Smoke-Free Policy – Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Where is smoking and vaping prohibited?

A. Indoors, smoking and vaping are prohibited in:

  • Bars,
  • Restaurants,
  • Casinos and other gambling facilities,
  • Hotels and motels,
  • Workplaces,
  • Schools (preschool to post-secondary),
  • Private clubs,
  • Common areas of multi-unit housing,
  • Buildings and vehicles owned, leased, occupied, or operated by the City or State,
  • Prisons and other correctional facilities,
  • Most other public places (including hospitals, museums, public buses and street cars, retail stores, retail service businesses, and the like).

Outdoors, smoking and vaping are prohibited:

  • In workplaces
  • In and within 5 feet of Richard and Annette Bloch Cancer Survivors Plaza on Loyola Avenue,
  • In and within 5 feet of Lafayette Square,
  • In sports arenas, stadiums, amphitheaters, and recreational areas with playground equipment, except when used for concerts, fairs, farmers markets, festivals, and parades
  • In bleachers and grandstands for use by spectators at sporting events
  • State law prohibits smoking within 25 feet of public entrances and wheelchair ramps of office buildings owned by the State and within 200 feet of entrances, exits, and outdoor areas of elementary and secondary schools.

Smoking and vaping are also prohibited in outdoor public places that are considered “enclosed.” An area is considered enclosed if it is bounded by two or more walls (or other barriers) and a ceiling. However, smoking and vaping are specifically permitted in designated sections of outdoor seating, serving areas, balconies, and courtyards of bars, restaurants, casinos, facilities that operate slot machines, pari- wagering facilities, and off-track wagering facilities, such as the Fair Grounds.

For a full list please click here.

Q. Does the smoke-free ordinance only apply to downtown businesses?

A. No, the smoke-free ordinance applies to all of Orleans Parish/City of New Orleans.

Q. Are electronic cigarettes allowed in bars?

A. No, vaping is prohibited in the same places as smoking.

Q. Can I place the “no smoking or vaping” signs at my business inside the restrooms instead of outside?

A:  No. Signs must be in plain view at entrances to your business and at the entrance of all public restrooms.

Q. Do signs need to be displayed on buses?

A: Yes, regulated vehicles, including public buses, must have at least one sign or window cling that is no smaller than 4 inches by 6 inches, meets all of the requirements of the Health Department’s regulations, and is plainly visible to passengers. 

Q. Does the ordinance apply to hotels?

A. Yes, smoking is prohibited in all hotels, motels, and inns operated in Orleans Parish.  For guidance on how to implement the smoke-free ordinance in your hotel, please click here.

Q. Are all guest rooms required to be smoke-free?

A. Yes, 100% of guest rooms in hotels, motels, and inns must be nonsmoking (and non-vaping). For guidance on how to implement the smoke-free ordinance in your hotel, please click here.

Q. How do I obtain required signs?

A. You can download a model sign here. The pdf file of the sign can be sent to a local printer to be printed in a more durable material (such as vinyl or plastic).

Q. How do I make a complaint?

You may make a complaint by visiting or calling 311 or (877) 286-6431.

Q. Who would be the best person to contact with questions or comments?

A. You may contact the Health Department regarding the ordinance by phone at 311 or (877) 286-6431 or by email at