Is vaping cheaper than smoking – E-cigarette costs explained

Posted by Jamie Morgan on

Is vaping cheaper than E-cigarettes or “vapes” are an alternative to smoking real cigarettes but without actual smoke and a fraction of the harmful chemicals, but is vaping cheaper than smoking as well?

The answer is yes and I am about to show you why.

My name is Mark Frost-Foster from the e-cigarette educational website and it is my pleasure to show you exactly how much money you could really be saving.

In today's guide I will be discussing:

  • The current price of cigarettes and e-cigarettes
  • A real life comparison of costs
  • A simple method to calculate how much extra money could be in your pocket

If you want learn how vaping can save you a ton of money then please continue as I begin.

The price of cigarettes and e-cigarettes 

To keep things simple, I am going to use a pack of 20 cigarettes at a cost of £9.00 as a point of reference. I think this is a fair enough price and may even lean towards the cheaper brands out there. It's been a few years since I last smoked so please forgive me if I have under estimated a little bit.

I will also assume that you are a moderate smoker consuming between 10-20 cigarettes per day. Again this is an average, if you smoke more or less than this, my last part of the guide will still be able to calculate your savings.

So based on a packet of 20 costing £9 per pack, a smoker of 10 per day will be spending £45 per week, and a smoker of 20 would be spending £90 per week. I know, I've been there, done that...

Now let's see what the same smoker would be spending if they vaped instead.

Again to keep thing's simple, lets focus on the price of the consumable e-liquid for an average user.

For a premium 10ml bottle of e-liquid, pre filled with nicotine, you could expect to pay around £4 per bottle but there are cheaper ones out there.

Now the thing about vaping is that you can get stronger liquids without affecting the price of the e-liquid. It is almost like the nicotine is free, you pay for the liquid and get any strength that you want.

Because of this, I will use a max strength e-liquid and a minimum strength e-liquid so that you can see both ends of the table.

Starting with the max strength e-liquid, which is 18mg of nicotine per 1ml of e-liquid, you could expect a smoker of 20 a day to make this bottle last 3 or more days. In fact for that £4 bottle of e-liquid, you are getting the equivalent to 180 cigarettes of nicotine in that one bottle.

Now there is a catch, the nicotine delivery is not as efficient in e-cigarettes as real cigarettes so vaping a bottle of e-liquid in this strength is not the same as smoking 180 cigarettes, more like half of that. That is why a single bottle will last around 3 days.

And the low strength bottle of e-liquid? Still the same price of £4 and equivalent to 30 cigarettes in actual nicotine content. Again like the high strength, its closer to 20 because of the nicotine delivery efficiency so that would mean a smoker of 20 per day will use a single bottle of e-liquid per day.

That is still less than half the price of the same pack of cigarettes!

And for the high strength it is like paying £4 for three packets of cigarettes, do you remember the last time you paid that for a pack?

A real life comparison of costs

Now that you know that vaping is cheaper than smoking, let me show you a real life example of how much money I have saved.

It was 5 years ago so I was only really paying around £7.50 for a pack of 20 and my first vape pen that I bought cost me £25 from a local petrol station. It came with a bottle of e-liquid so that was a bonus.

I was a 10 per day smoker so that £7.50 spent on cigarettes lasted me two days. That free bottle of e-liquid was 10ml and lasted me 4 days. I had spent £25 for 4 days worth of satisfying my nicotine instead of £15 on cigarettes, I'm down £10.

Now the magic starts. I buy three bottles of e-liquid for £10 because of a deal that was in store and they each lasted me 4 days. That was 12 days of nicotine craving suppression for only £10 instead of the £45.00 I would have spent on cigarettes during that time.

Kerching! Now I am up £25 if you include the investment of the e-cigarette pen that I had bought the first time.

Over the next two weeks I consumed another 6 bottles costing £20 and had saved a total of £100! Because I pretended to buy cigarettes while I was vaping by setting aside the daily price of my old smoking habit, I had a little over £100 in my smoking jar and took my partner out on a great evening dinner, all paid for by the money that I had saved.

Over the last 5 years of vaping I couldn't even say how much money I have now saved, but it is in the thousands of pounds.

A simple method to calculate how much YOU could be saving

Want to live a smoke free life and save tons of cash? Check out this simple method to calculate how much you can save and realise all of the things you could do with that money back in your pocket!

Step one

Set aside a small upfront cost of your device. You are not going to need to buy more than one unless you decide to so think of it as the equivalent of a nice fancy lighter. For a decent vape pen that will satisfy your cravings well you should spend around £20-£30

There are other small costs to consider with e-cigs but I will work that maths in to the savings for you.

Step two

Choose a strength. Remember earlier when I mentioned that there are high strength liquids and low strength liquids? You will need to pick one because different strength e-liquids require different devices to use them.

To help you decide I will break it down in to two choices:

High strength nicotine e-liquids are the best option for smokers of 20 cigarettes per day who want to save money as their main focus for switching. You will need to buy a device supports mouth to lung “MTL” and has a coil rated above 1.0Ohm (the coil rating is available on a product description page when buying your device. Alternatively popping in to your local vape shop will allow you to ask in person which devices are suitable)

Low strength nicotine e-liquids are the best option to choose if you smoke 10-20 cigarettes or less per day and want the huge range of exciting flavours as your main reason to switch to e-cigarettes. You will still save a lot money with this option and you will be opening up the doors to the best vaping experience and flavours available. You will want a direct to lung “DTL” device for any of the low strength e-liquids and a device that is designed for sub-Ohm vaping (rated less than 1.0Ohm)

Step three

The secret formula! Well hopefully not that secret, I want you to see how much money you can save and this is how you do it.

If you chose the high strength option then the maths is really simple.

Packets of cigarettes per day X 30 days X £9.00 is your monthly cost on cigarettes

Packets of cigarettes per day X 10 days X £4.00 is you premium e-liquid vaping spend per month

Cigarette costvaping spend = your savings.

Using this formula, these are the common savings of a smoker:

  • 10 cigarettes per day = about £115 per month savings
  • 20 cigarettes per day = about £230 per month savings
  • 30 cigarettes per day = about £345 per month savings
  • 40 cigarettes per day = about £460 per month savings

Yes there is a cost of replacing coils but for high strength nicotine devices, this cost is about the same as replacing your lighter, and also about as frequent so no point in including them.

If you chose the low strength option then here is the maths you will need, plus a side tip!

The side tip first! One of the great benefits of the low nicotine strength option is that you can save a ton of money by buying nicotine free e-liquid and adding a shot of nicotine to it (known as a short-fill). This is because nicotine free e-liquid can be sold in larger bottles so they are cheaper to produce and the savings are astonishing.

Instead of paying £4 per 10ml for a premium bottle of e-liquid, you can buy a 120ml short-fill for only £9.99 and get an amazing flavour of e-liquid here at and £2.00 for the two nicotine shots you will need to add to it. This will cost you a total of £11.99 for the equivalent of twelve bottles of e-liquid!

You will also have an increased number of coils to replace so I will add that in to the maths.

Packets of cigarettes per day X 30 days X £9.00 is your monthly spend on cigarettes

Packets of cigarettes per day X 2.5 days X £12.00 + £3 per 10 cigarette packs is your monthly vaping spend.

If you buy your e-liquids else where, the cost is a bit higher but you can use this formula to work out the vaping spend (based on equal quality brands on the high street using a typical 60ml short-fill):

Packets of cigarettes per day X 5 days X £20.00 + £3 per 10 cigarette packs is your monthly vaping spend.

Cigarette costvaping spend = your savings.

The £3 per 10 cigarette packs is your coil replacement frequency and cost. If you smoke a pack a day, then this is going to be 3 X £2 or £6 per month on coils

Using this formula, here is how much money smokers can save:

  • 10 cigarettes per day = about £115 per month saving with the eflavourz short-fill
  • 10 cigarettes per day = about £79 per month saving with a high street brand
  • 20 cigarettes per day = about £230 per month savings with the eflavourz short-fill
  • 20 cigarettes per day = about £158 per month savings with a high street brand


From the data I have presented to you, I hope you can see how much money you can save by switching to e-cigarettes instead of smoking.

Of course there are products to consider like upgrading your device but you can do that later on with the money you have saved from smoking and still have a ton left over for what ever you want.

Using the example savings per month in the previous section, a smoker of 20 cigarettes could save around £2800 per year by setting their cigarette money aside when ever they vape. What would you buy with £2800 when you crack open the piggy bank at the end of the year? A cruise? The deposit on a new car? A 5* holiday to the Caribbean? What ever you decide to do with it, the sooner you switch the sooner it will be yours.

Thank you very much for reading, if this post has helped you and could help a friend, please share the link on social media and help spread the word.

Mark Frost-Foster

Guest posting on behalf of

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