Where are the cheapest cigarettes?


By web gangsta | Published:

There are lots of economic indicators you can use to determine if the local neighborhood pricing is more or less expensive than someplace down the road.

One common thing to compare is the BIG MAC INDEX, as the McDonald’s Big Mac is a fairly standard product that is sold around the world.  A Big Mac in Norway is going to be more expensive than a Big Mac in India.  Then again, the Big Mac in India is made from chicken instead of beef.. which may be part of the cost savings there.

Candy Cigarettes
Candy Cigarettes

Web Watch tends to use the price of a gallon of unleaded gas for our own comparison as we travel around the country.  The same gallon of gas that costs $2.96 in one state may cost $3.40 a few miles away across the state line.  Same company, and likely even the same source would keep the core costs the same, but surrounding influences — from local taxes to the neighborhood — can affect the price directly.

Others have used the gallon of milk price index…. oh, we could go on. Just pick a single product and run with it.

Which brings us to the CIGARETTE PRICE INDEX. This is where we check out how much a single price of a pack of MARLBORO RED cigarettes cost at a local convenience store in the most populous city in the state.

What have we learned?  Nothing we didn’t already know — some states are naturally going to be more expensive to feed your nicotine habit than others will be.

The FIVE LEAST EXPENSIVE STATES TO BUY A PACK OF CIGARETTES ARE (in order from lowest first):

  1. Kentucky
  2. North Dakota
  3. West Virginia
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Idaho

The FIVE MOST EXPENSIVE STATES TO BUY A PACK OF CIGARETTES ARE (in order with highest first):

  1. New York
  2. Illinois
  3. Hawaii
  4. Arizona
  5. Alaska

We’re talking an almost $10 difference in a single pack of cigarettes between Kentucky and New York.

We know things can be expensive in the City.  How much extra would you pay for your pack of cigarettes?  Is there a price point where you’d just up and quit, or would you just buy fewer in order to keep smoking?  Leave your thoughts in the comments below: