Everyone has friends and family who have expressed some interest in quitting smoking, or at least in cutting back, but who don’t gain much traction when they try to quit. The patch makes them jittery, the gum gives them stomach aches, and cold turkey’s unthinkable.They’ve taken a puff here or there of e-cigs, but have been reluctant to make the initial investment necessary for an electronic cigarette starter kit. It’s understandable; despite being far cheaper than traditional cigarettes, e-cigs can still cost between $1,500 and $3,500 and many smokers find themselves on tight budgets.
Next holiday season or around your favorite smoker’s birthday, an e-cigarette starter kit is precisely the sort of gift you should consider. But once you’ve decided to buy one for someone you care about, how can you know how to customize the order for them? Just as if you were buying clothing or entertainment products, you’ll need to know what to order to best suit their needs. Generally the most important specifications will be cartomizer strength and flavor, battery specifications, and accessories.
Choosing the Right Cartomizer
The cartomizer, or cartridge containing e-liquid, determines the strength and flavor of the electronic cigarette. Most vapers find it important to buy cartomizers that most closely resemble their habits with analog (tobacco) cigarettes, especially after first making the switch.
First, you’ll need to specify the strength of the cartomizer. Generally, ‘very strong’ e-liquid mixes are similar to smoking unfiltered cigarettes based on nicotine content. ‘High’ or ‘medium’ correspond generally to full-flavor cigarettes, with ‘light’ delivering the same amount of nicotine as light or ultra-light cigarettes. There’s also a non-nicotine option, but it’s probably best to let the smoker choose when that level is right for them.
In terms of flavor, the old standards of traditional tobacco and cool menthol are popular options. A lot of new vapors will stick to these out of habit, but part of the fun and the innovation of e-cigarettes lies in the ability to enjoy new and exciting flavors. If you choose to buy a special flavor, be sure to take their general taste preferences into consideration. Your uncle John might thoroughly enjoy whiskey flavored cartomizers but frown upon champagne (maybe not, you know him better than we do).
Your e-cigarette starter kit will come with a battery. As the source of energy for the heating coil, which vaporizes the e-juice and allows the e-cigarette to be puffed, the battery is far from optional. The battery size, manual/automatic operation, and strength are all possibly factors you’ll need to decide upon when ordering.
Manual vs Automatic: No, you’re not driving a car, but e-cigarette batteries are differentiated by the way they’re activated. Manual batteries have a small button that the user pushes to activate the heating element. Automatic batteries, on the other hand, are activated by the force of the user inhaling. Vapers’ preferences differ, so it might be a good idea to grab one of each as part of the gift pack. If that isn’t possible, automatic batteries are more apt to feel like the ‘real thing’ because they’re not button-activated.
Battery Strength: Larger batteries last longer and generally have higher ampage. Shorter batteries charge faster and are cheaper. The best option isn’t always clear, but vapers who are frequently out of the house for extended periods of the day are more likely to appreciate longer-lasting batteries.
You can see our previous entry for a more detailed guide on choosing the right electronic cigarette battery.
Accessories allow you to customize your gift according to the recipient’s lifestyle even further. Do they spend long hours commuting each day? Get them a car adapter. Are they
stuck at a computer at work? A USB charger might be a handy add-on. Do
they like to share? Pick up some vapor caps. Electronic cigarettes carrying cases are a stylish option for on-the-go vapers.
If a starter kit seems like too much of an investment, disposables can also be a solid introduction to e-cigarette vaping, for a more casual gift. In the long-run, though, the starter kit is much more cost-effective.