Americans spend an average of $6.65 for a cigarette pack. Not all US residents, however, pay the same price to satisfy their smoking habits.
New Yorkers, for example, pay double the price paid by those in Missouri. Meaning, smoking two packs per week will cost you $1,088 a year in the Empire State. Missourians, by contrast, pay only $510.
How much money does an average cigarette pack cost? What is the state with the cheapest cigarettes? Why do some states have more expensive tobacco products? Find all the answers in this guide on cigarette prices by state.
What Affects Cigarette Prices?
Before we list the states, let’s learn why the price of cigarettes varies. Several factors affect how much residents pay for cigarettes in their state. Taxes, for instance, account for 44.3% of the total cigarette retail price per pack.
- Federal cigarette tax – Ever since 2009, the federal tax on cigarettes has been $1.01 per pack. This is a flat charge that applies to all packets, regardless of the state or brand.
- State taxes – State taxes are a significant factor that affects the average cigarette prices by state. D.C., for example, has the highest cigarette tax by state of $4.50 per pack. That’s why this destination is among the top five states with the highest cigarette prices.
- Brand – Not all cigarette brands cost the same. Plus, most brands have a broad selection of products, whose prices also vary. Meaning, the Marlboro carton price by state isn’t identical as the Newport cigarettes price by state.
- Neighborhood and store – A Public Health Reports study established back in 2009 that cigarette costs vary by community and store type as well. High-income areas have more expensive cigarettes. The research concluded that the prices were higher in minority neighborhoods where mobility was generally lower. As for store price variations, chain stores had the lowest cigarette prices compared to independent stores.
And one more thing before we dive into the data on cigarette prices by state — the actual price of smoking goes beyond the cost of cigarettes. Tobacco use often has costly consequences for your health. Smokers are more likely to develop chronic diseases that lead to soaring medical bills, especially in the USA. America, after all, has the highest healthcare costs by country in 2020.
Cost of Cigarettes by State
Scroll down to find where you can get the cheapest cigarettes in the USA. Below, we will list each state from least to most expensive. We will also analyze the cigarette tax for every state and provide approximations on the annual price of smoking two packs a week.
The average US retail price of cigarettes is $6.65 per pack. Americans who smoke two packs a week, therefore, spend about $688 a year.
|State||Average Retail Price Per Pack (Taxes Included)||Cigarette Excise Tax Per Pack||State Sales Tax Per Pack||Total State Tax Per Pack||Ranking|
Missouri has the lowest price of cigarettes by state in the US — an average of $4.91 for a pack. The low cigarette excise tax ($0.17 per pack) and state sales tax ($0.21 per pack) are responsible for the affordable cigarette prices in Missouri. This price earns Missouri the top position when analyzing the cheapest carton of cigarettes by state, as well. With 10 packs per carton, the average carton cost is about $49.1.
Missouri has a cigarette use rate of 19.4% among adults, placing it among the 15 states with the highest rate of smokers. Missourians who smoke two packs a week spend about $510 a year. Residents in this cheapest state to buy cigarettes save double the money than smokers in Connecticut, New York, and Rhode Island.
The price of cigarettes in Georgia is $5.30 per pack. This makes Georgia the second destination with the cheapest cigarettes by state. This state has respective cigarette excise tax and sales tax of $0.37 and $0.23 per pack. Georgia has a tobacco use rate of 16.1%, while its residents spend about $551 a year if they smoke two packs a week.
3. North Carolina
With an average price of $5.32, the cost of cigarettes in North Carolina is among the lowest throughout the country. People from this state who smoke about two packs a week spend around $553 a year. The cigarette use rate among adults in North Carolina is 17.4%.
4. North Dakota
North Dakota ranks fourth among US locations with the lowest cigarette cost by state. The average cigarette prices in North Dakota move around the $5.36 threshold. So, 19.1% of adult smokers in the state spend approximately $557 annually on two packs per week.
Tennessee is the 6th state with the highest tobacco use rate in the US and rounds up the top-five list of states with the cheapest cigarettes. Cigarette prices in Tennessee show that one pack in the state is $5.39, resulting in average annual smoking costs of $560. This approximate applies only to Tennesseans that smoke two packs weekly.
Wyoming is the 6th state with the lowest cost of a pack of cigarettes by state. People who smoke two packs a week here spend a bit over $560 per year on their smoking habit. Namely, one packet in Wyoming is only $5.40. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why the state has a high rate of tobacco use — 18.8%.
7. South Carolina
Cigarette prices in South Carolina stand at a reasonable $5.42 per pack. This means that anyone who buys two packs weekly will spend $563 yearly on smoking. South Carolina is one of the states with tobacco use rates among adults of 18%.
In our list of cigarette costs by state, Alabama won the 8th place with its average price of $5.44 per pack. This state applies a cigarette excise tax of $0.68 per pack, on top of the $0.18 of sales tax. Alabama residents that smoke 40 cigarettes a week spend about $565 a year. The Cotton State has one of the highest tobacco use rates of 19.2%.
The average cost of cigarettes in Mississippi is $5.47. That’s how this state ended up among the top 10 in the list of the cheapest cigarettes by state. Smoking 40 cigarettes weekly cost Mississippians about $568 annually. While the low cigarette price doesn’t necessarily boost smoking, Mississippi has a high cigarette use level of 20.5%.
We must mention Nebraska as one of the American states with the cheapest cigarettes. Nebraskans pay an average of $5.48 for a pack, and they ranked 10th compared to the other states. Buying two packs every week for a year in Nebraska will cost you $567.
Kentucky residents pay a reasonable average of $5.60 for a 20-cigarette pack. So, the Bluegrass State scored the 11th place on our cigarette prices by state rundown. With this average price, smokers in the state spend about $582 a year if they buy 40 cigarettes per week. The low cigarette prices in Kentucky are among the reasons that this state has the second-highest rate of tobacco use of 23.4%.
Idaho is another state with cheap cigarettes — the average price for a pack is $5.61. Buy two packs every week, and you’ll spend $583 on smoking per year in Idaho. The tobacco use rate among adults in this state is 14.7%.
With cigarette prices in Indiana being $5.75 per pack, Indiana is the 13th best destination for American smokers. This average price of cigarettes by state is reasonable and contributes to the annual smoking costs of about $598 (for 40 cigarettes per week). Indiana has a tobacco use rate of 21.1%, making it the 5th US state with most adult smokers.
The cost of cigarettes in Colorado is $5.82 per pack or $58.2 per carton. If you live in Colorado and smoke two packs weekly, you will spend $605 on cigarettes a year. In this state, the cigarette use rate is 14.5%.
Our list of top 15 states with the cheapest cigarettes in the USA ends with Louisiana. The Pelican State has a cigarette use rate of 20.5%, and the average price smokers pay here is $5.83 per pack. Smoking 40 cigarettes a week in Louisiana will cost you about $606 a year.
Virginia ranks 16th on our list of tobacco prices by state. The average cigarette prices in Virginia are under $6 or, more precisely, $5.86. Meaning, a carton in this state is $58.6, while the annual cost of smoking two packs a week is $609. Virginia has an average cigarette use rate of 14.9%.
Arkansas applies a cigarette excise tax of $1.15 and a sales tax of $0.37 per pack. These two increase the average price of 20 cigarettes in Arkansas to $6.13. So, smokers in Arkansas who smoke about 5.7 cigarettes a day spend $637 per year. Despite holding the reasonable 17th position regarding cigarette price by state, Arkansas has a rate of 22.7% adult smokers.
Set at $6.14, the price of cigarettes in Oregon earned the state a place among the top 20 states for smokers. Oregon doesn’t have any sales tax on cigarettes but applies a $1.33 excise tax. Oregon residents spend $61.4 per carton on cigarettes and about $638 a year for two packs per week. The tobacco use rate in this state is 15.6%.
19. West Virginia
The West Virginia cigarette prices are the same as those in Oregon — 6.14 per pack. It, however, has a sales tax of $0.35 on cigarettes. West Virginia is also the state with the highest tobacco use rate among adults of 25.2%.
With cigarette prices in Florida around $6.21, this is the last state in the top 20 US destinations with cheap tobacco. Floridians pay $62.1 per carton and spend $646 a year. Smoking, however, isn’t prevalent in the state as the tobacco use in Florida is 14.5%.
Iowa belongs in the group of destinations with a reasonable cost of a pack of cigarettes by state. Cigarettes cost $6.35/pack. A person who smokes 40 cigarettes a week in Iowa spends $660 on smoking a year. The cigarette use in the state is, however, as high as 16.5%.
Given the below-average cigarette prices in Iowa, this is an excellent state for smokers. It, however, is not that suitable for businesses, having the highest corporate taxes by state in the country.
The cigarette use rate in Texas is 14.4%, placing this state in the better half. The situation is similar to the cost of cigarettes in Texas because the state ranks as the 22nd best destination for smokers. With an average pack being $6.37, Texans spend about $662 a year on their smoking habit.
23. New Hampshire
New Hampshire has no sales tax and yet ranked 23rd on our cigarette prices by state rundown. Only the cigarette excise tax of $1.78 per pack affects the New Hampshire cigarette prices. A carton in this state costs about $63.9 since the average pack price is $6.39. New Hampshire has a 15.6% tobacco use rate.
The price of cigarettes in Kansas is $6.44 per pack and $64.4 per carton. With such a price, Kansas residents that smoke 40 cigarettes a week spend $670 every year on smoking. As for the tobacco use rate in Kansas, the state belongs in the wrong half with a significant percentage of 17.2%.
Montana is another jurisdiction where the price of cigarettes by state isn’t affected by a sales tax. The Big Sky state only has a cigarette excise tax of $1.70, and that’s it. An average pack in the state costs $6.46, while the tobacco use rate is 18%.
26. South Dakota
With South Dakota cigarette prices around $6.50, the state’s residents spend $676 on smoking per year. This is the 26th on our list of states with the cheapest cigarettes. Meaning, we’ll start analyzing the more expensive half of this guide with the next state – Ohio. South Dakota has a cigarette use rate among adults of a considerable 19%.
Cigarette prices in Ohio are $6.55 per packet. With this pricing, Ohioans spend $681 a year on 40 cigarettes a week. Despite having pricey tobacco, Ohio has one of the highest cigarette use rates of 20.5%.
Delaware ranked 28th on our definitive list of cigarette prices by state. Delaware cigarette carton prices are about $66.8 as a single packet costs, on average, $6.68. It’s amusing that this state doesn’t apply any sales tax but has a hefty cigarette excise tax of $2.10 a pack.
Delaware has an average tobacco use rate among adults of 16.5%. Instead of spending money on cigarettes, Delawareans grow their savings, with the state boasting the highest average retirement savings by state in the nation.
Utah is a fantastic state in many regards. West Valley City, for instance, is the best place for flipping houses in America. Plus, the state has the lowest tobacco use rate of only 9%. When it comes to cigarette costs by state, however, Utah could do better. With a total state tax of $2.09 per packet, Utahns pay about $6.75 for 20 cigarettes. Smoking two packs a week costs them over $700 a year.
With cigarette prices in Michigan being $6.78, people living in the state pay nearly $70 for a carton. Michigan residents who smoke two packets within seven days spend an average of $705 in 52 weeks. Still, Michigan notes a high tobacco use rate of 18.9%.
The cost of cigarettes in Maryland is $6.95 a pack or $69.5 per carton. In Maryland, if you give up smoking two packs per week for a year, you can save about $723. Smoking isn’t that popular and the tobacco use rate is only 12.5.%
Oklahoma doesn’t have a sales tax but still has a high average price of cigarettes by state. The cost of cigarettes in Oklahoma is nearly $7 at $6.96. Meaning, its residents spend $724 on two packets per week over a year. Oklahoma also has a high cigarette use rate of 19.7%.
Less than 16% (15.7%) of adults in Nevada use cigarettes, placing the state among those with average tobacco use rates. The price of cigarettes in Nevada, however, is above the average at $7.02 per pack. Those who buy two packets every seven days, annually spend $730 on smoking.
34. New Mexico
Smoking in New Mexico costs smokers $7.07 per packet, $70.7 per carton, and $735 per year. This is one of the destinations with the most expensive cigarettes by state in the US. Expensive tobacco is one of the reasons why cigarette use in New Mexico is at 15.2%.
Maine has high cigarette carton prices by state and tobacco use among adults. Smokers based in the state pay $7.13 per pack or $71.3 per carton. Smoke 5.7 cigarettes a day for a year in Maine, and you’ll spend $741. Despite the hefty price of cigarettes, the state’s tobacco use rate among adult consumers is significant 17.8%.
Cigarette prices in Arizona earned the state the 36th position on our list of states with the cheapest tobacco. A packet here costs $7.63, resulting in total annual costs of $793 for those who smoke 40 cigarettes a week. As for cigarette use, only 14% of Arizona adults reported indulging in this habit.
About 16.4% of adults in Wisconsin use cigarette products. The rate makes sense as the cost of cigarettes in Wisconsin is as high as $7.72. This is the first state on the list where smokers of 2 packets a week annually spend over $800 on cigarettes.
38. New Jersey
This destination has unfavorable cigarette prices by state at $7.85. One carton in the Garden State costs about $78.5. These cigarette prices in New Jersey result in yearly smoking expenses of $816. Approximately 13.1% of adults living in New Jersey smoke.
With the price of cigarettes in California being $8.31, Californian smokers spend $864 a year on two packets per week. These tobacco expenses place the state in the company of other states with high cigarette prices. California meanwhile has a smokers rate of 11.2%.
About 17% of adults in Pennsylvania use cigarettes, meaning the state comes somewhere in the middle compared to the rest. Smokers in the state deal with Pennsylvania cigarettes prices of $8.51 a packet. Calculations show that smoking 5.7 cigarettes a day in the state costs residents $885 annually.
Another destination with a soaring cost of cigarettes by state. The price of cigarettes in Washington State is $8.58 a packet or $892 a year. With a cigarette use rate of 12%, Washington is the fourth state with the lowest tobacco popularity among adults.
Cigarette prices in Illinois make this state a bad destination for smokers. A packet costs, on average, $8.79. Meaning, the annual smoking costs for intermittent smokers are $914. Among Illinois adults, 15.5% use cigarettes.
Vermont is among the states where smoking isn’t prevalent and only 13.7% of adults use tobacco. One packet in the state costs $8.85. These cigarette prices in Vermont represent an annual burden of $920 for light smokers.
Diving deeper into the destinations with high tobacco prices by state, we have Alaska next. The price of cigarettes in Alaska is $9.09, resulting in annual expenses of $945. This state doesn’t have sales tax on cigarettes, while its tobacco use rate is a significant 19.1%.
Minnesotans spend $979 a year on smoking as the price of cigarettes in Minnesota is $9.41. This state belongs among those where tobacco use isn’t too high — it stands at 15.1%.
With cigarette prices in Hawaii at $9.52 a packet, the state is the 6th worst destination for American smokers. If you smoke one carton per five weeks in Hawaii, you will spend $990 on cigarettes a year. Not many Hawaiians smoke, however, and the cigarette use rate in the state is only 13.4%.
D.C. has the highest cigarette excise tax of $4.50 per pack and the highest total state tax of $4.98 per packet. That’s why D.C. also has soaring cigarette carton prices by state of $98.7. The average pack price here is $9.87. Many adults smoke in D.C., and the use rate is 13.8%.
The average price of cigarettes in Massachusetts is $9.98, which makes this state expensive for smokers. Those buying two packets every seven days spend $1,038 on tobacco products. On the flip side, analysis of the states with the best job market by state shows that Massachusetts ranks first, making it a good destination for both smokers and non-smokers.
The cigarette prices in Connecticut place the destination in the top-three most expensive American states for smokers. Connecticut ranked 49th on our cigarette price by state rundown with its average pack cost of $10.00. About 12.2% of adults based here smoke and spend over $1,000 on tobacco products a year.
50. Rhode Island
This is the state with the highest sales tax of $0.66 per pack. So, it’s no surprise that the Rhode Island cigarette prices are the second-worst throughout the US. An average packet of 20 cigarettes in the state costs $10.15, resulting in annual smoking expenses of $1,055. Rhode Island has a tobacco use rate of 14.6%.
51. New York
With the price of cigarettes in New York being $10.47, this destination has the highest cigarette cost by state. New Yorkers spend $1,089 a year if they smoke 40 cigarettes a week. That’s one of the reasons why tobacco use in this state is low 12.8%. Even the cigarette prices by brand in New York are higher than the national average.
How much do cigarettes cost in each state?
Various factors, including state excise tax per pack, affect the actual cigarette cost in each state. In 17 states, therefore, the average price per pack is under $6.
Cigarettes are the most expensive in New York, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. In these states, they cost over $10 per pack. Missourians have the cheapest cigarettes that cost $4.91 on average.
Which state has the highest cigarette tax?
D.C. has the highest cigarette excise tax per pack of $4.50. Combined with the $0.48 state sales tax per pack, the total tax amount totals $.98.
Connecticut and New York are the second-worst states in this regard, with their cigarette taxes of $4.35 per pack. Still, New Yorkers pay the highest retail price per pack of cigarettes of $10.47.
What states have the most smokers?
West Virginia, Kentucky, and Arkansas have the highest smoking rates of 25.3%, 23.4%, and 22.7%, respectively. Indiana (21.1%), Tennessee (21.7%), and Mississippi (20.5%) come right next. Most smokers in America are males aged 25-64.
Which states have the cheapest cigarettes?
Missouri, Georgia, and North Carolina are the US states with the cheapest cigarettes. At $0.17, Missouri also has the lowest cigarette excise tax per pack. That’s the primary reason why the state’s residents pay an average of $4.91 per pack.
The cigarette prices by state vary drastically. Meaning, passionate smokers could save loads of money by merely relocating elsewhere. Smoking three packs a week in Missouri costs about $766, while in New York, about $1,633. The amount you’d save is nearly $870, which quickly adds up. If you’ve been smoking for 20 years, for example, you could’ve saved about $17,400. This is a significant amount of money that could’ve ended up in your bank account.