Displaying and storing tobacco products

For detailed information regarding the sale and supply of tobacco products and smoking implements download the Guide for selling Tobacco Products in Western Australia (PDF 1MB).

Can I display tobacco products?

No. Since September 2010 retail outlets in WA are prohibited from displaying tobacco products and smoking implements.

What does a display ban mean?

Tobacco retailers need to ensure that tobacco products, including individual packets and cartons as well as smoking implements cannot be seen by the public from inside or outside the premises.

What types of smoking implements are covered by the display ban?

The types of smoking implements covered by the display ban include:

  • cigarette papers
  • pipes
  • cigarette holders
  • rolling machines
  • hookahs and water pipes intended for the use of smoking tobacco products
  • any other smoking implements which may be used for smoking tobacco.

Matches and cigarette lighters are not smoking implements so are not covered by the display ban and may continue to be displayed.

Where can I store tobacco products for sale?

All tobacco products must be kept in a tobacco sales unit that is completely covered so that tobacco products are not visible to persons inside or outside the shop. The tobacco products that are located at the point of sale must only be:

  • tobacco products that are available for sale
  • unopened packages of tobacco, or
  • opened packs of single cigars sold separately, or
  • single cigars sold separately.

A tobacco sales unit may have cupboard doors, drawers or flippers. When doors or flippers break, require repair or need replacing, all visible tobacco products must be covered immediately. If these cannot be covered or doors, drawers or flippers repaired immediately, then all tobacco products that remain visible as a result must immediately be removed from the tobacco sales unit and stored out of view until repairs are completed.

What happens when I’m serving, or re-stocking the tobacco sales unit?

The tobacco sales unit must remain closed at all times, however incidental viewing of tobacco products is sometimes unavoidable. When removing a requested product for a customer, when replenishing the tobacco sales unit or when stocktaking, the tobacco products that are visible must not:

  • comprise more than 150 product lines 
  • occupy more than 1m2.


  • only one package of each tobacco product must be visible – the tops of packs may be visible but packs of the same product cannot be displayed next to each other
  • only one type of package of each product is visible (for example, soft pack/hard pack)
  • any attempt to illuminate, highlight, or make a tobacco product or product line stand out or be brighter than its surroundings will be considered a display of tobacco product which is prohibited

Keep exposure of tobacco products to a minimum, for example replenish stock and undertake stocktake when the store is quiet or is closed.

Where can I put the tobacco sales unit?

Tobacco products can only be sold from one place within any premises. The tobacco sales unit must be located behind (but not on) a counter on the seller’s side, or directly above a counter with a vertical distance of at least 1.7m between the bottom of the tobacco sales unit and the floor (on the customer’s side).

Cigars may be kept in 1 or 2 cigar cabinets that are behind (but not on) a counter on the seller’s side, or directly above a counter with a vertical distance of at least1.7m between the bottom of the cabinets and the floor (on the customer’s side). A cigar cabinet is defined as a fully enclosed cabinet or box that is used to store only cigars.

A retailer operating from liquor licensed premises may store cigars in 1 or 2 cigar cabinets on either side of a counter.

NOTE: Tobacco products must not be located within 1 metre of confectionery or products designed specifically for, or marketed specifically to, children.

Last reviewed: 18-02-2020
Produced by

Tobacco Control Branch