With the federal government announcing during last year’s budget speech that it will increase tobacco excise by 12.5% over the next four years, the already sky high prices that Australian smokers have to pay are set to soar even higher. A look back over the last 20 years is a painful exercise for anybody that smokes, with average prices rising a massive 343% during that time. Fully 64% of this rise has come in the last 5 years, due to hefty tax increases every year since 2012, aimed at discouraging existing smokers from continuing their habit and potential smokers from taking up the habit in the first place.
In between 1999 and 2010, tobacco excise was only increased in line with inflation but this all changed in April 2010, when the government announced a single increase of 25%. 2013 and 2014 also saw increases in double figures, and the misery looks set to continue if the government follows through with its promise, and there is little reason to doubt that it will do. A smoker who gets through a pack of Marlboro a day is paying $175 a week for his or her habit in Australia today and will be paying a whopping $280 by 2020, or $40 a pack, and that’s not including inflation! Even if you have never considered quitting before, and let’s face it, most smokers think about it every day, these figures are sure to give you pause for thought. If you were already planning to stop at some point in the future, that point may have just got a lot nearer.
It’s Not Just Your Wallet That Pays the Price
Smoking tobacco products doesn’t just hurt your wallet of course, it causes untold damage to your health as well. When you consider that you could be spending upwards of $750 a month for the dubious pleasure of slowly suffocating yourself to death, hazy thoughts of stopping may start to come sharply into focus. However, many smokers believe they obtain genuine pleasure from their habit and find it very difficult to quit so price rises and health scares are sometimes still not enough to tip them over the edge into a concerted effort to stop for good.
So What Can You Can Do?
Smokers who simply cannot picture their life without cigarettes may feel that the only alternative to paying the ever increasing cost of traditional tobacco products is to buy them on the black market but this is not really a very appealing solution for otherwise law abiding citizens. If you are looking for a substitute that will save you a lot of money and still provide you with the satisfaction you derive from normal cigarettes, vaping is one solution definitely worth considering. With 10 ml bottles of tobacco flavoured e-liquids that are the equivalent of 150 cigarettes costing just $9.80, and e-cig starter kits available for as little as $37.50, you stand to save a small fortune by making the switch.