Can I Vape in a Non-Smoking Hotel Room?

Smoking an e-cigarette isn’t the same as traditional smoking – everyone knows that. 

But maybe you’ve found yourself on vacation, lounging around your hotel room, and your gaze lands on the “non-smoking” sign on the wall.

And you ask yourself, is vaping considered smoking? Could I get away with it?

The answer, unfortunately, is short and sweet: you cannot vape in a non-smoking hotel room. 

But the reasons why are a little more complex. So in this article, we’re going to take a deeper look at the common rules for vaping in most hotels.

So, Can I Vape in the Non-Smoking Hotel Room?

No, you cannot vape inside non-smoking hotel rooms.

We know the vapor produced from vaping devices is not the same as cigarette smoke, but hotels have various reasons for making non-smoking policies. 

Let’s take a look at the big three:

  • Fire hazards – this obviously isn’t a concern with e-cigarettes, but this is the big one with traditional tobacco products. People can be pretty irresponsible with their cigarettes or cigars: they burn carpets; they burn furniture; they burn bedding. They can even start fires and burn the place down! So while this is the only element of vaping that isn’t the same as cigarette smoking, it’s a big part of the general ban on smoking in many hotels.
  • Lingering smell – after cigarettes (or worse, cigars) have been smoked in a room, it’s almost impossible to air out the smell. While people can become nose blind to tobacco products or their vape pens, these things can leave a lingering odor that might disturb future patrons. Even a THC or flavor-only vape can (and usually will) leave odors behind for a few days. So, while cotton candy may be pleasant to you, it can take time and effort for hotel staff to get that scent out of the bedding.
  • Secondhand smoke or vapor – any products that create smoke or vapor may be upsetting, disruptive, or harmful to other hotel guests. Secondhand “smoke” from electronic cigarettes is less toxic than traditional cigarettes but not non-toxic. It’s not known precisely how harmful vapor is to those who smoke it either firsthand or secondhand – so until it’s proven harmless, it can still be a risk. Moreover, when a substance that is not entirely legal is introduced into the mix (such as medical marijuana), proper regulation can be complicated for hotel management. 

So, out of the three major issues with smoking, vaping shares two of them. There isn’t really a compelling reason for hotels to allow people to smoke or vape in their rooms – for them, it’s all downsides and no real upside.

What if My E-liquid Is Just Flavor?

It can be hard to see why, for instance, a raspberry flavored vape, without any nicotine, might be banned. But at the end of the day, it all comes back to the smell. 

Not only can flavored e-juice leave residual odors in the hotel room, but the vapor can escape through the air conditioning vent (or another air vent) and disturb other guests.

Furthermore, a hotel cannot distinguish between a nicotine vape, a flavored vape, or a THC vape. Because the hotel can’t make this distinction, enforcing a blanket ban against vaping is much easier.

Can Vaping Set Off Smoke Detectors?

You shouldn’t think you can get away with vaping in a non-smoking hotel room just because e-cigarettes don’t produce smoke. 

Blowing vapor can absolutely set off smoke alarms in hotel rooms.

Most fire alarms/smoke detectors are also activated by water vapor. If you’ve ever had to deal with a smoke alarm at home after a hot shower, you’ll understand how you can trigger the fire alarm in a hotel with your vape device.

If vaping activates the smoke detector in a hotel room, you’ll likely incur an additional cleaning fee, which can be very expensive. 

Setting off a smoke alarm also creates an emergency that hotel staff must address according to hotel policies and the law. These situations are taken very seriously and can lead to severe consequences. 

Is It Legal to Deny Vaping?

Some people wonder if it’s legal to stop someone from doing what they want in their own hotel room. But again, yes, it is.

Think about it like this: every time you book a hotel room, you agree to the hotel’s terms. If you violate these policies, they have the right to ask you to leave. 

And if you don’t, you’re trespassing, and then things can get complicated for you.

Now, a hotel isn’t necessarily saying it’s against the law to vape in your hotel room; they’re saying it’s against their policies. 

But in some cases, non-smoking policies exist because they are the law, and the hotels must obey them.

In many jurisdictions, public, shared spaces are non-smoking areas by law, so you can’t vape in most malls, restaurants, or retail establishments there. Some municipalities don’t permit people to smoke cigarettes or e-cigarettes within a certain distance from a doorway. 

In these places, hotels may have to follow similar rules. So when you’re visiting, be mindful of local laws, and try to figure out the designated smoking areas before you hit your vape.

What If You Want to Vape?

Some people use vaping as a management technique for nicotine withdrawal or other medical issues.

Depending on where you go, some hotels will offer a smoking hotel room. There may be fewer smoking hotel rooms available (they’re usually in the more well-ventilated areas of the hotel), but they do still exist.

In a non-smoking hotel, you could always talk to the front desk and ask about their vaping policies. While most hotel rooms have a vaping policy that correlates with a non-smoking policy, not all of them do. 

Some hotels haven’t adjusted their policies to account for vaping.

And hotels usually won’t stop you from vaping outside – there is usually a designated smoking area where you can vape. 


Many hotels treat cigarettes and e-cigarettes the same – you aren’t allowed to smoke either in your hotel room.

While an e-cigarette doesn’t carry the same fire risk, they still contribute to unpleasant odors and can incur room-cleaning charges if you break the rules. Also, the vapor can set off sensitive smoke alarms, so it’s not even worth the hassle.

Also, some vapes contain nicotine or THC. It’s considered unhealthy and harmful to vape within an enclosed space or subject others to secondhand vapor.

While most hotels offer guests a non-smoking room, some still permit smoking in their rooms. 

Before you vape in your room, you should confirm the hotel rules – they have laws and policies to follow, and these can vary from place to place.