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Americans spend an average of $6.43 for a cigarette pack. Not all US residents, however, pay the same price to satisfy their smoking habits. New Yorkers, for example, pay double the price paid by those in Missouri. Meaning, smoking two packs per week will cost you circa $1,086 a year in the Empire State. Missourians, by contrast, pay only $455. How much money does an average cigarette pack cost in each state? What is the state with the cheapest cigarettes? Why do some states have more expensive tobacco products? Find all the answers in this guide on cigarette prices by state.
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Scroll down to find where you can get the cheapest cigarettes in the USA. Below, we will list each state from least to most expensive. We will also analyze the cigarette tax for every state and provide approximations on the annual price of smoking two packs a week.
Cigarette prices in Arizona earned the state the 36th position on our list of states with the cheapest tobacco. A packet here costs $6.92, resulting in total annual costs of $719.68 for those who smoke 40 cigarettes a week. As for cigarette use, only 14.90% of Arizona adults reported indulging in this habit.
The price of cigarettes in Georgia is $4.92 per pack. This makes Georgia one of the destinations with the cheapest cigarettes by state. This state has respective cigarette excise tax and sales tax of $0.37 and $0.22 per pack. Georgia has a tobacco use rate of 16.3%.
With cigarette prices in Indiana being $5.56 per pack, Indiana ranked 22nd for the cheapest cigarette prices in the US. This price is reasonable and contributes to the annual smoking costs of about $578.24 (for 40 cigarettes per week). Indiana has a tobacco use rate of 19.20%.
Louisiana is one of the states with the cheapest cigarettes in the USA. The Pelican State has a cigarette use rate of 21.9%, and the average price smokers pay here is $5.42 per pack. Smoking 40 cigarettes a week in Louisiana will cost you about $563.68 a year.
The average price of cigarettes in Massachusetts is $9.08, which makes this state a bad destination for those looking for the cheapest cigarettes by state. Those buying two packets every seven days spend $944.32 or so on tobacco products. On the flip side, analysis of the states with the best job market by state shows that Massachusetts ranks first, making it a good destination for both smokers and non-smokers.
Missouri has a cigarette use rate of 19.6% among adults, placing it among the 15 states with the highest rate of smokers. Missourians who smoke two packs a week spend about $455 a year. Residents in this cheapest state to buy cigarettes save double the money than smokers in Alaska, Connecticut, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island.
Tennessee is among the top 10 states with the highest tobacco use rate (19.9%) in the US and the top 10 list of states with the cheapest cigarettes. Cigarette prices in Tennessee show that one pack in the state is $5.10, resulting in average annual smoking costs of $530. This approximate applies only to Tennesseans that smoke two packs weekly.
Cigarettes are the most expensive in Massachusetts and New York. In these states, they cost over $9 per pack. Missourians have the cheapest cigarettes that cost $4.38 on average, according to data on cigarette prices by state.
The prevalence of smoking among rural Americans and Americans of lower socioeconomic status (SES) remains higher than among their urban and higher SES counterparts. Potential factors contributing to these disparities are area-based differences in the retail environment and tobacco control policies. We describe the association between neighborhood demographics and cigarette prices in rural and urban areas. Prices of one pack of Marlboro Reds, Newport menthols, and the cheapest cigarettes in the store were recorded from a stratified random sample of tobacco retailers in urban (N = 104) and rural (N = 109) Ohio in 2016. Associations between prices and census tract demographics (SES and race) were modeled separately in each region, controlling for store type. In the rural region, as the census tract income increased, the price of Marlboro and Newport cigarettes decreased, and the price of the cheapest pack of cigarettes increased. In the urban region, as the census tract income and percentage of White non-Hispanic people increased, the price of Marlboro decreased; there were no associations between census tract characteristics and the price of Newports or the cheapest cigarettes. Results describe a complex association between cigarette brand, prices, and area characteristics, where the cheapest brands of cigarettes can be obtained for the lowest prices in lower SES rural areas. Tobacco control policies that raise the price of cheap cigarettes, particularly minimum price laws, have the potential to reduce SES-related smoking disparities in both rural and urban populations.
Throughout the United States, the price of a pack of cigarettes varies depending on location for a number of reasons with some states charging more taxes and fees than others. Missouri, ranked as the state with the cheapest cigarettes in the country has an average cigarette price of $5.21 per pack. Georgia, ranked second, has an average cigarette price of $5.35 per pack. With a cigarette price averaging at $5.36 per pack, North Carolina ranks third. North Dakota is ranking fourth with an average cigarette price of $5.43 per pack. Tennessee comes in fifth place with an average cigarette price of $5.54 per pack. South Carolina is ranked sixth with an average cigarette price of $5.57 per pack while Mississippi, ranked seventh, has an average cigarette price of $5.64. A cigarette pack costs $5.68 in Wyoming, ranking the state eighth. Idaho, ranked ninth, has an average cigarette price of $5.72. Virginia is the tenth state with the cheapest cigarette price at $5.73 per pack.
Cigarette prices by brand vary significantly in the United States, with some of the most popular brands being Marlboro, Newport, and American Spirit. Generally speaking, Marlboro cigarettes tend to be the most expensive at around $9 per pack in many states. American Spirit cigarettes are less expensive than Marlboro cigarettes and cost around $7 per pack. Newport cigarettes are usually a bit cheaper, typically costing about $6 for a pack across many states. However, there is significant variation by state in these prices; for example, in California, the price of a Marlboro pack can be as high as $10 whereas it is only around $6 in Alabama. Furthermore, taxes also play a role in the differences between cigarette prices by brand and location; while some states have higher sales taxes than others, certain local governments within those states also impose additional taxes on tobacco products that can affect their cost even further.
On November 13, 2015, Gaurav Joseph Jayaseelan, 25, a citizen of India, pled guilty to selling and dispensing and causing the sale and dispensing of a counterfeit tobacco product, cigarettes, the labeling of which bore the trade name of Newport cigarettes, a tobacco product listed with the FDA under Title 21, United States Code, Section 387(e)(i)(1), in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 331(qq)(3) and 333(a)(2), and Title 18, United States Code, Section 2; and trafficking in 53,740 cartons of cigarettes, while knowingly using a counterfeit mark on and in connection with such cigarettes, the use of which was likely to cause confusion, cause mistake, and deceive. The counterfeit marks were false marks identical to and substantially indistinguishable from the marks of the legitimate manufacturer of Newport brand cigarettes, which were in use by and registered to the manufacturer on the principal register of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2320(a) and 2.
Jayaseelan faces maximum statutory sentence of up to three years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and supervised release of up to three years for selling the counterfeit cigarettes. The defendant faces up to ten years in prison, a fine of up to $2,000,000, and a three year term of supervised release, for the trafficking of the cigarette cartons. The defendant is scheduled to be sentenced on January 22, 2016 at 1:15 pm.
Basically, subdivision one of the Statute makes it unlawful to ship cigarettes directly to New York consumers. See N.Y. PUB. HEALTH LAW 1399-ll (1). Subdivision two prohibits the knowing transportation of cigarettes to New York consumers. See N.Y. PUB. HEALTH LAW 1399-ll (2). However, subdivision two also contains a limited exception that allows "a person other than a common or contract carrier" to transport eight hundred cigarettes (four cartons) or less "at any one time to any person in this state." N.Y. PUB. HEALTH LAW 1399-ll (2).
As noted above, subdivision two of the Statute prohibits common or contract carriers from "transporting" cigarettes directly to New York consumers. See N.Y. PUB. HEALTH LAW 1399-ll (2). In addition, subdivision two makes it illegal for "any other person" to transport cigarettes directly to New York consumers. However, a person other than a common or contract carrier is permitted to transport "not more than eight hundred cigarettes [four cartons] at any one time to any person in this *276 state." N.Y. PUB. HEALTH LAW 1399-ll (2). This has been referred to as the "delivery exception."
This Court finds that Plaintiffs' claim is unlikely to succeed based on this argument. Initially, this Court notes that nothing in the Statute precludes an out-of-state business from taking advantage of the delivery exception. A cigarette retailer located in any state is free under the Statute to transport cigarettes to New York customers so long as he or she is not a common or contract carrier and does not ship more than four cartons to any one customer at any one time.
There were card games -- blackjack and craps -- dad wasn't a gambler, but he was good at winning cartons of cigarettes and tins of beer -- he didn't smoke or drink, so traded the goodies for film and socks! Other things gave my dad pleasure, so much so he even noted the time they happened: