Vaping vs. Smoking: Cost Comparison – A Comprehensive Mathematical Breakdown

When it comes to comparing vaping and smoking, the conversation often revolves around health implications. However, another significant aspect that is worth considering is the cost. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the financial aspect of vaping and smoking by comparing their costs in detail. We’ll break down the expenses associated with both habits and explore the math behind the numbers. By the end of this post, you’ll have a clearer understanding of how much you might save by choosing one over the other.

Initial Costs

Vaping - Initial Costs

The initial investment in a vaping device varies depending on the type and quality of the product. For our comparison, we’ll consider three main categories of vaping devices: disposable e-cigarettes, vape pens, and advanced box mods.

a. Disposable e-cigarettes: $5-$10 each 
b. Vape pens (starter kits): $20-$50
c. Advanced box mods: $50-$200

Smoking - Initial Costs

The initial cost of smoking is relatively low, as you only need to purchase cigarettes and a lighter. However, we should also consider the cost of a pack of cigarettes, which varies by location and brand. For this comparison, we will use the average cost of a pack of cigarettes in the United States, which is around $7.

Monthly Costs

Vaping – Monthly

The monthly cost of vaping depends on several factors, such as the frequency of use, the type of vaping device, and the cost of e-liquid. The average vaper consumes about 3-5ml of e-liquid per day. Considering an average price of $15 for a 30ml bottle of e-liquid, we get the following cost estimates:

a. Disposable e-cigarettes / vapes: 30 days x $5-$10 = $150-$300
b. Vape pens: (30 days x 3-5ml/day) x ($15/30ml) = $45-$75
c. Advanced box mods: (30 days x 3-5ml/day) x ($15/30ml) = $45-$75

Smoking Monthly

For smoking, the monthly cost is determined by the number of packs smoked per day and the cost of a pack of cigarettes. Let’s assume an average smoker consumes one pack of cigarettes per day:

a. 30 days x $7/pack = $210

Yearly Costs

Vaping – Yearly Cost

To calculate the yearly cost of vaping, we’ll multiply the monthly cost by 12, considering that the device cost will be distributed over its lifespan (about 1-2 years).

a. Disposable e-cigarettes: ($150-$300) x 12 = $1,800-$3,600
b. Vape pens: (($20-$50) + ($45-$75) x 12) = $560-$950
c. Advanced box mods: (($50-$200) + ($45-$75) x 12) = $590-$1,100

Smoking – Cost Per Year

The yearly cost of smoking can be calculated by multiplying the monthly cost by 12:

a. ($210) x 12 = $2,520


Based on our calculations, vaping with a reusable device (vape pen or advanced box mod) is generally more cost-effective than smoking in the long run, with yearly savings ranging from $1,570 to $1,930. Disposable e-cigarettes, however, can be more expensive than smoking. It’s essential to keep in mind that these numbers are based on averages and individual usage habits may vary. The decision to switch from smoking to vaping should also be based on factors beyond cost, such as health considerations and personal preferences.

The Vapers Guide