Duty Free Cigarettes & Cigars
Duty Free Cigarettes
In the past, Duty Free cigarettes were the easiest category for price comparisons. There’s a monolithic brand – Marlboro. It’s available everywhere and representative of cigarette prices in general. Domestic prices are usually fixed and often controlled; and not much discounting goes on domestically.
The high duty also meant you’d generally get a good deal.
However, you find less and less mention of cigarettes online these days. I looked at 35 major international airports, including the top 30, and only 8 showed their cigarette assortment online. I had to get prices from the rest directly, often with some difficulty. Of these, Antalya was unreachable and Bangkok doesn’t carry Marlboro.
So, all told, I was able to get the Duty Free price of Marlboro at 33 airports in 27 countries during February 2020. They’re listed below from cheapest to most expensive. You won’t find this information anywhere else on the internet. By the way, you’ll notice that Abu Dhabi and Istanbul have different prices at departures and arrivals.
The order of the converted currencies may look slightly off due to exchange rate fluctuations.
Marlboro 200 Carton Duty Free - Airports
|Local Currency||Converted Currency|
|Taipei Taoyuan:||USD 22.00||USD|22.00|
|Hong Kong:||HKD 180||HKD|180|
|Kuala Lumpur:||MYR 104.75||MYR|104.75|
|Istanbul Arrivals:||EUR 23.00||EUR|23.00|
|Seoul Lotte:||USD 27.00||USD|27.00|
|New Delhi:||INR 2200||INR|2200|
|Abu Dhabi Departure:||AED 115||AED|115|
|Tokyo Narita & Haneda:||JPY 3500||JPY|3500|
|Doha Qatar:||AED 116||AED|116|
|Istanbul Departure:||EUR 31.00||EUR|31.00|
|Moscow Shermetyevo:||EUR 35.00||EUR|35.00|
|New York City JFK T1,5,8:||USD 48.00||USD|48.00|
|Miami :||USD 49.00||USD|49.00|
|New York City JFK T7:||USD 49.00||USD|49.00|
|Abu Dhabi Arrivals:||AED 208||AED|208|
|Paris CDG:||EUR 54.50||EUR|54.50|
|London HRW & GTW:||GBP 55.00||GBP|55.00|
The cheapest Duty Free prices are generally in Asia, the Middle East, and Russia. The most expensive prices tend to be in Europe and Canada, reflecting their high Domestic prices.
If you’d like to see how Duty Free and Domestic prices compare Read More
You can sort this table by any of the headings. However, my currency converter isn’t compatible with such sortable tables, so I’ve had to convert prices to Dollars using the mid-February exchange rates.
|Airport||Duty Free||Domestic||$ Savings||% Savings|
|Tokyo Narita & Haneda||$32.06||$44.80||$12.74||28.4%|
|Abu Dhabi Departure||$31.31||$59.90||$28.59||47.7%|
|Abu Dhabi Arrivals||$56.64||$59.90||$3.27||5.5%|
|New York City JFK T1,5,8||$48.00||$140.00||$92.00||65.7%|
|New York City JFK T7||$49.00||$140.00||$91.00||65.0%|
|London Heathrow & Gatwick||$70.57||$153.96||$83.40||54.2%|
Duty Free is cheaper than the domestic home market price everywhere except Moscow and Istanbul.
If you live in one of the more expensive places (over $75.00 per carton), Duty Free is a good deal for you everywhere.
Conversely, if you live in one of the cheapest countries (under $40.00 per carton), you should buy Duty Free leaving home. And it probably won’t be worth your while to buy on your return trip.
If you’re going to be visiting one of those cheap countries, you’ll be better off buying at your destination. That’d be either domestically or Duty Free – if arrival sales exist. And you should certainly buy Duty Free on your way back home.
As with spirits, you can buy Duty Free cigarettes on arrival at some airports, but don’t buy them going into Australia, Hong Kong, or Singapore. See the section Customs Allowances Around the World.)
Airlines carry only a limited range of cigarettes. It’s usually Marlboro and maybe a couple of other brands. Surprisingly, quite a few major airlines actually show their prices online:
Marlboro 200 Carton Duty Free - Airlines
|Local Currency||Converted Currency|
|Ryan Air:||GBP 30.00||GBP|30.00|
|Easy Jet:||GBP 43.00||GBP|43.00|
|Air France:||EUR 52.00||EUR|52.00|
|Virgin Atlantic:||GBP 46.00||GBP|46.00|
|British Airways:||GBP 50.00||GBP|50.00|
Generally speaking, airline prices tend to be cheaper than at airports.
Duty Free Cigars
Cigars, the other part of the Duty Free tobacco category, are even more difficult to find online than cigarettes
By far the greatest place for Duty Free cigars is La Casa del Habano. The choice is incredible, the prices are terrific – and Casa shows them on its website. As I’ve said elsewhere, it’s more of an experience than a cigar store.
Otherwise, the best online presentations I’ve found are Heinemann Duty Free at Frankfurt Airport and JR Duty Free at Tel Aviv Airport. Copenhagen Duty Free and Heinemann Duty Free at Oslo aren’t too bad. Heinemann at Sydney shows a small range.
Geneva has a nice walk-in humidor, with a good cigar selection, particularly of Davidoffs. That’s not surprising since Davidoff is based in Geneva.
Explanatory notes:Read More
Domestic price sources:
- Numbeo country ranking for most locations
- Numbeo city ranking for Dubai, Moscow, and Shanghai.
- Expatistan for Abu Dhabi, London, Miami, NYC, and Toronto.
- Store visits for Switzerland and France.