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Smokers Can Save Money With E Cigs
Believe the advertising: e cigs are cheaper than regular cigarettes. There are exceptions, such as the overpriced brands (Smoke 51 comes to mind) and scams (Lift Vapor). Some brands sell good products but their replacement cartomizers cost too much (South Beach Smoke and Vaporfi have high priced cartridges, for example). While high-priced cartomizers are something to watch out for, even South Beach Smoke and Vaporfi products are cheaper than analogs overall and they carry e liquid as an alternative.
Mini Cigs: the Early Options
I’m speaking specifically of rechargeable e cigs, not disposables. One-time-use e cigs are potential money savers, but out of over 20 there is probably one that dies too soon, so it’s not the money-saver you expected. The number of puffs advertised on the package is usually a huge over-statement too. Even given these problems, disposable electronic cigarettes will save you a little bit of money.
Rechargeable e cig batteries last up to around 300 charges. Replacements can cost as much as $20, which is excessive, about $15 being average. These batteries work for about 3 to 6 months.
Refill cartomizers are your biggest expense at between $1.79 and $3 each (measuring about 1 ml) when you buy packets of 5 one at a time. Monthly auto-shipments and bulk orders reduce the price, sometimes impressively, but you are always paying a premium for the convenience of mess-free vaping. Any brand that supplies re-usable cartomizers or sells blanks also gives users the option to use e liquid by the bottle, which works out at up to $1 per ml, about $0.60 on average.
Once you reach this stage and are comfortable refilling cartomizers without losing many drips (or even using clear mini cartomizers compatible with e cigs, like the ones for a Halo G6), vaping becomes cheaper indeed.
How to Really Save Money with E Cigs
In the beginning, you might not even use an American brand of e cig. Wherever retailers carry multiple brands of e cigs and lots of early-vaping starter kits, you can find a JoyeTech, SmokTech, or an Innokin package that costs less and works as well.
Some of these are 510 mini cigs very similar to V2 Cigs and 777 E Cig, etc., but there are eGo devices too and they are only slightly bigger than cigalikes. Stick with these well-known brands and a company that backs its products (replacing DOA batteries, for example) and you can vape for even less than you would with a cigalike from Vaporfi or Halo. There are still the small-battery frustrations, but a realistic feel and easy-to-use format.
How to Lose Your Way
There is a possibility that vaping will cost you more money than smoking ever did. Here’s how it happens. E liquid companies make juice that costs a lot more than average but you buy it because it tastes so good, is made in the United States, or it contains organic ingredients. You become like the shopper who once loved boxed pasta dinners until she ate at an authentic Italian restaurant. Nothing is the same after that; you can’t go back. Now it’s top class juice or nothing, and that comes at a price.
Then you find that those juices don’t work very well in average-priced atomizers. You need a dripping atomizer for high-vegetable glycerin e liquids and those cost more money. Another scenario is that as you learn more, you become intoxicated by all of the fancy machinery, which isn’t necessary but makes vaping more fun. You become a hobbyist, shopping for mechanical e cigs and APVs the way some people shop for radio-controlled toys. Simple is no longer good enough; vaping ceased to be just an alternative to smoking long ago.
Let’s pull back from that financial precipice and return to the guy who stopped smoking by using e cigs. He wants to know how much money he will save. The worst case scenario (unless you choose products by scam artists) is about 40%.
Several companies write the equivalent cost of a pack at their prices (how many puffs of an e cig vs. analog puffs). You could be paying about $1.50 per “pack” in maintenance mode, after you have bought all the equipment. There are loads of charts you can refer to including comparisons by brand. The only way for this to get out of hand would be to buy lots of accessories: battery wraps, lanyards, rhinestone batteries, and so on.
Just be careful you don’t forget to calculate shipping into your mathematical formulae. If shipping is always free (rarely is this the case), you have nothing to worry about. If shipping is free after a certain price (usually $50 or more), then you either have to stock up on e liquid and batteries with every order, join with friends to make big purchases, or put up with chargers. Buying from brick-and-mortar stores is fine, but they usually charge more than online retailers.