As I was driving down I-35 in Lewisville yesterday I saw a billboard about how smoking underage can cost you more than just a fine. It made me ask myself – What does it cost to smoke? What is the financial cost of tobacco for the average smoker? How does smoking relate to insurance?
At a young age I saw my aunt with a bandage in the place where her nose used to be. She had to have her nose completely removed because of cancer and it had a very profound effect on me. Many young people ignore the financial and medical costs associated with tobacco use and aren’t exposed to the real risk of smoking until it is too late.
Here are some interesting facts I found about the cost of smoking:
- According to the American Cancer Society’s website, the average pack of cigarettes in the U.S. is $6.36.
- The health related costs for each pack of cigarettes is $35.00.
- There are an estimated 7,600 smoking related house fires each year in the U.S.
- The average adult smoker smokes 19.1 cigarettes per day.
Based on these figures, let’s see what the cost of using tobacco would be for someone that starts at the age of 20 through the age of 35 when they realize that maybe this is not a good idea:
- 1 pack a day – $6.36
- 7 packs a week – $44.52
- 364 packs a year – $2,315.04
- 5,460 packs over 15 years – $34,725.
Let’s assume that that same money was invested in a mutual fund earning 10% interest per year for the same 15 years:
- $192/month earning 10% interest compounded for 15 years = $79,958.24
It doesn’t take a genius to realize that smoking costs a person more than just the price of the cigarettes. Next time you see your young brother or neice using tobacco, try a different approach and give show them the real cost to using tobacco.