Buying Cigars Online vs. In-Person


Cigar lovers never want to be caught without great smokes, but what is the best option for buying cigars? It is a question that can be answered with a quick look at a few criteria. Whether buying cigars online or in-person, this brief guide describes the different cigar sales options and how each can minimize frustration and deliver a more rewarding cigar buying experience. 

Pros and Cons of Online Shopping

Today’s fast-paced world makes buying cigars online not only a convenience but a necessity for many cigar aficionados and enthusiasts. However, online cigar shopping can often be hit or miss, so a quick look at some pros and cons of online cigar buying helps when deciding if it’s the right choice for you.


  • Convenience
  • Varied selection
  • No physical contact
  • Special offers
  • Price

Buying cigars online is the most convenient way to search for cigars. Just a click or two, and cigars can be sorted by brand, shape, size, price, type, or country of manufacturer. Some online cigar sellers feature numerous special offers, whether as bulk discounts, closeouts, or packaged deals. Buying online can often provide cigar lovers with great overall values.

However, purchasing cigars online also has drawbacks. Some of these might even be deal-breakers for many cigar smokers.


  • Inconsistent humidification
  • Potential damage to cigars and cigar boxes
  • No in-person interaction/assistance  
  • Shipping costs
  • Extended wait time to receive your cigars
  • Possible inventory delays/backorders

You are sure to encounter online cigar sellers that don’t guarantee cigars arrive in optimal condition. Cigars can arrive dried out, over-humidified or damaged. It can be a further hassle trying to get the cigars replaced or refunded. Shipping costs can also erase or often exceed any savings from special offers. The chance of backorders and shipping delays can also mean cigars arrive much later than scheduled. 

These disadvantages are important considerations, to be sure, but online cigar shopping is still growing in popularity. Unfortunately, buying cigars online comes down to trial and error. So, a little diligence is necessary when choosing a reputable online seller that can ensure cigars arrive promptly, in optimal condition, and at a fair price. 

Pros and Cons of Buying at Cigar Shops

Of course, the alternative to online cigar shopping and still the most popular method is in-person cigar buying at cigar shops and lounges. As with online shopping, shopping at cigar retail locations has various pros and cons to consider when deciding which is the best cigar buying option for you. 


  • Hands-on 
  • Live social interaction
  • Inventory availability 
  • In-store only offers/events
  • Lounge setting

In-store cigar shopping provides several advantages that online shopping cannot, including having someone there to assist you in-person and make recommendations. Also, this hands-on experience lets you inspect the cigars to get a better idea of the look, feel, aroma, and condition of cigars. In addition, you don’t need to worry about shipping costs, and some shops have cigar lounge areas for you to enjoy newly purchased smoke.

In-store cigar buying indeed has its rewards that many cigar lovers enjoy, yet the in-person cigar experience also has a fair share of drawbacks to think about too. 


  • Inconvenience 
  • Higher costs
  • Limited cigar selection
  • Crowds
  • Small on-hand inventory

Convenience is one of online cigar buying’s biggest advantages, yet some cigar aficionados find the opposite is true for buying cigars in a cigar shop. The combination of travel time, added fuel costs, parking, and dealing with crowds are just a few of the drawbacks you might encounter. In addition, most cigar retail stores have limited storage space and often higher overhead costs, meaning smaller inventories and higher prices than some online sellers. 

As with buying cigars online, the in-person buying option may be a more attractive way to go for some than for others. So take some time to explore cigar shops near you so you can get acquainted with the specific pros and cons each might offer, and locate the shop that best suitss your needs.

Which Cigar Store Option Is Best For You?

The best cigar shopping method is the one that best fits your lifestyle, location, or budget. For example, online cigar buying is convenient when there are no cigar shops near you and offers large cigar selections and often better prices. Yet in-person cigar shopping gives you many other advantages, including in-person customer service, closer examination of cigars, and even lounge atmosphere. 

So, when shopping online, take a peek at the cigar seller’s shipping and return policies, as well as their company profile page, to help determine if they’re the right fit for you. Whereas a good tip for in-person shopping is to chat with the staff to get a feel for the in-store shopping experience the shop provides. However, for an ever-growing number of cigar lovers, the combination of the two delivers the best overall shopping experience. 

Smoke Inn Has You Covered Either Way

We deliver a win for cigar lovers with online and in-person cigar shopping at its best. Smoke Inn partners with top-notch cigar manufacturers to provide customers with high-quality smokes at a great value, whether at home, in-store, or somewhere in between. 

Smoke Inn’s Online Cigar Store

Our website features the most popular premium cigars available today, as well as a collection of boutique and exclusive options. With quick navigation and checkout, you can easily search, sort, and purchase your favorite cigars from Smoke Inn’s regularly updated inventory. Various shipping and payment options are also available for no hassle cigar shopping, saving you time and money. 

Smoke Inn’s In-Person Cigar Shops

Smoke Inn also delivers the best option for those wanting a more personal approach to cigar buying. Eight convenient retail locations throughout the South Florida area feature state-of-the-art humidors loaded with the finest premium cigars. You can also check out cigar accessories at your leisure, speak with Smoke Inn’s expert staff, and relax with a good smoke in comfortable lounge areas for the ultimate in-store experience.

Easy Cigar Shopping, Better Cigar Smoking  

Buying cigars online has never been so easy, and shopping in person can be immensely rewarding too, but you don’t have to settle for one or the other. No matter your lifestyle, location, mood, or budget, you can buy cigars anyway you want. So, shop Smoke Inn for all of your online and in-person cigar and cigar accessory needs!

About Bryan Ives

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