How Much Can I Save By Using Electronic Cigarettes?
Remember the days when cigarettes were cheap and glamorous? No? You’re not alone! The ‘Golden Age’ of smoking (at least as far as tobacco giants were concerned) made tobacco seem sophisticated, sensual and sexy. In the 1950s, an estimated 80 percent of the UK population was hooked on this ‘refined’ habit. It was even considered healthy. A famous Camel ad proclaimed, ‘More doctors smoke Camel than any other cigarette.’ Quite an endorsement.
Today almost everybody is aware of the dangers of smoking. Rather than glamourous, it is seen as dirty. Far from sexy, it is often seen as sleazy – a secret to be hidden as one puffs hurriedly out in the cold. Rates of smoking in the UK have dropped to less than 18 percent. For those hooked, though, smoking is a demon they battle daily. Or, more likely, several times daily. It is extremely hard to give up smoking despite knowing all the health risks. And in addition to the bodily harm, traditional cigarettes inflict serious injury to the wallet.
How can switching to electronic cigarettes save smokers money? And at the same time, earn them some very powerful benefits that extend beyond their budgets?
Going Up In Smoke
In 2003, the average cost of a pack of 20 cigarettes was £4.51. Ten years later, it had soared to nearly £8.00. Of this, an astonishing 77 percent was tax. At nearly £10 today, the price is only climbing. According to some predictions a pack could well top £15 in the next few years.
Let’s put that into perspective. Say that you smoke one pack of cigarettes per day. At a rate of £10, that is £70 per week, £280 per month and £3360 year. At a rate of£15, your costs would be £105 per week, £420 per month and £5040 per year.
At a time of rising living costs, increasing debt and stagnating wages, this is money that most people can ill afford. And remember, the actual cost of the cigarettes does not encompass the entire cost of smoking. What about your health? Insurance premiums? The suits and outfits you leave ruined and reeking of smoke? The teeth you must whiten, repair or replace as tar and chemicals take their toll?
A Cost-Saving Alternative
You likely never heard of Hon Lik, but the Beijing pharmacist plays an important role in your cost savings! In 2003, the then 52-year old pharmacist – and heavy smoker – developed the first electronic cigarette. Three years later, the devices were introduced into Europe, and they have continued to evolve in order to provide more convenient, customisable and, importantly, affordable options for users.
So, how do products like electronic cigarettes, vape pens and personal vaporizers save money?
Electronic Cigarette Starter Kit Costs
It may seem counterintuitive at first: how could purchasing an electronic cigarette, battery, charger and e-liquid cartridges possibly be less expensive than putting down £9 or £10 for a pack of smokes. The quick answer? It isn’t. But stay with us; the news gets better. Rather than buying each of these separately, you can invest in a ‘starter kit.’ This is ideal for those new to vaping, as it includes everything you need.
For the best value, look for a starter kit that comes with a sample pack of cartridges so you can explore different flavours. Now, say that your kit with six cartridges costs £23. Each regularly-sized cartridge for an e-cig has enough e-liquid for about 200 puffs. While each smoker is different, this typically equates to about 20 to 40 cigarettes, or a pack or two per cartridge.
At the conservative estimate of 20 per cartridge, you essentially have six packs of cigarettes for the absurdly low cost of £23. But that’s just the start. You still have the vaporizing unit; when you need to replace the cartridges, another pack of six is less than £10. So that is another 6 packs, or 120 cigarettes, for the cost of a single pack of regular smokes.
As your dependency on traditional cigarettes lessens, the savings only continue to grow.
A Common ‘Side Effect’ of Electronic Cigarettes
Many e-cigarette users report that they find themselves smoking much less frequently when they switch to electronic versions. For those trying to quit, this is a tremendous advantage. While you dial back your nicotine consumption, you also decrease your cravings to smoke at all. This saves even more money as the need to purchase replacement cartridges diminishes.
Another common occurrence when people opt for electronic cigarettes: they purchase multiple cartridges or orders of e-liquid at once. This saves money, and it curbs ‘impulse buying’ at specialty shops caused by running out of vaping supplies, which can be much more expensive.
Traditional cigarettes contain over 7000 chemicals. 7000 truly terrifying chemicals; at least 69 of them are known to cause cancer. Formaldehyde. Cyanide. Arsenic. These are not ‘ingredients’ – they are poisons that, under other circumstances, you would not allow in your home or keep strictly under lock and key.
According to Ash.org, about half of regular smokers will be killed by cigarettes in one way or another:
- 100,000 UK smokers die from smoking-related illnesses each year.
- One-third of respiratory deaths are attributable to smoking.
- Cigarettes cause one-quarter of cancer deaths.
- About one-seventh of heart disease deaths are caused by cigarette smoking.
Traditional smokers are at risk for a host of ailments. Over time, many of these require hospitalisation, extensive therapies, including expensive medications, and loss of work. Smoking also exacerbates other health conditions, such as asthma, arthritis, circulatory issues, sexual dysfunctions and much more.
The impact is far reaching: one study found that smokers have an increased chance of being forced to retire early because of chronic disease. This dramatically cuts into earnings and can reduce quality of life, particularly in the later years when health issues become more prominent.
The costs start to add up, though, well before one is diagnosed with a smoking-related illness. Private health insurance and life insurance premiums are much higher for smokers. And because of the risk of decreased productivity, increased sick leave and the high likelihood of early retirement, many employers are wary of hiring those who smoke tobacco.
In addition to saving money on cigarettes and health concerns, opting to kick the tobacco habit helps you increase your earning potential.
A Matter of Appearances
Cigarette smoke is noxious; it clings to clothing, hair, car upholstery, furniture and other surfaces. It stains. It yellows teeth and nails. In short, it is less than attractive. Purchasing new clothes, paying for dry cleaning, removing odours from cars and homes and stocking up on strong tooth paste and teeth whiteners gets pricy. Yet it is a cost that very few smokers likely factor in to their decision to smoke.
Vaping, on the other hand, produces no odour; and because there is no tar in e-liquid, there is no staining of fingers and clothing. Saving money – and looking and smelling better? Sounds like a win-win.
Other Money-Saving Avenues to Explore
We have explored some of the ways that you can save money by using electronic cigarettes. What else can you do to maximise value from your vaping products?
- Opt for rechargeable electronic cigarettes. Disposable e-cigs are widely available and relatively inexpensive. The trouble is that when you buy them frequently, your costs add up – and unnecessarily so. Try rechargeable models. They are typically of much higher quality than their disposable counterparts. For a slightly larger initial investment, you can begin to enjoy vaping. And saving loads of money.
- Start with a starter kit. As mentioned earlier, these include everything you need to begin vaping in one convenient package.
- Try refillable cartridges. Disposable cartridges are incredibly convenient, but if you are willing to spend just a bit of extra time (really, just a bit), you can increase your savings. Typically, you can purchase e-liquid in 25ml, 50ml or in sample packs (i.e. six 10ml options).
- If you buy a 50ml refill, it may cost about £25 and last about a month – depending, of course, on how deeply you inhale and how frequently you smoke. It could, of course, last much longer, particularly if you are weaning yourself off of nicotine. Compare this to a cost of cigarettes for a month, which could easily run over £100.
- Purchase high quality e-liquid. If you choose to refill your cartridges, always use high quality e-liquid. How do you know what ‘high quality’ is? Read the ingredients list. And if you cannot find an ingredients list, keep shopping. Many e-liquid suppliers do not disclose this information to buyers. Cigarettes are notorious for having hidden compounds; why switch to an e-liquid with the same disregard for transparency?
- Rather than a laundry list of unpronounceable – and deadly – chemical compounds, your e-liquid list should be much, much shorter, and, of course, much, much safer. Look for pure, laboratory tested products. Not only is it safer, buying the good stuff ensures you won’t be stuck with 50ml of foul, tarry-tasting e-liquid that does nothing but put a dent in your wallet.
- Buy online. Specialty stores are often priced much higher than online shops. You can save money by planning ahead and ordering your supplies from reputable vendors.
- Watch for special offers. Whether the vendor offers special holiday deals or clearance sales, these are great opportunities to stock up on electronic cigarettes, e-liquid, cartridges, charging accessories and more. Some vendors also have newsletters; with a free subscription, you can access exclusive deals to save even more.
- Consider completing larger orders. Some e-liquid suppliers, such as V2 Cigs offer free shipping for orders over a certain amount. Remember, every bit adds up. Try ordering in bulk or larger quantities;it can also curb the necessity of running to a specialty store and overpaying when you run out of e-liquid, e-cigs or other related items.
- Look for warranties. Reputable suppliers stand behind their products. Look for those that offer a warranty; these typically cover damage and defect when the products are used as intended. Another important step before you make a purchase is to inquire as to the returns policy;you never want to be stuck with a faulty product with no recourse.
- Properly care for and clean your vaping supplies. Your electronic cigarettes or other vaping products should come with care instructions; read them and obey! Doing so will help prolong the life of your products and help keep the flavour and vapor cloud clean and robust.
- Thinking of making the switch to electronic cigarettes? These cost cutting tips should provide more than enough motivation. But if you need a bit more incentive, take a minute to image what you will do with all the money that you have saved by stopping the tobacco habit.
How will you spend your savings!
Will you take the holiday you have always wanted? Will you invest more in your retirement? Perhaps you will save up for a car or a down payment on a home? Or will you just enjoy going out to dinner with your significant other or to the pub with your mates without worrying about the pricy albatross of cigarettes? Imagine the possibilities – all the while enjoying the flavour and convenience of vaping.
Just a few generations ago, cigarettes were chic – and cheap. Today, though, the costs have grown exponentially. Monetary costs are, of course, the most hard felt in the short term, but costs to your career, insurance premiums, pension savings and health accumulate over time.
Make the e-switch today, and start seeing the savings tomorrow. You will feel better, smell nicer and have more money for the items and experiences that you really want to enjoy in life.