Smoking ban on famous Thailand beaches – risk of huge fines or prison for breaking e-cigarette law

The Thai Authorities are tightening the rules for smoking on some of the most famous Thai beaches.

Locals or tourists who are caught smoking outside the designated smoking zones on the Thai beaches are fined heavily, and in repeat cases, will risk a jail sentence for breaking the smoking ban.

Higher fines and tougher enforcement is introduced after 140.000 cigarette butts have been collected from an only 2,5 km / 1,6 mile long stretch of the famous Patong beach on the island of Phuket.

Patong Beach
Sunny Phuket Patong beach – strictly no smoking except for in the smoking areas

Thailand beaches smoking ban – which beaches?
The new increased fines for breaking the Thai smoking ban is in force on the following holiday hotspots:

  • Phuket beaches – including in particular Patong Beach
  • Phang Nga – including Ko Khai Nok & Ko Khai Nai
  • Pattaya Beach
  • Krabi – Phra Beach and Khlong Dao on Ko Lanta
  • Ko Lanta – Khlong Beach
  • Ko Samui – Chaweng Beach / Bo Phut

Full list of beaches with smoking ban on the link below.

The fine for breaking the smoking ban in Thailand could be as much as 100.000 Bath (equal to some €2450, £2200 or $3000). In more serious cases, up to one year in prison could be the result of smoking when at Phuket or Pattaya beaches.

The smoking ban on Thailand’s beaches was introduced in November 2017. Authorities warn that from February 1st 2018, the ban will be enforced much more rigorously and fines will be issued.

More information on the TAT website.

Ban on electronic cigarettes also known as vaping – totally illegal in Thailand
For holiday makers travelling to Thailand, it is worth noting that all forms of the modern ‘vaping’ electronic cigarettes are highly illegal on the same level as using drugs in Thailand. In other words, it is a serious offense to use an e-cigarette or even to have e-cigarettes in your luggage or in your pocket.

In Western countries, the electronic cigarettes are considered a way for smokers to quit the very unhealthy, traditional cigarettes. In Thailand, this approach of ditching a bad habit, however, is not an option.

It is illegal to sell, purchase, use and even to bring electronic cigarettes into Thailand. Thai authorities view electronic cigarettes as contraband and it is considered a serious drug smuggling offence to even possess the E-cigarettes.  If a person is caught with vaping cigarettes at the border he or she should consider himself/herself lucky if the vaping equipment is thrown away and no charges are pressed by Thailand border police. 

Chewang Beach
Chaweng Beach on Koh Samui.

More visitors to Thailand in 2018
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) expects 2018 to be the best year ever for tourism in the Southeast Asian country. 

In 2017, 35 million tourists visited (+ 9% compared to 2016). In 2018, the TAT expects the number of tourists to increase by another 6%.

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Smoking ban on famous Thailand beaches – risk of huge fines or prison for breaking e-cigarette law
Article: Smoking ban on famous Thailand beaches – risk of huge fines or prison for breaking e-cigarette law
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