New laws coming into effect will make vaping illegal for people living or visiting Singapore, even if they happen to partake in the controversial activity within the privacy of their own homes. Currently, it is only against the law to sell, import, or distribute electronic cigarettes, and there are no penalties for mere possession or use of vaping devices in private dwellings. But all that is about to change in the coming months since the passing of new regulations last November.
According to The Strait Times, buying, using, or even owning an e-cig, e-pipe, or e-cigar will be considered illegal in Singapore, which is leading many local vapers to consider a permanent transition back to smoking. Other neighboring nations are also considering similar laws.
In fact, just last week, an elderly couple vacationing in Thailand was threatened with imprisonment for merely possessing a vaping device in public. They didn’t go to jail, but they did receive a hefty fine of 4,000 NIS or about $1177 USD. The event occurred last Thursday, and the story is going global.
Beware of vaping in Singapore and Thailand
Vaping in Thailand is one thing, but apparently Singapore officials are taking perhaps the most extreme anti-vaping stance in the world. The Jerusalem Post reports that the following warning even appears as a travel advisory on the National Security Council’s website.
“The Foreign Ministry recommends that Israelis refrain from entering the country [Thailand] with an electronic cigarette. A person found to be breaking the law may be fined, tried and imprisoned.”
Much like in the United States, government officials of both Thailand and Singapore are under the impression that vaping is a gateway to smoking, particularly among teens and young adults. In an effort to “de-normalize” vaping, Singapore’s Parliamentary Secretary for Health Amrin Amin spearheaded the new regulations.
Will vapers secretly using e-cigs in the privacy of their own homes be suddenly at risk of midnight raids by anti-vaping SWAT teams breaking down their doors and leading them off to jail in handcuffs? Most likely not, but the possibility will soon exist as the new Singapore vaping laws go into effect in just a few short weeks.
For Americans traveling to this destination on business or pleasure, they should think twice before flashing those newfangled vape mods in public. Even though they may not be actively vaping it at the time, they still run the risk of being detained, fined, and thrown into prison simple because of sheer possession. Vaping in Singapore is no laughing matter, and cloudchasing is definitely a huge no-no!