Now smokers are being charged to smoke...

5 May 2011

cigarettesIf cigarettes weren’t expensive enough, now smokers are being charged for the privilege of smoking their nicotine-filled pleasure sticks.

Belfast International Airport is the first UK airport to charge smokers for that final puff before committing to refraining until arriving at their destination. The charge is £1, payable by inserting  a coin into a machine which then opens doors to a special smoking area.

Two rent-a-quotes found by the BBC said "You had to pay £1 into a machine and the door would open into the smoking area. We talked to other smokers and they didn't like having to pay £1.” You don’t say.

But perhaps they would have been happier, had the smokers’ enclosure been a more salubrious environment, complaining about it being "a small room, 10ft by 6ft. They seems to have wire mesh on either side and it was probably about two storeys up."

In a statement, the airport said: "We recognised that there was a demand for a smoking facility from some customers, given that all public places (including airports) are now, and have been for a number of years, non-smoking.”

“We are responding to that demand. However providing a specialist facility for a relatively small number of users is expensive to build and to maintain, so it is not unreasonable that a small charge should be levied for the use of the facility."

Whether the trend will carry across the water to the mainland remains to be seen. As does whether smokers will be so desperate for that last drag that they will pay through the nose...

TOPICS:   Health


  • Darren
    hahahahahaha. Can I start charging people £1 if they smoke on the same street as me. I think that is the next move! Please pay up!
  • Smokey j.
    As ridiculous as it is, most smokers would pay it wouldnt they? I know i would, i'd probably do a tenner going in and out, particularly after the stress of going through passport control, getting frisked by a spotty eighteen year old intent on humiliating me whilst i skulk about in my odd socks, beltless trousers around my ankles, as my potentially explosive loafers are eyed suspiciously by an entire team of West Londons finest security personnel.
  • The B.
    Smoking rooms in airports are vile things, last week I walked into one in Suvarnabhumi airport, which is a really nice airport but the smoking room is vile, Iwalked straight back out again, I'd rather not smoke, mind you it was better than the one in Phuket. I certainly wouldn't pay for it.
  • kv
    can those already in the smoking room not just open the door to let others in for free?
  • Mike
    It's about time that smokers were penalised in airports in the same way that us toilet users are penalised in train stations across the UK
  • The B.
    Mike, if you want to suffer the ultimate in pay toilets, try the one at Clapham Junction, they charge you 30p to use a toilet that wouldn't look out of place in a 3rd World country.
  • DragonChris
    Suits me fine. Yeooooo Belfast! Unless the door operates on a turnstyle basis, I don't see why a few smokers couldn't club together 20p each and walk through the door together...
  • Bazinga
    Is this not just like making the beer/food more expensive in an airport? Yes.
  • Dick
    If I have to pay to use a toilet, then I make sure I get my money's worth and piss or shit on the floor. The company then need to make sure a cleaner is in attendance to clean it up.
  • Paddywaggon
    I can see the Sky Marshall working out how he can incorperate this charge into his flts!!!!!
  • Mutineer
    That's a fucking disgrace... ...a quid's nowhere near enough - charge the smelly bastards £5.
  • qwertyuiop
    Just add the increase to the cigarette tax. Increase the smokers tax until they're penniless and are forced to quit and stop dying of lung cancer. How is that a bad thing? Helps get the country out of debt too!
  • Captain C.
    Potato chip sandwiches. Num. Num.
  • Emily
    How would it help the country get out of debt? The amount of money that the government gets from tax outweighs what it costs NHS- we pay NI for that anyway And no it isn't like making food / drink more expensive at the airport, because the cigarettes themselves - obviously not the duty free bits- are more expensive in airports. Geez.
  • John P.
    Hahaha Just gone through this thread and played "spot the smoker" Pay up or don't smoke, you filthy bastards Simples
  • PC P.
    ..but then the smoke rooms will make the smelly bastards smell even more when they get onto the plane. The next step is to have a special smelly section on the aeroplane so they can sit and enjoy each others stink (without lighting up), without bothering non-smokers. Outside seats would be best!
  • Hardofthinking
    I pay six quid a pack to poison my lungs. You hypocrites pay six quid a gallon to poison everyone's lungs. Step out of your glass houses and go sit in your garage with the engine running for an hour.....
  • Frank
    I very often travel to the far east with my wife, i remember one time sitting next to someone who stunk of stale tobacco which is not nice when you have to sit next to someone for 9 hours and its no fun when your trying to eat your dinner, if ever this happens to me again im gonna make sure i use the toilet on board and not wipe my backside, smelly f**kers.
  • Annie, p.
    This is playground bullying of smokers. My doctor advised me to smoke to keep me calm in a crisis. Thank goodness I listened to him. Two years ago after my beloved husband died after 56years of marriage my cigarettes again helped me through a really tough time . Now on a pension I find that this government has made no allowance for the cost of cigs to us pensioners. We were the smokers during the last war when practically everyone smoked, doctors, dentists, ministers,judges et all and no-one complained until we started being ruled and bullied by nasty do-gooders from outside our realm. I for one will not submit to this nazi style dictate. I'll keep on puffing 'till my last breath and hope it will be soon as I'm sick of the lot of you hypocrites.
  • WTF
  • charitynjw
    Well said you, Annie! I might not necessarily agree with the subject matter, but I certainly like your style! Don't get pushed around by self-opinionated prats who are legends only in their own minds, & haven't even got enough brain power to control their own farts!! Vote for Annie - this beleaguered country needs more like her!!

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