Save Money While You Vape
Are you saving money vaping? One of the first things you realize when you really get into vaping is that all the “savings” you heard about isn’t exactly true… at first anyway. There is the experimentation of various brands, flavors of eLiquid or prefilled cartomizers, buying batteries, atomizers, clearomizers, tanks, and on and on and on it goes… and when the vapor finally clears you realize that you’ve spent two or three times as much on getting up to speed buying what you need to stay off tobacco and become a fully realized Vaper. And you know, that’s okay. It is to be expected. This discovery phase is not only important; it’s fun. So you went overboard, big deal. As long as you don’t stay overboard you’re not going to drown. (I am cooking with the metaphors today!)
After The Discovery Phase
Once you find what works for you there is no doubt that you can save money; but that requires a lot of sacrifice. I mean, while you were in the discovery phase you were most likely checking out many different eLiquids, and plenty of hardware, so are you likely to stop completely? Probably not.
The exploration is part of the fun of vaping but no matter how wealthy you are there comes a point when it can get out of control and you begin drowning in eJuice and finding that you have eGo batteries all over the house; under the sofa cushions, under the bed, maybe even a couple stashed in the refrigerator by accident. That being the case, in this Guide to Vaping we’re going to discuss a few of ways to minimize the financial damage that can come from overindulging.
Branding Is Seldom A Good Thing
The first, and probably the most significant way to save money is understanding a few facts about the e-cigarette industry that few companies want you to know.
China is King
Most people, but not all people*, buy e-cigarette hardware made in China. And why not? China is where the Innokin iTaste line comes from, where all the JoyeTech eGo’s and Kanger EVOD’s and ProTanks are made. These are all good products but where we can go wrong when we buy them is when we buy them from companies that stamp their brand/logo on them and mark it up 50% or more.
You need to ask yourself is a Kanger T3 worth $3 more if it has the logo of a large retailer on it, or if you might be better off buying it from a vendor like MyVaporStore or Koko Vapes. New Vapers have a tendency to believe that because there is a logo of a large retailer on the box, or on the clearomizer itself (or whatever it is) that it is somehow better. It’s not. It is the very same, exact product. The only difference is that the retailer paid to have their logo printed on it.
A vendor like MyVaporStore or Koko Vapes doesn’t bother with branding Innokin, JoyeTech, or Kanger products, they just buy as many as they can afford in order to get the lowest price they can and then turn around and put it on their website or retail store shelf and sell it as low as they can. Before you waste money needlessly paying for the same product sold elsewhere at lower price find out how much you’re paying for the brand logo on the product. Even if it’s a dollar more it’s a dollar too much.
Just about every company we’ve reviewed in Spinfuel offers special deals, sampler bottles, and ‘packs’ that can save you money. Use them whenever you can. Resist the urge to spring for a 30ML bottle of an eLiquid flavor you’ve never tried before. Instead, opt for a sampler bottle, or a 10ML or 15ML bottle first. If you like it you can reorder it in the largest size possible, and then save even more.
Here’s the thing; yes, when you buy a 5ML sampler bottle, or even a 10ML or 15ML bottle the price per ML goes up, sometimes by quite a bit. That said, it is cheaper in the long run because… well, because of this:
- Most eLiquids you try will not become favorites
- Most eLiquid you buy you won’t like for long
- Exotic flavors do not make good all-day vapes
- Most non all-day vape flavors go to waste
That’s the truth. So buy the smallest bottle you can when you first try a new flavor, it will save you a lot of money over a short amount of time. The vast majority of eLiquid vendors understand these things and that’s why they offer sampler bottles in the first place. In addition, no eLiquid vendor wants you to be unhappy with them so if you continue to buy 30ML bottles in the hope that you’ll enjoy it enough to use the whole bottle up in 3 or 4 weeks (max) you’ll wind up unhappy with the vendor. Knowing what you like by way of sampling the flavor first builds a better relationship with the brand of eLiquid, saves you money, and makes you a happy customer. It’s a win-win for everyone.
Most new Vapers start off with e-cigarettes that look like regular cigarettes. It’s the reason why NJOY sells so many of their disposables for $7.99 a pop. Never mind that I that don’t know a single soul who has vaped an NJOY and gotten more than 25 puffs from it. Smoker’s keep trying them because they look a lot like what they already know; a tobacco cigarette.
If you’ve never purchased a Starter Kit from any brand the worst thing you can do is buy their most expensive kit. At the same time, never assume that you can buy one of their disposables and expect the rechargeable version to taste the same. 95% of the time they don’t taste anything like the eLiquids in the prefilled cartomizers. You should always buy a starter kit over a disposable, but you should buy the smallest, cheapest kit they offer. If you decide you like them then you can either buy a larger starter kit or add to it a la carte. But there are other things to consider as well.
- Know the threading on their batteries ahead of time. 510? 808? Find out.
- Never believe for a minute that you are stuck using their prefilled cartomizers. Every single brand uses one of 3 threading, 510, 808, or 901. There are dozens of other prefilled cartomizers that will fit the batteries. If you don’t like the cartomizers that came with the kit, don’t worry about it, there are others.
- Every starter kit battery can use blank cartomizers that you can fill with any eLiquid you want.
- Spending more money for a starter kit does not mean getting a better starter kit. Good companies, like Triple 7 or Halo Cigs, will sell their Starter Kits for a fair market price because they expect return customers. Expensive starter kits are ‘usually’ sold because the brand knows this is the only time you’ll spend money with them.
- If a brand offers an automatic shipping option, run! They are never wise and the sole reason they exist is to lock you into their cartomizers. Again, you are never stuck using one brand of prefilled cartomizers no matter what battery you’re using.
- Never believe a Free Trial offer, and always read the Terms and Conditions of EVERY e-cigarette brand.
- The truth about cig-a-like batteries is this: They last about 6-8 months. After that they will not hold 100% charges and will not last nearly as long as they did when they were new. Never pay more than $14.95 for a cig-a-like battery. $12.95 is the sweet spot.
- Never pay more than $11 for a 5-pack of prefilled cartomizers.
- Never believe the “1 cartomizer lasts 2 packs of traditional cigarettes”. That’s nonsense. 1 Cartomizer will last 10-12 traditional cigarettes, sometimes less.
Vaping can save you money over smoking, but in order to do that you need to know how and what to purchase. More than likely you’ll wind up spending about the same (though saving tens of thousands of dollars in healthcare costs and added years to your life), but you’ll also enjoy the variety a lot more than with your Marlboros or Winston’s.
Most Vapers will want to explore, try new eLiquids, new batteries, and a million other things, and that’s a good thing. You’ll never be bored with vaping, and you don’t have to concern yourself with health issues. But, there is no need to leave money on the table while enjoying your newfound pleasure. You can still enjoy all the great things about vaping and save money. These ‘suggestions’ above are only a few ways to make sure you’re spending wisely.
We would love to hear from you in the comments below. Share with other readers your ways of saving money. Offer your own tips (I’m sure I missed many), so that others can enjoy vaping even more.
* Many people, myself included, spend a great deal on vaping hardware and eLiquids. I consider vaping a serious hobby, so in addition to all the good products from China I have begun expanding my hardware choices with European brands, and of course ProVape’s ProVari (made in the USA) and Z-Atty RBA. I’ve discovered a lot of great European companies from one of our new advertisers, VapeRev. For Vaping Enthusiasts a company like VapeRev can open your eyes to many of the exquisitely detailed and handcrafted mods and RBA’s coming from Europe.