Buying a New Vape in Australia: Definitive Guide

Buying a New Vape in Australia: Definitive Guide


When you make the choice to switch from smoking to vaping, you’ll have a pretty difficult decision on your hands when it comes to buying your first piece of vaping hardware. When you were a smoker, you never really had to make a difficult buying decision because all cigarettes are fundamentally the same and work in the same way. The world of vaping hardware, however, is a bit more challenging for newcomers because vaping devices can differ from one another in fairly profound ways. They can differ so much, in fact, that choosing the wrong device can result in you not enjoying your vaping experience at all.

In this article, we’re going to walk you through the process of choosing your first piece of vaping hardware. First, though, we’re going to explain one of the peculiarities of vaping in Australia. 

Why Don’t Australian Vape Shops Sell E-Liquid With Nicotine?

The first thing you need to know about vaping in Australia is that you won’t find e-liquid with nicotine – or e-cigarette starter kits including cartridges with nicotine – in this country. That’s because our nation’s laws classify nicotine as a controlled substance. To buy e-liquid with nicotine, therefore, you need to obtain a doctor’s prescription. From there, you have two options: You can buy e-liquid from a compounding pharmacy, or you can import it from abroad. Learn more about Australia’s vaping laws at the website for the Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association. 

Note that the Australian government is currently working to ban all private imports of e-liquid with nicotine – even for people who have the appropriate prescriptions. If you disagree with that potential loss of freedom, now is the time to let your voice be heard.

If you don’t want to go through the legal rigamarole necessary to obtain e-liquid with nicotine, here’s the good news: You can buy nicotine-free e-liquid from any vape shop in Australia – and many Australian vapers have found that vaping can be just as enjoyable without nicotine as it is with nicotine. We encourage you to try nicotine-free vape juice if you don’t want to go through the hassle of obtaining a prescription.

With that out of the way, it’s time to discuss the key difference between vaping devices – and why it’s so important to choose the right type for your needs.

Choosing a Vaping Device for Your Inhaling Style

The main reason why choosing the right vaping device is so important is because devices and tanks are designed for two different inhaling styles. A vaping device designed for beginners is generally optimized for a mouth-to-lung (MTL) inhaling style, which is the way that you probably inhale if you’re a smoker. Devices for more experienced vapers, however, typically produce much larger vapour clouds. Since it’s impossible to hold a large vapour cloud in your mouth, expert-oriented devices usually have very open airflow characteristics and are designed for direct inhalation into the lungs. 

Direct-lung (DTL) inhalation has its benefits. In addition to the much larger cloud production, inhaling directly to the lungs also means that you’ll enjoy much bolder flavours because you’ll be using a higher volume of e-liquid. If you want to experience the biggest flavours that vaping can offer – especially if you’re going to be using e-liquid without nicotine – you might enjoy a vaping device designed for direct-to-lung inhaling. Most new vapers, however, will prefer devices designed for the familiar mouth-to-lung inhaling style.

You can tell a vaping device’s intended inhaling style simply by looking at its mouthpiece. If the mouthpiece is around the samesize as the filter of a cigarette, the device has slightly restrictive airflow and is designed for mouth-to-lung inhaling. If the mouthpiece is wide, the device is designed for direct-to-lung inhaling.

Next, let’s examine the most popular types of devices that you’llencounter when you shop for a new vape in Australia.

Pod Vaping Systems: Our Pick for New Vapers

A pod system is a vaping device that stores its e-liquid in a removable plastic pod. Pod systems are some of the smallest refillable vaping devices on the market, with some of them being barely larger than USB thumb drives. In the past, cigalikes – vaping devices designed to look like tobacco cigarettes – were the most popular devices among new vapers. You can still find cigalikes at some retailers today, and we’ll discuss those in a moment. The technology behind pod systems, however, is much newer and more reliable. If you’re new to vaping, we strongly recommend buying a pod system unless you absolutely require a vaping device that looks like a tobacco cigarette.

In a pod system, the pod is a removable and disposable component. You’ll fill the pod by removing the pod from the device and pulling a silicone plug to expose the pod’s filling hole. You’ll then fill the pod and put it back into the device. When the pod’s flavour quality begins to decrease, it’s time to replace the pod. You can usually refill a pod several times before the flavour changes.

A final benefit of pod systems is that they’re extremely simple to use and often lack controls of any type. With most pod systems, you simply inhale to generate vapour – just as if you were smoking a cigarette. The fact that pod systems are so user friendly is a major part of why we recommend them for new vapers. 

To use a pod system, all that you need to do is:

• Keep the battery charged
• Keep the pod filled
• Replace the pod when necessary

Who Should Buy a Pod Vaping System?

You should buy a pod system if you are new to vaping and want a device that’s as easy to use as possible but doesn’t limit you in terms of the e-liquid that you can use. When you use a vaping device with pre-filled pods or cartridges – we’ll discuss those later – you can only use a small handful of different flavours. Filling your own vaping device does require a little extra effort in comparison, but the payoff is that you can use any of the many hundreds of different e-liquid flavours on the market today.

If you plan to go through the legal hoops necessary to buy e-liquid with nicotine, you should also know that pod systems can be great for smokers who want to quit because they’re designed to work well with nicotine salt e-liquid. Nicotine salt e-liquid typically has a high concentration of nicotine and delivers almost as much nicotine per puff as a cigarette. Smokers generally find nicotine salt e-liquid very satisfying.

Vape Pens: Perfect Step-Up Products for Intermediate Vapers

A vape pen is the intermediate step between the small mouth-to-lung devices that beginning vapers use and the larger direct-to-lung devices marketed to experienced vapers. You can find vape pens designed for both inhaling styles, in fact. As we described above, you can tell a device’s intended inhaling style by looking at the mouthpiece.

Vape pens almost always come with their own refillable glass tanks. They differ from pod systems in that way because, while the entire pod in a pod system is disposable, the tank in a vape pen is a permanent or semi-permanent component. The disposable component is the atomizer coil at the heart of the tank. 

Compared to using a pod system, using a vape pen with a glass tank provides three benefits.

• A vape pen gives you better vapour production.
• Many people find that storing e-liquid in glass rather than plastic produces a better flavour.
• Atomizer coils for a vape pen often cost less than new pods for a pod system.

If you use e-liquid with nicotine, you should take note of the fact that vape pens usually produce more vapour per puff than pod systems because you will most likely need to lower the nicotine strength of your e-liquid when switching from a pod system to a vape pen.

Although vape pens offer superior performance compared to pod systems, they remain fairly simple to use. A vape pen will include a compatible tank, so there’s no need to shop around and determine which tank will work best with a given vape pen. Although some vape pens have removable tanks, you’ll usually have the best experience with the included tank because vape pens usually don’t allow you to adjust their output wattage. 

A vape pen usually has very simple controls. You’ll use a single button to vape and to lock or unlock the device.

Who Should Buy a Vape Pen?

You should buy a vape pen if you’re looking for an upgrade from your first vaping device in terms of vapor production and battery life but aren’t interested in doing all of the work that comes along with owning a full-fledged mod. A mod often has an onboard menu system, so you’ll need to learn how to use it. A mod may use removable batteries, so you’ll need to learn how to handle lithium-ion cells safely. Vape pens usually lack those features, so they give you increased performance without increased effort.

Mods: High-End Devices for Expert Vapers

Vape mods are the flagship devices of the vaping world. A power-regulated vape mod uses industry-standard threading for its tank and has fully adjustable wattage, so it’ll give you a great experience with any tank or atomizer on the market. A vape mod may have a removable battery, so you can use your device with one battery while charging another battery. Some mods even support multiple batteries, allowing you to enjoy incredibly long battery life.

A mod gives you the absolute best that the world of vaping has to offer, including the best battery life, the widest power range, and the best compatibility with third-party tanks, atomizers and other accessories. A mod has everything you want, in other words, if you want to vape like a pro.

Although vape mods can offer incredible flavour and vapour production, there’s a trade-off in that using a mod involves a little more effort than other types of vaping devices. A mod usually has a graphical or text display and a menu system that you can manipulate by pressing the mod’s buttons. If you want to have the best possible experience with the mod, you’ll need to learn how to use the menu system – although if you’re the type who likes to “set it and forget it,” you may only need to do that once. In addition, many vape mods have removable batteries. If you’re going to use lithium-ion cells, you need to learn how to handle them safely.

The final thing you need to know about using a vape mod is that, if a mod includes a tank, it’ll always be a tank designed for direct-to-lung inhaling. If you prefer the mouth-to-lung inhaling style, you’ll need to buy a separate tank to go with your mod. 

Who Should Buy a Vape Box Mod?

You should buy a vape mod If you want to experience the best battery life, vapour production and flavour quality that the world of vaping has to offer and don’t mind putting forth the extra effort necessary to learn how to use and maintain a high-end piece of consumer electronics. High-end mods usually aren’t ideal for new vapers, but don’t let that stop you from trying a mod if you love gadgets. 

Other Types of Vaping Devices

In this article, we’ve described the three types of vaping devices that are most popular in Australia and that you’re most likely to want, regardless of whether you’re a new or experienced vaper. There are a few other types of devices, though, that appeal to certain niches within the vaping community. We’ll describe those next.

Cigalikes and Pre-Filled Pod Systems

A cigalike is a vaping device that’s designed to look like a tobacco cigarette. Its e-liquid is stored in disposable cartridges that you screw on and then throw away when they’re empty. You can also find small pod-based vaping devices with pre-filled pods that work in much the same way, except that the pods aren’t designed for refilling like in the refillable pod systems that we described above. Cigalikes and pre-filled pod systems are not particularly popular in Australia because the ones that are legal to sell here do not contain nicotine and because they are very limited in their flavour selection compared to vaping devices that you can fill yourself.

Disposable E-Cigarettes

A disposable e-cigarette is a vaping device that’s charged, filled with e-liquid and ready to use out of the box. It’s only designed to work for about as long as a pack of cigarettes would last, though, after which time it’s necessary to dispose of it and begin using a new disposable e-cigarette. Like cigalikes, disposable e-cigarettes aren’t particularly common in Australia due to the unavailability of nicotine and the poor flavour selection compared to refillable devices.

Mechanical Mods

Mechanical mods are vaping devices for experts only. The difference between a standard vape mod and a mechanical modis that a mechanical mod has no electronic components. A standard mod has an integrated circuit and built-in firmware that monitors your vaping parameters and can alert you if a fault occurs. A standard vape mod, for instance, can alert you if there’s a short circuit or the device’s internal temperature is too high. Since a mechanical mod has no electronic components, it can’t tell you if your equipment has a problem or if you’re doing something wrong. If you use a mechanical mod, you’re responsible for your own safety. We don’t recommend using a mechanical mod if you aren’t completely comfortable with that.

Squonk Mods

Squonk mods are some of the most advanced vaping devices presently on the market, and they’re designed to improve the vaping experience for people who use rebuildable atomizers and build their own vaping coils. The most common type of rebuildable atomizer is the rebuildable dripping atomizer (RDA). When you use an RDA, you keep your coil wet by dripping e-liquid directly down the atomizer’s mouthpiece. That’s an inconvenient way to vape because you need to bring a bottle of e-liquid everywhere you go.

A squonk mod solves that problem with an internal e-liquid bottle placed under the atomizer. Squeezing the bottle sends e-liquid up through a tube, wetting the atomizer from the bottom. The bottle in a squonk mod typically holds several millilitres of e-liquid, making this type of device a very convenient solution for anyone who uses an RDA.

Squonk mods can be either mechanical or regulated. If you’re going to buy a squonk mod, make sure that you buy the appropriate type for your safety needs and experience level.


Final Thoughts

This will always be a personal choice. Your budget and experience level will be the ultimate deciding factor in what you should use. But as shallow as it sounds, you should really take into consideration the look and size of the device. If a big bulky device doesn’t fit in your lifestyle, you can effectively rule out half of your options. And vice versa. If size doesn’t matter, and you’re just looking for the most powerful experience, you can look past all of the pocket-friendly devices and go for the gusto.

This guide will hopefully clear away some confusion around the various styles of vaping devices available in Australia. Remember that any question you have regarding a mod, pod, tank or juice, chances are there are many more who would share the same curiousity. Please let us know and the super friendly team at Ivanna Vape, now at two locations close to Sydney CBD, Redfern and Glebe, are there to assist you on your journey.

Or better still drop your question in the comment section below for us to answer.



Ivanna Vape Pty Ltd

Adult Products In Redfern , New South Wales