Top 5 Pros and Cons of Buying Vape Products Online vs. In-Store

Let’s say you’re getting into vaping and looking to buy some vape products right now. The next step is to find a source, but maybe you’re not well aware of the buying options. Perhaps you haven’t decided yet whether to buy from a local store or online.

Nowadays, there are a lot of vape retailers to buy devices, eliquid, and supplies from. Choosing which one to buy from takes some thought if one wishes to not be disappointed by faulty, bootleg, or overpriced products. There’s also where it’s located, how you pay for your purchase, and how you get your products.

Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of buying from either a local vape shop or an online retailer.

Pros of Buying In-Store

The best thing with buying from a local store is that it’s local. It’s nearby, so you don’t have to go far to get what you want. And what’s even better is that you get your vape products right then and there, so you get to take them home and use them right away.

If you’re lucky enough to have a vape shop near you that’s well supplied and offers a good variety of products, almost nothing else can compare to it. But even if you have to travel a bit to reach the nearest vape shop, being able to obtain vape products right away is a good thing.

That’s even better if you’re buying vape devices. You get to see them and hold them in your hand. Whichever you choose it’ll more likely be the one that best fits your needs.

Aside from being able to pick and obtain stuff you want right away, you also get to support the local economy. You’re able to see for yourself who you’re supporting and choose to be a patron if you happen to like that establishment.

You also get to ask questions about the products and get an answer quickly and easily. This is especially good for beginners who are still learning about vaping.

Cons of Buying In-Store

On the other hand, buying from a local vape shop can be more expensive. Then again, when factoring in shipping costs with buying online, that can even it out.

However, local shops may not have the same variety as online vape retailers. You may find that some products you want are only available online. Also, online retailers have more competitive prices, so you may find vape products at rock-bottom prices.

Also, you have to physically go there yourself, which some people may not prefer. Having to travel all the way there, especially if it happens to be far away, can be a bit of a drag.

Finally, vape shops aren’t always open. For instance, during the pandemics, they’re subject to lockdowns. Some may also not open on holidays, while others may even permanently close due to poor business. Traveling to a vape shop only to find them closed can be quite disappointing.

There may also not be as robust of a return policy in a local vape shop as those online. It does depend on the vape shop, as some may be fairly lenient and cooperative, while others may be more strict or frustrating to deal with.

Pros of Buying Online

All you have to do to browse vape products online is to visit the website. You can see everything right there on your screen, and all you have to do is pick which one you like. You likely get to do this at any time of the day, so you don’t have to worry about the retailer being closed.

You don’t have to go out of your house and travel to a physical store in order to purchase vape products. You also don’t have to deal with either a pushy salesperson making you uncomfortable or a disinterested one making you frustrated. You get to either take your time shopping or make your purchase right away in the comfort of your own home.

There’s a greater variety of products available online, so you’re spoiled for choice. You may even find something that you have never seen before. Also, since there are plenty of businesses online vying for customers, you can get much better prices.

If you don’t like one retailer, there are many others to purchase from. The Internet is a cornucopia of splendor, and that goes for vape products as well.

Lastly, online retailers tend to have robust return and warranty policies in place to entice more customers. That makes for a more worry-free vape shopping experience.

Cons of Buying Online

Perhaps the biggest disadvantage to buying vape products online is having to wait for your purchase to be delivered to your home. While the convenience of not having to leave your house can be really comforting, having to wait for them does take away from it.

The shipping costs can also make it more expensive, depending on your location. If delivering vape products to your home costs more than going to a vape shop to get them, then you may want to opt for doing your vape shopping in a physical store.

You also don’t get to see and touch those products, as well as be able to ask a salesperson for help. Some vape retailers do have helpful and responsive chat support, but it’s not exactly the same as being able to ask an actual salesperson your questions and getting answers face to face, which you may want if you’re a beginner in vaping.


In the end, it’s your decision on whether you buy from a physical store or order your vape products online. There’s no wrong choice as it has to fit well with your life situation. Vaping as a lifestyle choice should only enhance one’s life, especially if you happen to be a 

If you’re still undecided about where to buy vape products, there’s nothing stopping you from trying out both options. You can do something like buy a vape device online, then shop for your eliquid in a physical store. Having both options open can make vaping a much better experience.

kurt sonderegger
kurt sonderegger


Founder/CEO of Cafe Racer Craft E-Liquid

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