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Buying cigarettes

If you are under 18 years of age, it is against the law for anyone to sell cigarettes to you. This includes tobacco products, herbal cigarettes, loose smoking blends and personal vaporisers. Anyone who sells cigarettes to a person under 18 can be heavily fined.

Do I have to show ID?

If you’re buying cigarettes and you look like you might be under 18, the shop assistant may ask you to provide Valid ID. Valid ID includes:

  • a drivers’ license; or
  • a proof of age card (including NSW Photo cards); or
  • a passport.

Most staff will ask you to provide ID if you look younger than 25. You cannot be forced to show ID by shop assistants, but if you don’t, they probably won’t sell you cigarettes.

It is against the law to use a fake ID to buy cigarettes.  You can be fined for doing so.  For more information see our Fake ID page.

Can police confiscate my cigarettes if I am under 18?

The police can confiscate your cigarettes if they have a reason to think:

  • you are under 18; and
  • you just bought or were given them by someone who was breaking the law.

You will be asked for ID first.

Where can I smoke?

Indoor areas

In Queensland, it is against the law to smoke in an enclosed place other than someone’s home.  A place is enclosed if it has a roof, and is mostly surrounded by walls (even if there are doors or open passageways).

Some examples of places that are usually enclosed places are:

  • Shopping centres;
  • Indoor restaurants, cafes and dining areas;
  • Pubs, clubs and bars (except designated smoking areas);
  • Indoors at schools, colleges and universities;
  • Community centres, halls and churches;
  • Theatres, libraries and galleries;
  • Public transport (buses, trains, trams, aeroplanes, taxis, ferries);
  • Gyms and sporting facilities;
  • Hospitals.

It is against the law to smoke within 5 metres of the entrance to any of these places.

Outdoor areas

It is also against the law to smoke in outdoor eating and drinking areas of cafes, restaurants and other places that food and drink are served.

Some outdoor areas are also smoke-free areas, like:

  • Sport venues;
  • Patrolled areas of beaches;
  • Near public pools and swimming areas;
  • Near children’s playgrounds.

If you are caught smoking in any of the above places, you can:

  • be given a warning; or
  • be given a formal caution; or
  • be fined on the spot by the police ($261.10); or
  • choose to have the matter decided by a court

It is up to the police whether to give you a warning or a formal caution, but you can always choose to go to court instead.

Can I smoke in a car?

You cannot smoke in a car if there is someone younger than 16 in the car.  The possible penalties are the same as for smoking in other smoke-free areas (above).

Additional information

If you would like more information, you may like to visit:

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