The use of a waterpipe (or a hookah) to smoke shisha that contains tobacco is prohibited in enclosed workplaces and enclosed public places, as well as other designated places in Ontario. This includes bars, restaurants and the outdoor patios of these establishments.

The use of a waterpipe to smoke herbal shisha is not prohibited under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017 (SFOA, 2017).

Inspectors appointed under the SFOA, 2017 have the authority to remove a sample of a substance or any other thing that is relevant to the inspection or take a specimen that is relevant to the inspection. This includes taking a sample of shisha product from a waterpipe that is being used or offered for use to confirm the presence or absence of tobacco.

It is against the law to sell, offer to sell, distribute and offer to distribute flavoured tobacco products, including flavoured tobacco used in a waterpipe.

Proprietors (owners, operators, and/or persons in charge) of enclosed public places must make sure that smoking laws are complied with. Tobacco shisha cannot be smoked inside enclosed public places or enclosed workplaces, such as bars and lounges, or smoked in other prohibited places such as a restaurant or bar patio.

An individual found to be smoking or vaping in a prohibited place may be charged with an offence, and if convicted, could face a maximum fine of $1,000 (for a first offence) or $5,000 (for any further offence).

A proprietor that fails to fulfill their responsibility under the law may be charged with an offence, and if convicted, could face a maximum fine:

Signage responsibilities

  • For individuals:
    • $2,000 (for a first offence);
    • $5,000 (for a second offence);
    • $10,000 (for a third offence);
    • $50,000 (four or more offences).
  • For corporations:
    • $5,000 for a first offence
    • $10,000 for a second offence
    • $25,000 for a third offence
    • $75,000 for four or more offences

Order or print “No Smoking”, “No Vaping” or retailer signs for your establishment.

Other responsibilities

  • For individuals:
    • $1,000 for a first offence
    • $5,000 for two or more offences
  • For corporations:
    • $100,000 for a first offence
    • $300,000 for two or more offences

Print the Waterpipe Use in Enclosed Public Places, Enclosed Workplaces & Other Areas Fact Sheet.