Cigar Aficionado

Spain Bans Smoking Across Country

The largest consumer of Cuban cigars in the world has banned smoking in its bars, restaurants, cafés and most public enclosed spaces. Effective Sunday, Spain's government has tightened its smoking restrictions, imposing fines of 30 euros ($40) for first-time offenders and as much as 100,000 euros ($133,000) after three violations. Restaurant and bar owners will pay between 60 and 100,000 euros for each violation.

According to Reuters, the Spanish government claims that smoking kills 55,000 of its citizens each year, though business owners feel that the smoking ban will kill a large percentage of their profits, as the country has a deep-rooted culture of smoking in cafés, tapas bars and restaurants.

When anti-smoking laws were first imposed four years ago, most privately owned establishments were able to choose whether or not to accommodate smokers. Now the choice has been made for them.

"Wish political correctness would run its coarse already,the goverments are acting like commies,and were stuck with it/what a crap/after this what is next in the mind of the politio machine,to do away with/" —January 9, 2011 23:13 PM
"In a country where torture is glorified in the bullfighting rings, this is what Spain sees as an issue to condemn? Unbelievable in this day and age. I guess it shouldn't be surprising with the power of anti-smoking groups, but I'm just shocked that killing animals as a "sport" in public arenas would be embraced but being allowed to kick back with a good smoke is now banned. Go Bulls!!!" —January 8, 2011 20:34 PM
"They're not prohibiting smoking in plazas, parks, and other areas. Cigars will still be smoked, probably as frequently. What sucks is that, as a student studying abroad there (southern spain), there was only ONE cafe to hang out in that wasn't super smoky - Starbucks. I would have liked to hang out in more Spanish-style cafes but with all the traveling, rain, and second hand smoke I always had colds and didn't want to hang out in smoky cafes. " —January 7, 2011 18:01 PM
"I honeymooned in Barcelona 6 years ago and really had an amazing time. Eating at tapas bars then having a nice Cohiba made the trip even more memorable. Now if I ever have a Cuban cigar it brings back tons of memories of my trip. Really really sad to hear this news as I intend to go back with my wife one day. Good news...I still have some Cohibas from the trip in my humidor." —January 7, 2011 14:42 PM
"It's a shame that we are losing our rights to decide how we will live our lives all over the world. I just want to have a cigar indoors, but unless it is in my house, it is illegal to do that here too!" —January 6, 2011 10:42 AM
"Well, once again, the common hard working people's rights to be Adults, and make lifestyle choice have to be dictated by a Nanny Government I guess we are not very far behind them when it comes to deciding whats good for you or not...." —January 6, 2011 02:24 AM
"I've been to Spain a few times, loved it great culture, food and people. Cuban puros were readily available and in some instances the prices were cheaper than government stores in Cuba. Smoking was not faux pas, especially in restaurants, tapa bars, hotel lounges and the bull ring. Possibly the EU health gestapo was leaning heavily on the Spanish government. " —January 5, 2011 15:22 PM
"I second that. I won't be visiting Spain anytime soon. So sad people sit back and are told what to do and when to do it. The cubans are really going to think the whole world has gone mad with all these smoking rules. They are going to have a build up of Behikes overflowing into the water without Spain consuming them!" —January 4, 2011 19:26 PM
""The Spanish government claims that smoking kills 55,000 of its citizens each year". Only 55,000? That sucks as I was planning on visiting Spain this summer. Watch as those poor SOB's lose revenue and once again the citizenry will bear the brunt of the loss with higher taxation. When will we learn? " —January 4, 2011 16:19 PM