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In my recent trip to Europe for a bit of skiing and sightseeing around Italy and Greece, it became obvious to me, the challenges of being a smoker whilst traveling around various parts of the world. As far as I know, it is now virtually impossible to smoke in airplanes and also in most types of public transit around the world.
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Flying long distance certainly stresses me out just thinking of being cooped up in a plane for more than 7 hours without being able to smoke. Worst still is upon arrival at your transit or final destination and not being able to smoke in the airport somewhere – just anywhere. Certainly, one of the better airports to be stuck in, is Singapore’s Changi airport, if you are a smoker. This smoker-friendly airport has open air smoking lounges sprinkled throughout all it’s terminals!
Totally opposite to this (in my opinion) democratic and respectful attitude to smokers, are all the airports in Australia. None of the Australian airports has any facility for smokers but lots of bars or pubs if you like to get totally drunk – what does that say about Australian airports? It’s okay to get drunk and be a public nuisance but not okay to smoke in a smoking lounge and kill yourself from passive smoking? Such an archaic stance as far as civil liberties are concerned – why penalize smokers if they are not harming anyone else especially if they are in smoking lounges.
Dubai airport is also interesting – there is only one smoking lounge in the whole airport and it’s located in Terminal 1 which can be a fair walk away from some of the Departure Lounges. However, they have many restaurants and pubs throughout the airport which allows you to smoke in them if you are willing to pay for expensive drink or food. What a novel way of increasing revenue for these restaurants and bars! Let’s penalize smokers by getting them to drink or eat at these expensive places. Meanwhile, back at the one and only smoking lounge in Dubai airport, everyone is trying to squeeze into the lounge for a last smoke before embarking – tuff.
Athens airport was a delight! Upon arrival and even before Immigration or Customs, there was a small corner where alighting passengers could have a quick puff. Hopefully, this doesn’t change when the new anti-smoking laws come into effect in Greece. The birthplace of Democracy certainly appreciates the rights of smokers!
In Rome’s Fumicino airport, I also found a few smoking lounges scattered throughout the airport which I was grateful for.
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So, does anyone else know any other airports around the world which are smoker friendly – let us know here and we poor smokers of the world can make sure that we don’t transit or depart or arrive at airports that are not smoking friendly. In summary:
Singapore Changi airport – SF (Smoker Friendly)
Dubai airport – SF if you are willing to pay for expensive food or drinks
Melbourne/Sydney/Brisbane/Adelaide airports – Definitely NOT SF.
Athens airport – SF currently
Rome’s Fumicino airport – SF
Johor Bahru airport, Malaysia – SF