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Quitting smokin

Smoking in Adelaide: Everything You Need to Know

Smoking in Adelaide isn’t simple. In our city, smokers must abide by several laws and regulations if they don’t want trouble. 

If you want to know everything about Adelaide’s smoking rules and regulations, you’re in the right place. Our team has done in-depth research concerning the city’s key smoking laws everyone must abide by.

Is smoking allowed in Adelaide?

Smoking is not entirely prohibited in Adelaide, but there are areas and events where it’s not allowed. 

Areas shared by the public like offices and indoor restaurants are some of the common spots in Adelaide where you should never use tobacco products.

Benefits of a Smoke-Free Environment

Benefits of a Smoke-Free Environment

There are reasons why smoking is controlled in Adelaide. One of the primary objectives of why our city has smoke-free zones is for the protection of the public’s health. 

Tobacco products, mainly cigarettes, contain harmful chemicals like nicotine and hydrogen cyanide. 

According to the doctors of the Department of Health and Aged Care, once these substances enter the human body, they can easily cause fatal diseases like cancer and lung diabetes. 


This is scary since the harmful smoke produced by cigarettes can be easily inhaled by other people through secondhand smoke. And more bad news: secondhand smoke is deadlier.

The health department warns that individuals who always inhale secondhand smoke have a 25% to 30% risk of developing dangerous diseases. And sadly, for every 8 smoking-related fatalities, 1 is a passive smoker.


The Public Health Research and Practice journal also believes smoke-free environments help end smoking habits. 

They think that areas, where smoking is banned, create a positive psychological effect on smokers and those who already quit.

Lastly, smoke-free zones help the environment too by reducing the amount of pollution and waste caused by cigarettes. The CDC states that every year, cigarettes and other tobacco products add metric tons of gaseous pollutants and 2 million tons of waste.

Laws and Regulations about Smoking in Adelaide

Laws and Regulations about Smoking in Adelaide

The Tobacco and E-Cigarette Products Act 1997 governs the sale, production, marketing, and use of tobacco and e-cigarette products in Adelaide and South Australia. According to the Act, the following are considered tobacco products:

  • Cigarettes
  • Electronic cigarettes
  • Vapes
  • Cigars
  • Chewed tobacco
  • Pipe tobacco
  • Snuff
  • Shisha tobacco
  • All products with tobacco
  • All products manufactured for smoking (including ones without tobacco)

Here are the important rules and regulations found in the Tobacco and E-Cigarette Products Act 1997.

Tobacco products shouldn’t be sold to minors (individuals below 18 years old).The seller will pay an expiation fee amounting to $1,200. 
The business owner will also be charged a hefty sum of $20,000 (first offense) and $40,000 (second and subsequent offenses).
Retailers of tobacco products must present a Retail Tobacco Merchant License.
-The license must be displayed in a spot where it can easily be seen. 
-One legitimate copy of the license should be displayed in every outlet.
If this license isn’t presented or displayed properly, the retailer will be charged $160 (expiation fee) to $1,250 (maximum penalty).
Smoking in a smoke-free zone is strictly prohibited.The occupier of the smoke-free zone will pay a maximum amount of $2,500. The smoker, on the one hand, has to pay a maximum fee of $750. 

Adelaide’s Smoke-Free Zones

Adelaide’s Smoke-Free Zones

We’re going to list and elaborately define the places in Adelaide where smoking is completely prohibited. 

Our team will also include the fees and punishment you might incur if you smoke in these areas.

Outdoor Dining Areas

Outdoor Dining Areas

Outdoor dining areas under the Tobacco and E-Cigarette Products Act 1997 are defined as open, publicly accessible locations with furniture utilized for public dining (chairs, tables, etc.). According to the Act, these smoke-free zones usually include the following:

  • Pubs
  • Clubs
  • Restaurants
  • Cafes
  • Temporary event eateries
  • Fast-food dining areas

The Act states that as long as there’s food being served or sold in these outdoor dining areas, smoking isn’t allowed. All types of tobacco products are included in this prohibition.

The proprietor of the venue must also display a no-smoking sign. The sign should be placed in a spot where it can easily be seen.

But if someone still smokes in an outdoor dining area, the offender will be fined $750. The owner of the business or the venue will have to pay $2,500, too.

Enclosed Zones, Public Areas, and Shared Spaces

Enclosed Zones, Public Areas, and Shared Spaces

According to the Act, if the combined surface area of the ceiling and the walls of a zone exceeds 70% of the total ceiling/wall space, the area is considered an enclosed zone. This remains true even if the area is just partially enclosed. 

Zones with decorations that restrict airflow are considered enclosed too, and by extension, smoke-free places as well. Examples of decors that can make a spot “enclosed” include umbrellas, sail shades, and lattices. 


The Act defines public spaces as open or close areas where the general public shop do daily activities such as working and paying bills. Here are some examples of public areas according to the Act:

  • Malls
  • Eateries
  • Casinos
  • Sports and recreation zones
  • Enclosed workspaces
  • Medical centers

Lastly, shared areas are portions of residential establishments that are accessed and used by all tenants. The Act says that the areas below should be smoke-free 24/7.

  • Stairwells (enclosed)
  • Car parks
  • Corridors
  • Common rooms
  • Kitchens
  • Laundry areas
  • Foyers

Smoking outside of these establishments is not prohibited as long as the owners don’t impose their own anti-smoking policies. Smoking in private dwellings is allowed, too, as long as there’s no health worker performing his or her duties on the premises. 

A clear no-smoking sign must be displayed in all these areas for the Act to take effect. However, if someone disregards the sign, he or she will be fined $750 while the occupier must pay $1,200.



The Act strictly states that children’s playgrounds enclosed by a fence should be 100% smoke-free too. Additionally, smoking 10 meters away from a children’s playground is prohibited.

According to the Act, these playgrounds should remain smoke-free even if there are no children around:

  • Parks playgrounds
  • School playgrounds
  • Hotel playgrounds
  • Sports playgrounds
  • Business playgrounds
  • Restaurant playgrounds

BMX tracks aren’t included in this smoking prohibition. Exercise zones located outdoors are not covered by the Act too, as long as it doesn’t share space with a children’s playground. 

Offenders will be charged an expiation fee of $105 to $750.

Public Transport Waiting Areas

Public Transport Waiting Areas

Public transport waiting areas, according to the Act, are sheltered zones where passengers are dropped off or picked up by all types of vehicles. 

The Act explains that covered areas have a higher risk of being exposed to tobacco compared to uncovered ones.

Public transport waiting areas where smoking isn’t allowed include the following.

  • Bus stops
  • Taxi zones
  • Tram shelters
  • Train stations

Please keep in mind that the cover doesn’t have to be a direct part of the said areas. For clarification, a taxi zone covered by another building should remain smoke-free. 

One may smoke near these areas, though, if he or she isn’t standing within the area’s cover. No specific distance is required by the Act.

The fine for breaking this smoking prohibition ranges from $105 to $750.

Inside Motor Vehicles with Children

Inside Motor Vehicles with Children

Children exposed to secondhand smoke are greatly at risk of acquiring dangerous diseases. In South Australia, the common diseases contracted by children exposed to passive smoke include asthma and sudden infant death syndrome. 

According to the Act, motor vehicles boarded by children below 16 years of age should be smoke-free all the time. 


This prohibition can’t be disregarded even if the windows of the motor vehicle are down. 

Moreover, both moving and stationary vehicles are encompassed by this law. 

Every adult inside the vehicle will also be tagged as an offender even if only one is caught smoking.

Violators will be issued an expiation fee that ranges from $105 to $750.

How to Make an Outdoor Area or Event Smoke-Free

How to Make an Outdoor Area or Event Smoke-Free

Declaring an area a smoke-free zone is legal according to Sections 51 and 52 of the Act. As long as the area is part of the local government and its incorporated bodies, the no-smoking policy you’re planning to declare can be legally imposed. 

Here are some things you must have and know first before your file a request.

First, groups or people who are eligible to file for applications include the following.

  • Local councils
  • Groups handling events like festivals, concerts, etc.
  • General public (must be done through the local council)

Second, you can apply to two types of events and areas: short-term and long-term. 

The Minister of Health and Wellbeing is in charge of examining and approving applications for short-term events and areas. An application should be submitted a minimum of 8 weeks before the event begins.

Short-term events and areas you can declare as smoke-free include:

  • Carnivals
  • Sports arenas
  • Pageants
  • Festivals
  • Concerts
  • Fetes

The anti-smoking regulation can declare long-term events and areas non-smoking zones. The event organizer or owner of the establishment should apply at least 6 months before the event’s official launch.

Here are the requirements:

  • The duration for which the no-smoking policy will take effect
  • A detailed map or description of the area to be declared smoke-free
  • Proof of discussions done with stakeholders, community organizations, and industry groups directly affected by the event
  • Documentation outlining any further effects the declaration may have on the area as well as how those effects will be handled
  • Enforcement plan
  • A communication strategy outlining how the public will be informed of the non-smoking status of the area (signage placement and strategies of enforcement)
  • Evaluation plan

If you got everything you need, you may contact phone the Tobacco Control Unit at (08) 7425 5000. You may also email the unit’s officers at [email protected]

FAQs about Smoking in Adelaide

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