A cross-sectional study of tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship in airports across Europe and the United States

Andrea Soong, Ana Navas-Acien, Yuanjie Pang, Maria Jose Lopez, Esther Garcia-Esquinas, Frances A. Stillman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship (TAPS) bans are effective and are increasingly being implemented in a number of venues and countries, yet the state of TAPS in airports and their effect on airport smoking behavior is unknown. The objective of this study was to evaluate the presence of TAPS in airports across Europe and the US, and to begin to examine the relationship between TAPS and smoking behaviors in airports. We used a cross-sectional study design to observe 21 airports in Europe (11) and the US (10). Data collectors observed points of sale for tobacco products, types of products sold, advertisements and promotions, and branding or logos that appeared in the airport. Tobacco products were sold in 95% of all airports, with significantly more sales in Europe than the US. Advertisements appeared mostly in post-security areas; however, airports with advertisements in pre-security areas had significantly more smokers observed outdoors than airports without advertisements in pre-security areas. Tobacco branding appeared in designated smoking rooms as well as on non-tobacco products in duty free shops. TAPS are widespread in airports in Europe and the US and might be associated with outdoor smoking, though further research is needed to better understand any relationship between the two. This study adds to a growing body of research on tobacco control in air transit and related issues. As smoke-free policies advance, they should include comprehensive TAPS bans that extend to airport facilities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number959
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016


  • Environmental/occupational health
  • Promotion and sponsorship (TAPS)
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Smoke-free policy
  • Tobacco advertising

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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