What to Expect & Prepare for Your First Vape Shop Visit

What to Expect & Prepare for Your First Vape Shop Visit

Plus, some tips on how to make your vape shop visit perfect.

24 October 2022 | Hannah Rubery

What to Expect & Prepare for Your First Vape Shop Visit (Image)

We understand how daunting it can feel to walk into a vape shop for the first time. Many of them are busy with vapers puffing clouds that obscure the view, and others may feel equally as intimidating when quiet. Not to mention the sheer number of products inside can easily overwhelm a new person to the vaping scene.

But it’s important to remember that those behind the counters at a vape shop are there because they have a passion for all things vaping. And it’s something they want to share with you. So, try not to feel too daunted by that door and remember the reason why you came in the first place – for help in quitting smoking.

Preparing to take the first step – shop choice

It’s quite likely in your town you have at least one vape store, and if you venture out into a large town or city, there are going to be a fair few. You might notice that some seem a little different from the rest.

For one, there may be a ‘specialty’ shop, the sort that caters to high-end vapers looking to get creative with their mod kits. Also known as enthusiast vapers, these sorts of stores are more for the advanced and adventurous vaper.

There are also more mid-tier stores that have a slightly smaller range of starter kits and equipment, perfect for those already in-the-know with much of the vaping jargon.

And then you have the go-to stores for beginners to vaping. Franchise stores are beginner-friendly environments that are keen to help you get on your quit-smoking journey. By finding your go-to store, you’re more likely to keep up with your quitting journey so don’t be afraid to keep looking.

Questions to ask your shop assistants

Let them know about you

When talking to a vape shop assistant it’s important that they get to know you. Now we don’t mean on a deeply personal level, but the basics about your smoking habits are a good place to start. By understanding how much you smoke a day the assistant will be able to offer tailor-made suggestions for you. If you’ve already done some research on what you’re looking for, let them know and they can either help you find it or something similar.

Nicotine strength

When the shop assistant knows how much you smoke, they can offer you their expertise on what nicotine strength you should be using. It’s important when using vaping to quit cigarettes, that you satisfy the nicotine cravings otherwise you may be tempted to go back to smoking. As a general rule of thumb, heavy smokers are likely to be suggested 20mg E-Liquids, but depending on your smoking habits, a lower strength may be suggested.

E-Liquid types

Not only is there nicotine strength to think about, but nicotine type. Freebase nicotine and Nicotine Salts are the most common in the UK, both with their own pros and cons. For someone new to vaping, it’s understandable you won’t know where to begin with it. They should be able to advise which one will work best for you, often depending on your nicotine strength suggestion.

For example, those suggested to use 20mg are likely to be suggested Nicotine Salts as they’re smoother and stronger than Freebase E-Liquids – perfect for smokers looking to quit.

Not to mention the flavours! There is such a wide array of flavours from fruit to mint, menthol to dessert and more. Most get easily overwhelmed by the variety, but a shop assistant will be great for offering suggestions at where to start.

Taste test before you buy

In terms of the flavours, most vape stores will also offer a tasting station. You may need to ask about it, but generally, it’s widely accepted to taste-test flavours. Some stores even have dedicated areas with kits set up ready for you to try. Tastes are subjective and the nuances of flavours in the vaping market lead to two strawberry flavours tasting different from one another.

4 top tips for getting the most out of your first visit

1. Have an idea in mind of what you want

No one is expecting you to know and remember every single vape kit and E-Liquid but researching online can help you when it comes to making a final decision. Simple searches like “recommended kits for new vapers” or “best vape kit/E-Liquid” can give you some ideas. You can then take these ideas into the store with you which will help a shop assistant understand what you are looking for. Reading a few articles on the basics of vaping can definitely help too.

2. Research prices before visiting

Prices online may vary from that in-store, mainly due to prices needing to be inflated in-store due to extra costs. However, the pros of going in-store to purchase means you save on postage and get your products then and there. But browsing pricing online should give you a rough idea of how much you will be looking to spend.

3. Ask for advice

Most staff at vape stores won’t be vaping experts, but they will have at least enough knowledge to help you with the most important parts of your visit. Suggesting suitable products and helping you navigate the store and products inside. Don’t be afraid to ask, in this case, it’s much better for you to talk to a salesperson!

4. Don’t be afraid to go elsewhere

When you visit your local vape store and it doesn’t feel comfortable then don’t let it dissuade you. If you don’t like the atmosphere, the prices, or the product selection (or even the staff), then it’s perfectly fine to leave and try another vape shop.

There is always an alternative and because there are so many, there is a lot of choice and variety in the styles of the owners and workers. Keep looking until you find what’s best for you or even choose to shop online if all else fails.

Don’t feel pressured into buying something you don’t want, even if you can’t get answers from the sales staff, the internet has many vaping experts who are often answering queries online.

Hopefully, this helps you feel a bit more prepared for your first journey to the vape shop. Let us know in the comments what your first vape shop experience was like.