Torremolinos Info - Smoking

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General

If you smoke then you need to get organised while you are in Spain. Cigarettes cannot be bought from supermarkets or corner shops. However, unlike the UK, the cigarettes are not all hidden from view and do not all have plain packets.

Estancos

You will generally need to buy your cigs from estancos (tobacconists). These all have a big sign saying "Tabac" so they are easy to spot. Estancos are all licenced and some display their number as part of their sign. They open Monday to Friday, tipically from 9.30 to 1.30 and from 4.30 to 8.30. On Saturdays some open only in the morning. Tobacconists do not open at all on Sundays and public holidays.

Prices

The prices they charge are set by the government so it doesn't matter which shop you choose. Here are a few prices for some popular brands as at June 2019. Cigs for 200, rolling tobacco for 500g.
Benson & Hedges - 50.00€
Benson & Hedges Silver - 48.50€
John Player Blue - 50.00€
Royals Red - 44.50€
Silk Cut - 50.00€
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Drum - 90.00€
Golden Virginia - 89.50€
Old Holborn - 90.00€
Samson - 90.00€
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Condor (50g) - 5.05€
St. Bruno (50g) - 5.70€

Here is the full price list for all tobacco products. It can be confusing as there are literally thousands of brands. If you are looking for a particular brand then type it in the field, "Buscar en el nombre". For example type "benson" for all of the Benson & Hedges brands.
Cigarette price list website
For a more general list, click the "Laborales" field and select:
ChooseFor
CigarillosCigarettes
CigarrosCigars
Picadura de liarRolling tobacco
Picadura de pipaPipe tobacco
Tabaco de mascarChewing tobacco
Tobaco para aspirarSnuff
Otras laboresOthers
Then click "Consultar precios"
This will give you lots of pages so click "Ver todo" at the bottom of the list to see all chosen products in one long list.
The first price is for tobacconists, the second is for cigarette machines and similar.

When tobacconists are closed

Estanco Las Dalias (Avenida Isabel Manoja 3) is worth a try if the others are shut. A few bars have cigarette machines but not all such bars will give you change for the machine. Hotel El Pozo (Calle Casablanca 4) has a machine as does Salon Atlantis (Calle San Miguel 4). The newspaper kiosk near Pub Branigans and Springfield in Avenida Palma de Mallorca sells cigarettes.

Where can you smoke

This is much like the UK. You cannot smoke inside buildings including bars. The law, or at least the way that it is exercised, is vague when it comes to terraces. Where the terrace has side toldos (awnings) the law is as in the UK so no smoking because it appears as three walls. Here, that is generally ignored, though the council did have a crackdown at the start of 2019. Generally, if there are ashtrays on the tables then just get on with it.

Cigs to take home

At the moment there is no limit on the quantities of cigarettes and tobacco that you can take back to the UK. There are guidelines from UK Customs. These are 800 cigarettes and 1kg tobacco. You can take more for personal use and as gifts but be ready to answer questions and keep the receipts (Ask for the 'ticket' if not offered a receipt). All one brand is easier to explain than 20 packs that are all different. You could say, "I only get one holiday a year and I smoke 20 a day so I need 7000 cigarettes" but remember that details of your trips to Spain are recorded when you enter details for the airline. Dont say that the ciggies are for the lady next door who is watering your plants; it has to be a gift, not a payment in kind.
If buying more than the guidelines, take your passport to the shop as you may be asked for it.
This could all change with Brexit. We could be back to 200 cigs bought duty free (airport) or 400 bought duty paid (shops in town). I can't remember the tobacco allowances.
If cigs are cheap here, they are even cheaper in Gibralter but you are only allowed 200.

Cannabis

You may hear that it is legal here. It isn't. There are also stories that two plants are allowed. Not really.
However, as in the UK, personal use is not considered to be serious and weed can often be smelled in the street. It is relatively easy to buy here. I'm not suggesting that you should buy and smoke; just giving the information.
There are now shops in Torremolinos that sell CBD oil and various versions such as soap. There are also a few cannabis clubs that supply the real thing to their members. There is also a Grow Shop in the centre but it appears to have closed.

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Last updated 28th August 2019