security. Neither is it as logical as you may think, and this is largely due to the batteries not the vape itself.

  • You can take vape ONLY in your carry on hand luggage or on your person in your pocket.
  • You CANNOT put vape in your checked baggage/hold luggage.

This actually catches people out quite frequently so please do not put your e-cigarettes and vaping devices in your suitcase as checked baggage. This can cause delays, they may be confiscated and you may be prosecuted.

Why can’t you put vaping devices in checked bags?

E-cigarettes and vaping devices generally contain lithium batteries. These can overheat and catch fire so if this happened in the cabin it can be dealt with by the cabin crew whereas if it happened in the baggage hold it cannot.

See my other article on lithium batteries – Can you take lithium batteries on a plane?

Can I take an electronic cigarette in my carry on bag?

Yes. Battery-powered E-cigarettes, vape pens, vaporizers, atomizers and electronic nicotine delivery systems may only be carried in the aircraft cabin as they cannot go in your checked bags in the aircraft baggage hold. See the TSA guide here.

e-cigarette airport security rules

e-cigarette airport security rules

When going through airport security you must remove all e cigarettes and vaping devices from your carry on bags and your pockets and put them separately in a tray to go through the x-ray machines. If you don’t then you will be stopped and have to go through the hassle to remove them for them to be put through security again.

To make this process even easier, and avoid unnecessary problems, follow these steps:

  • Disconnect all of the e cigarettes from their batteries
  • Put them in a separate see-through plastic bag
  • Put e-liquid separate (see section below) in a resealable plastic bag

Can you bring vape liquid on a plane?

Yes you can take vape liquid/ejuice on a plane but you must remember the rules regarding the carrying of liquids on a plane. Bottles less than 100ml (3.4 ounces) can be carried in your cabin baggage and bottles over this size must go in your checked bags in the hold.

You must remember though that you are only allowed to bring a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes in your carry-on bag through the airport security in total per person per bag. You can buy quart-sized approved liquids bags here.

Since many vape juice bottles are often 120ml (ie over the 100ml TSA liquids rule size) then it may be worth purchasing some empty 100ml bottles to put your vape juice into.

Can I charge my e-cigarette on the plane?

No! Under no circumstances are you permitted to charge your device while on board the aircraft. This is due to the potential risk of overheating and fire.

Why can’t you vape on a plane?

There are two issues that have led to the ban on vaping on a plane:

  1. Firstly, it is believed that there is a potential fire risk when using a vape
  2. The air quality in a plane is an issue so if there were people using vape the air quality would be compromised. Flying in an enclosed tube is unhealthy enough with peoples cold and flu germs circulating so adding vape to this could only make matters worse.

    I am old enough to remember when smoking cigarettes was allowed on a plane and I can tell you, as a non-smoker, it was pretty unpleasant. That was particularly true if you were sitting near the back of the plane, near, or even within, the smoking section.

Should you be able to vape on a plane?

From a personal point of view I fully endorse the ban on vaping in a plane. Vaping and smoking in a confined space around people who neither vape nor smoke is totally antisocial.

I don’t care if it is totally harmless (although that is actually questionable) as I don’t want to spend hours sitting next to someone breathing in their vapor cloud.

I am old enough to remember how awful flying was before the smoking ban was introduced, particularly if you were unlucky enough to end up in the smoking section at the back of the plane.

I hope this has answered your questions regarding can you take e-cigarettes on a plane. Please leave a comment if you wish.

You may also want to look at my other airport security articles:

The complete guide to passing through airport security quickly

What is not allowed in checked baggage?

Can you take lithium batteries on a plane?

Are shaving razors allowed in carry on bags?

Will aerosol cans explode in checked luggage?