If you ever board a flight and find your seatmate pulling out an e-cigarette, you’re most likely within your rights to ask a flight attendant to halt the “vaping.” This, despite a claim on a website called “Electronic Cigarette Consumer Reviews” that suggest it’s OK to smoke an e-cigarette aloft if you’re sneaky about it.
“Vaping” ought to be as verboten as regular smoking on an airplane, I think, and most major airlines agree. But despite a move years ago by the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration to issue a blanket rule, the agencies tossed the question to airlines.
Today most if not all US airlines ban the smoking of e-cigarettes, though some pro-smoking web sites such as BluCigs.com suggests you ask each airline. To its credit, the site also suggests your ask your seatmates if they mind, adding that perhaps when they learn more about e-cigs, they’ll decide to join the club.
You’re permitted to carry your e-cig paraphernalia in your carry-on baggage, as long as you comply with the three-ounce rule for liquids. One pro-e-sig site says you might be able to get away with smoking in a lavatory, but then adds, “But we didn’t tell you that.”
Right. Because vaping can set off an airplane lavatory smoke detector. Why the FAA can’t issue a firm rule is beyond me.