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Italy Mulls Outdoor Smoking Ban: Will This Affect Their Tourism?

No Smoking

Countries worldwide have recently been tightening their smoking bans and increasing regulations, with Italy considering doing the same.

Italy’s Health Minister Orazio Schillaci said he would crack down on smoking, including e-cigarettes, by prohibiting their use outside bars, public transport stops, and other open-air areas if pregnant women and minors are present. Roughly 12.4 million Italian adults were smokers last year, the highest number recorded since 2009, and it’s estimated that 43,000 people die in the country yearly for smoke-related reasons. Other Italian ministers have expressed their dissent over this proposal, with some calling it exaggerated, intimidating, or even “typical of an authoritarian and dictatorial communist regime.” Italy had already passed an indoor smoking ban in 2003, meaning the increased rules from this crackdown would further limit smoking areas in the country.

Impact on tourism

There may be concerns about this ban affecting tourism in Italy; travelers looking for a place to smoke without strict regulations may be driven away by new rules making it difficult to smoke in public. Milan banned smoking within ten meters of other people in public places in 2021, including at bus and tram stops, parks and green spaces, sports and recreational grounds, and more. The bans were met with mixed reviews; some believed the new rules wouldn’t deter the “Italian habit of smoking wherever you want” unless there were sanctions. Others noted that it could improve the outdoor experience by preventing smoke from affecting non-smokers. While a country-wide crackdown hasn’t been set in place yet, it may be inferred that tourists may react similarly, with smokers lamenting the regulations and non-smokers appreciating smoke-free environments.



Though it remains to be seen how tourism in Italy may be affected by a nationwide ban, other countries have seen positive results from tighter smoking regulations. Cambodia has expanded its smoke-free hospitality to ensure a safer tourism environment. Smoke-free tourism helps protect hospitality workers, visitors, and the local environment from secondhand smoke, which negatively affects health, and tobacco product waste, which is harmful to the environment. By engaging numerous tourism and hospitality businesses, travelers can enjoy touring the country without smoke and cigarette butts. Spain’s smoke-free beaches have also proved beneficial for tourism. Families traveling to the country value them as a family tourist attraction, allowing more people to visit comfortably. Italy may garner positive perspectives from tourists who want to experience smoke-free travel and environments.

Industry adjustments

With more countries passing and considering smoking bans, the cigarette industry is changing to adapt to the changing landscape. Companies are investing more in reduced-risk products that aren’t as harmful as traditional cigarettes; even tobacco giants such as Phillip Morris International have been increasing their smoke-free offerings to help make way for a smoke-free future. Smoke and tobacco-free nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products are also emerging, equipping users to quit smoking gradually.



NRT products are widely available in stores or online, and obtaining products that suit user needs is more accessible now. Nicotine pouches are rising in popularity; they’re tucked under the upper lip for a discreet, pleasant, smoke-free, convenient travel experience. Online nicotine pouch retailer Prilla showcases how users can quickly purchase pouches of varying flavors and nicotine strengths from top brands in the industry. Fast and free delivery of fresh products ensures the highest quality and best experience. Nicotine patches are also a popular NRT product since they can be stuck onto the skin for up to 24 hours. Patches like NicoDerm CQ are available in drug stores and can be bought over the counter. NRT products can lessen the presence of cigarettes in countries like Italy, which want to regulate smoking further.

Though no clear verdict has been made on Italy’s proposed smoking ban yet, it presents more opportunities for travelers seeking to visit. The country will likely continue tamping down smoking in the coming years, increasing smoke-free environments that benefit tourists and locals.

For more travel news, visit FTN News for the latest insights and updates from all over the world.


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