Starting July 1, 2020, the minimum age to purchase tobacco products in Pennsylvania will be 21. The tobacco products include cigarettes, chewing tobacco and e-cigarettes, otherwise known as “vaping.” There is an exemption for active military members and honorably discharged military veterans who are 18 years of age. Also exempt are smoking cessation products and products sold by medical marijuana dispensaries.
In addition, the new law is tightening the use of tobacco on school property by students and non-students alike. This prohibition of tobacco products is for the school building, school property, school buses and other vehicles controlled or leased by the school district. School boards have the option of establishing an outdoor smoking area for non-students.
And if you think you can go across state lines to get your tobacco products, think again. Currently, West Virginia is the only bordering state that has yet to raise the tobacco buying age. Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Delaware as well as 13 other states have already raised the minimum age to 21 and the federal government is looking to follow suit. Congress recently passed a nationwide minimum buying age of 21 when it voted for the recent spending bill and the President signed it which means the new national age will go into effect in the summer of 2020.