Sunday, 10 February 2008

Beijing smoking ban? Ha!

I'm sure some of my readers may have been wondering why I never write about pubs and clubs. Well the short and simple answer is because I don't go to them! And the reason I don't go to them is because of the damn @#$@%@$ smokers. I would love to go to them but I don't. I didn't go to them in my hometown of Sydney either. Not until they banned smoking. OK I'd go rarely and never stay very long till it just got too awkward so I just stopped going altogether. I hate the stench and I hate the fact that I just can't breathe after a while and cough non-stop. It's not particularly easy to have a 'good time' when you can barely breathe...

As great as Japan and Europe are for places to travel to, the smoking problem leaves a lot to be desired (moreso in Europe). After being in Taiwan where it was like 'heaven' and coming back here to 'hell' I just want to scream! Apart from Taiwan the only other place I have been to recently which was non-smoking-heaven was Hawaii. There, you are not even allowed to smoke in public places OUTdoors! eg at bus stops, parks, beaches, etc. And because the people who live there are so nature loving and are at one with their environment they are all very happy to oblige. To me it was simply heaven and made me enjoy my time there even more (in fact made me want to move and live there!)


Tue Jan 22, 1:26 PM ET

BEIJING (AFP) - Beijing is about to extend a ban on smoking in public places ahead of the Olympic Games despite the Chinese capital's image as a paradise for smokers who have faced few restrictions on where they can light up.

According to a draft bill the majority of public places, such as restaurants, schools, hospitals, stations, libraries and museums will have to be non-smoking.

Hotels will also have to reserve at least 70 percent of their rooms for non-smokers.

Smokers who ignore the ban will face a fine of 50 yuan (6.9 dollars, 4.7 euros) while those who allow them on their premises will have to cough up between 1,000 and 5,000 yuan, according to the bill.

Beijing had already taken some tentative measures to establish non-smoking areas in 1996 without much success, but the approach of the August Games provided the impetus for the new decision, Chinese media said.

The places that will accommodate athletes and officials during the Beijing Games will all be non-smoking.

China has about 350 million smokers, or about a quarter of its population, and accounts for a third of the world's smokers, according to official statistics.

About a million people die of smoking-related diseases each year in China. Since October, Beijing taxi drivers have in theory been banned from smoking in their vehicles under penalty of a fine of between 100 and 200 yuan.


Customers desert smoke-free restaurant
Fri Jan 18, 2008 1:45pm EST

BEIJING (Reuters) - Beijing's first smoke-free restaurant chain faces going out of business after its customers deserted it in droves after the ban was enforced, state media reported on Friday.

The Chinese are the world's most enthusiastic smokers, with a growing market of more than 350 million, making it a magnet for cigarette companies and a focus of international health concerns.

The occupancy rate at Meizhou Dongpo, a chain serving the spicy fare of southwest Sichuan province, had dropped to "about 80 percent of that enjoyed by other restaurants across the street" after it banned smoking in October, the China Daily quoted its manager as saying.

"We figure that if we're going to die, at least we're going to die honorably," the paper quoted Guo Xiaodong, deputy director of the restaurant chain, as saying.

Meizhou Dongpo had trained its waitresses how to discourage people from lighting up, but met resistance from customers who would lock staff out of private dining rooms to sneak a quick puff, Guo said.

"It just illustrates how much resistance there is to kicking the habit among Chinese smokers," the paper quoted Zhang Xuemei, a Beijing reporter who lobbied the restaurant to ban smoking, as saying.

Beijing, set to mark the 200-day countdown to the Olympics on Monday, has yet to issue clear rules on smoking bans, despite Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao promising a "smoke-free Olympics."

Along with spitting, and not queuing, Olympic organizers fear Chinese people's tendency to smoke anywhere at any time could taint the country's image in foreign eyes.

China banned smoking in taxis in October and launched a drive to ban smoking in hospitals, schools, and government offices last year.
But resistance to the campaign has been fierce.

Beijing authorities had written to 30,000 restaurants asking them to put smoking bans in place, but not a single one had taken up the suggestion, the paper said.

Good luck to them! I'd like to be positive but in my mind it just aint gonna happen. 6 months is not enough time to get people to change lifetimes and generations of bad habits. 6 years and that'd be a good starting point but it does not change that quickly. Even in a country like Australia the process was LONG and gradual...

I really really hate the fact that my social life has to go down the toilet just because some brain-dead $#%#%#@% choose to light up incessantly! ARGH! Drives me up the wall. Coupled with the fact that Chinese people are the worst for following rules. Make any rule or regulation and they will break it. They just don't bloody understand!


Don said...


May I suggest a link related to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games?

Our site:

Title: Beijing Olympics

Please let me know if you want a link back.
Many thanks for your reply.

Best Regards,

Rogers Susan said...

Environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) causes disease in non-smokers. Workplace bans on smoking are interventions to reduce exposure to ETS to try to prevent harmful health effects. The Irish Government on the 29th March 2004 introduced the first national comprehensive legislation banning smoking in all workplaces including bars and restaurants.

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