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What is Better? Refillable vs Disposable Vapes

December 23, 2022

Vapers at any experience level will inevitably have to choose: disposable vape pens or refillable devices. Some users may go back and forth between vaping both, changing periodically to suit their needs or explore new flavours. But which is better?

Here, we compare disposables against pre-filled pods and pod systems in rechargeable e-cigs and the cost of all these devices. Find out what works best for you in the long run and discover the latest developments in the vaping world.

Disposable Vape Pen

These single-use vapes include a battery and a pre-filled pod with your choice of liquid. They provide up to 600 puffs per kit. They are easy to use and often to people when they first start vaping.

Are Disposable e Cigarettes a Good Way to Give Up Smoking?

As a device to help you quit smoking, a disposable vape pen is the closest way to mimic that experience without the hassle of using refillable kits. Disposable e-cigs are probably the most familiar for an ex-smoker because they mimic the smoking experience much more than rechargeable vapes. They are less daunting when compared to refillable kits and offer similar nicotine strength for that essential hit.

Beginner Friendly

A disposable vape is a perfect device for beginner vapers. Disposable vape pens are zero maintenance compared to refillable devices, making them easy to access and use. They are also a whole step forward from the original rechargeable e-cigs. Beginner vapers can try many different flavours before settling on the right one.

Zero Maintenance

Compact and convenient, disposable vape pens also don't require any maintenance. They are mess- and hassle-free, allowing you to focus on the pure enjoyment of vaping.

Because these vapes are pre-loaded and ready to use, there's no fiddling around trying to get the right hit.

Ease of Use

If you want to start vaping, vape pens are a simple and easy option, as they are pre-filled and easy to use. The device doesn't require cleaning, maintenance, or refill. Most disposables have enough battery to last for the duration of the pen.

Flavour Variety

Disposable vape devices are available in various flavor options so that you can tailor your vaping to your taste. Disposable vape pens allow you to switch to different liquids depending on your mood and the occasion. Choose from different e-liquid nicotine types and enjoy this discreet and slimline device.


Disposables offer a quality and consistent experience, and these devices are portable. Indeed, you won't find a smaller e-cig size than a disposable vape.

Cost Efficiency

Disposable vapes tend to be appealing to users looking for a low-cost device.

That said, a disposable pen may not be as cost-efficient in the long run. Rechargeable vape devices and rechargeable vape mods have a higher upfront cost than buying disposables, but rechargeable devices are more cost-effective for heavy users. Buying disposables regularly means your vaping experience will cost you more.


Some vape pens struggle with battery longevity even though the battery should last for the lifespan of the pen. However, depending on the maker, some disposables use cheap materials. Some users complain that the e-liquid in a disposable pen is not such good quality.

Refillable Vape Kits

A refillable pen is a rechargeable vape device styled as a pen. It has a chamber you can fill with a liquid pod. A refillable vape device allows for interchangeable cartridges so that you can change the nicotine strengths and e-liquid nicotine type to customize the vaping experience.

Use and Maintenance

Operation on these rechargeable vapes is simple, with an on/off button and the option to change temperature settings. Some pens display information about battery life, temperature settings and the device status.

However, refillables do require maintenance and cleaning. You will need to change the coil from time to time and clean out the cartridge if the e-liquid runs. The rechargeable battery needs to be maintained.


There is a huge variety of refillable vapes on the market today, providing the vaper with customization options, like choosing their own juice, voltage, battery life and construction of the device.

Variety of Flavor and Nicotine

Refillable devices provide the user with a variety of e-liquid flavours which are more extensive than the one-note flavour profiles of the liquids in disposables. Refillable pod e liquids are generally of better quality too.

Quality of Flavor

The small atomizer coil in disposables can impact the flavour lacking the superior vape coil and wick. You might not notice it with a disposable, but heavy and prolonged use of a refillable will bring out these issues over time. The flavour and impact on vaping are why maintenance and cleaning are essential for a refillable e-cigarette.

Cost of Refillable Vapes

The upfront cost of these vapes is higher than disposables because they last longer. However, the price difference can be off-putting for someone who has given up smoking nicotine cigarettes and is looking for a slick low-cost alternative with an e-cig device.

That said, the long-term expenses can make refillable the better choice for value since you won't have to replace it constantly.

Which is Better in Terms of Cost?

Rechargeable vapes have a higher price point but offer better value for money over the long term. Disposable e-cigs have a low price, meaning disposable vape pens are affordable. However, they're not so cost-effective since you have to replace them after they run out.

What Is More Eco-Friendly?

Disposables usually aren't eco-friendly since you throw them away after use. The components — usually plastic, heavy metals and lead — will harm the environment. Vape pens that you discard usually comprise cheaper and lightweight materials, producing a wasteful and inferior quality product. Still, this can depend on the brand.

Not all disposable vapes are wasteful. Some have efficient energy use with a clean burn and anti-leak technology that reduce environmental harm. Plus, recycling options are available for people who make an effort. These programs collect, refill and recharge the battery producing sustainable and refilled pens.

So, Are Disposable Vapes Better Than Refillable Ones?

Disposable vapes may be the way to go for new vapers, while refillable appeal to those who know what they like and want options to customize. Whether a refillable or rechargeable vape device or a disposable vape pen is the best option comes down to user preference on vape style, pricing, and other factors that affect the e-cig vaping experience.

RELX has disposable and rechargeable vape devices to suit all user needs and tastes. However you vape, RELX will have the product for you.

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