Skip to main content
Press Release

New figures show youth vaping has plateaued while adult vaping is at an all-time high

14 May 2024

The latest findings [1] from Action on Smoking and Health (ASH’s) annual surveys of young people and adults find that 11% of British adults vape, up from 9% in 2023. However, rates of vaping among 11–17-year-olds have not increased, with 7.6% of young people vaping occasionally or regularly, and 17% of young people having ever vaped, similar to the levels reported in 2023. The new data is being presented at the International E-cigarette Summit in Washington [2] today [Tuesday 14th May].

The most recent wave of ASH’s surveys were conducted by YouGov in Feb/March 2024:

  • Adult survey sample:13,266 GB 18+ adults
  • Youth survey sample: 2,349 11–17-year-olds

Despite the apparent slowing in youth vaping uptake, there is no room for complacency. The proportion of current vaping among 11-17-year-olds is still significantly up from pre-pandemic levels (7.6% in 2024 compared to 4.4% in 2019). Exposure to vape marketing remains high among young people; only 19% say they don’t see vapes being promoted. Young people are most likely to see vapes promoted in shops (55%) followed by online (29%). TikTok is where 11-17-year-olds most frequently report seeing online promotion.

In addition to charting the current levels of vaping among adults and youth, ASH also assesses the level of public understanding about the relative safety of vaping compared to smoking. This year has seen public understanding plunge to an all-time low, with half of all adults (50%) and more than half (58%) of 11-17-year-olds believing vaping is as bad for health, or worse than, smoking.

Hazel Cheeseman, Deputy Chief Executive of Action on Smoking and Health, said:

“The Tobacco and Vapes Bill includes the powers needed to bring youth vaping down and must be enacted swiftly. However, getting adults to quit smoking is important for children’s health too. The evidence has grown that vaping is less harmful than smoking, but public understanding has gone in the other direction.

“It is to be hoped that 2024 can be a turning point and youth vaping will fall, alongside an improvement in public understanding about the role vaping can play in helping the UK’s 6 million smokers stop.”


Notes to the Editor

Action on Smoking and Health is a health charity working to eliminate the harm caused by tobacco use. For more information visit ASH receives funding for its programme of work from Cancer Research UK and the British Heart Foundation.

Contact: Deborah Arnott, Chief Executive, and Hazel Cheeseman, Deputy Chief Executive, are available for media interviews.

[1] The full presentation for the E-cigarette Summit is here:

[2] Full agenda for The E-cigarette Summitt here: