First time vapers value specialist advice in helping them quit conventional cigarettes

  • 57% of vapers say that good advice was instrumental in helping them quit smoking
  • Dedicated vape stores prove to be main and best source of advice versus other retail outlets
  • 90% of current vapers believe that smokers more likely to quit if they access good advice up front
  • More expert advice needed to convert increasing numbers of smokers to far less harmful vaping according to leading vape trade body

More than half of current vapers (57%) have highlighted the criticality of good advice to a successful quit of their smoking habit according to a new study. However, the research conducted by the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) into the level, quality and source of advice that vapers received when they were trying to quit smoking also revealed that there is significant room for improvement in terms of the guidance that smokers can access when making a life changing decision to give up their habit.

Key findings of the research included:

73% of respondents were either very pleased or to some degree happy with the advice they received when looking to make the switch from smoking to vaping; however, a quarter said that the advice was “non existent”.

  • Specialist vape retail stores proved to be the main source of advice (48.9%), but only 2.8% and 1.1% of respondents got guidance from a supermarket and convenience store respectively.
  • In terms of quality of advice, 54.4 % of those who had bought their first vape from a specialist vape store said that the support they received was extremely informative and supportive and this compared with online retail (25%), convenience stores (14.8%) and supermarkets (14.3%).
  • Nearly half felt that they had been asked partly or in full about their lifestyle choices, smoking habits and health goals at the beginning of their vaping journeys; albeit over a third (38.6%) said that none of these aspects had been brought up as part the conversation around starting vaping.
  • Half had received advice about the most appropriate choice of vape device for their smoking habit but 42% had not.
  • 56.8% had received advice on the right nicotine level based on their smoking frequency but just over a third (34.7%) had not.
  • Just 40.9% had been given advice on the best vape flavour for their requirements against 52.3% who had not.
  • Just over a third (38%) had received advice on the challenges that they might face when trying vaping for the first time; with a larger proportion (49.4%) saying that they had not been given any guidance in this area.
  • Less than a quarter (23.9%) had been given any direction on ensuring a sustained quit attempt using vaping if temptation returned to smoke again; with the majority (62%) saying they got no advice on this aspect.
  • Over 90% of current vapers felt that existing smokers stood a better chance of quitting through vaping if good advice was provided in the first instance rather than just being sold a product.
  • Key triggers to starting vaping included poor health (26.7%), financially cheaper than cigarettes (51.7%) and pressure from family (13%).

 

John Dunne, director general of the UKVIA, said: “The research clearly shows the value that vapers place on the advice they received at the outset in helping them switch over from conventional cigarettes. It also highlights that the vast majority of established vapers believe that good advice around the transition to vaping will heighten the chances of smokers quitting their habits in the future. Yet despite this evidence, good advice was seen to be sorely lacking in some areas when smokers were looking to make a decision about vaping as their preferred quit method.

 

“There is a real need for the retail sector and all those who are there to support adult smokers turn a corner in terms of their health – from stop smoking services and the healthcare community, to families, friends and the existing vaping community – to steer them to make the best decision about vape devices, nicotine levels and flavours that will lead them to eventually becoming ex-smokers.”

 

Doug Mutter, a director at VPZ, a major manufacturer and retailer of vape products: “There is a saying in the industry “get the right advice and get the right device”. Everyone is different and there is not a one size fits all solution. Professional support up front is the key – it’s why we set up Vape Clinics in our stores across the UK to provide such high level advice from those who have been there and done it before.”

 

The research was undertaken during VApril, the largest education campaign for smokers interested in using vaping as a quit method. Coordinated by the UKVIA, it is now run worldwide during April.

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