The Best Pod Vape Kits: Ultimate Buying Guide

Best Pod Vape Kits 2021

If you spend any amount of time reading about vaping products online, you’re already aware that pod vape kits are the biggest trend to hit the vaping industry in years. They’re great vaping choices for beginners, and they’ve also convinced a number of long-term vapers to “downgrade” from the larger vaping devices they once used. Regardless of your level of vaping experience, your interest in pod systems is shared by millions of e-cigarette users around the world. If you’re thinking about taking the plunge and buying one of these kits for yourself, only one question remains: What are the best pod vape kits in 2021?

pod vape kit on table

Pod vaping systems are so popular that most of the world’s top device manufacturers have at least one on offer. Some manufacturers are now making several different pod systems. Sifting through everything that’s available and picking the best pod system for your needs might seem like a monumental task, so we’re here to help you sort it out.  We’re going to identify the best pod vape kits on the market and explain their differences. We’ll also discuss some of the features that you’ll need to consider before buying any pod vaping device. First, though, we’ll answer the question that brought you here in the first place by discussing the best pod vape kit currently available in the UK.

Table of Contents

Quick Pick: The SMOK Novo 4 Is the Best Pod Vape in the UK

SMOK Novo 4 Best Pod Vape Kits 2021

Price: £24.99 | Buy It Now

Now in its fourth generation, the SMOK Novo series has been the de facto standard in refillable pod systems as long as it has existed. In short, the NOVO series has always featured the best possible blend of everything – timeless style, simple usage and excellent performance. The SMOK Novo 4 is much smaller than it appears in the pictures, but its flavour quality and vapour production will astound you if you’re currently using a pod system with pre-filled pods.

If you own a previous version of the SMOK Novo pod system and are wondering if it’s time to upgrade, the answer here is an unqualified “yes.” SMOK Novo owners have been requesting a variable-wattage version of the Novo for years, and it’s finally here. With its single-button design, the SMOK Novo 4 gives you full control over the warmth and intensity of the vapour without forcing you to learn a complicated control scheme. Just press the button twice to enter the configuration mode. Press the button again to advance the wattage in 0.5-watt increments. The SMOK Novo 4 also adds USB-C compatibility for faster charging compared to the previous Novo models.

The fact that the SMOK Novo 4 now has adjustable wattage means that it can support multiple coil configurations, so this device also has another new feature that Novo owners have been requesting for a while: replaceable atomizer coils. When it’s time for a new coil, it’s no longer necessary to discard the entire pod. Instead, you can simply pull the atomizer coil out and replace it with a new one. The SMOK Novo 4 has three different coils available to accommodate the mouth-to-lung vaping style or give you a restricted direct-to-lung hit. An adjustable airflow dial allows you to further customise your experience. Each SMOK Novo 4 coil has three silicone gaskets that help to prevent pods from leaking.

Blending advanced features with a design that’s still simple enough for a newbie to enjoy, the SMOK Novo 4 is an absolutely flawless pod vape for beginning and advanced vapers alike.

What Are Pod Vaping Systems?

A pod system is any vaping device that stores its e-liquid – and the heating coil responsible for vaporizing the e-liquid – in an enclosed plastic pod that you can pull out of the device for replacement. Pod systems are the latest generation of small, simple vaping devices. They replace the cigarette-shaped “cigalikes” that most beginning vapers used in the past.

Let’s illustrate. This is a picture of a cigalike.

cigalike picture

This, on the other hand, is a picture of a pod vaping system.

hexa pod vape kit

When comparing pod systems vs. cigalikes, you’ll find that they differ in four key ways.

  • Pod systems look nothing like tobacco cigarettes. If you use a pod system, no one will ever think that you’re smoking a cigarette.
  • Pod systems are slightly bigger than cigalikes. While that may mean you can’t hold one between your lips as you would a cigarette, it also means that pod systems have dramatically better battery life.
  • A pod system holds much more eliquid in its pod than a cigalike holds in its cartridge. Most pod systems also use translucent pods that let you see how much e-liquid you have left.
  • Pod systems generate much more vapour – and usually taste much better – than cigalikes. People almost universally find pod systems much more enjoyable to use.

Aside from those four key differences, there are some other considerations that you’ll need to think about before selecting the best pod vape kit for your needs. We’ll discuss those next.

Buying a Pod Vape Kit: Things to Consider

Designed for Nicotine Salt E-Liquids

Pod vaping systems are designed and calibrated to provide the best possible experience with nicotine salt vape juice. Nicotine salt e-liquid has a chemical formulation that allows it to mimic the natural state of nicotine as it is in the tobacco leaf. Nicotine salt e-liquid also has the right viscosity for excellent performance in pod vape devices. Although a refillable pod system allows you to use any e-liquid you like, you’ll have the best experience if you use a nicotine salt e-liquid. The most common nicotine strengths for nicotine salt e-liquids are 20 mg – for recent converts from smoking – and 10 mg for existing vapers with lower nicotine requirements.

Best for Mouth-to-Lung Inhaling

Most pod vaping systems have slightly restricted airflow characteristics that work best for inhaling the vapour from the mouth to the lungs. That’s because mouth-to-lung inhaling is what most former smokers prefer; it’s the same inhalation style you use when smoking. Pod vaping systems are all about delivering top-notch flavour and fast satisfaction; most aren’t optimized to produce enormous vapour clouds. With that being said, though, it’s becoming increasingly popular for pod systems to offer higher-output pods or coils for those seeking improved cloud production.

Modest E-Liquid Consumption

Vapour production influences the amount of e-liquid that a vaping device consumes. Pod vaping systems produce modest clouds. Compared to a larger and more powerful vaping device, a pod system consumes a very reasonable amount of e-liquid. That’s one of the primary reasons why some existing users of larger vaping devices have “downgraded” to pod systems; the lower e-liquid consumption means that they’re much less expensive to own than full-sized vape mods.

Proprietary Pods

Vaping devices come and go. Although pod vaping is a popular trend, there may not be enough demand to support every pod vape kit that exists. Every pod device uses proprietary pods, and few third-party accessories exist for any device. To ensure that you’ll always be able to buy replacement pods when you want them, it’s wise to buy a pod vaping device made by a respected company that’s going to support users with the accessories they need.

Pre-Filled vs. Refillable Pods

All pod vaping systems use either pre-filled or refillable pods, and your choice between the two types of devices will have a major impact on your vaping experience. Pre-filled pods are ready to use straight out of the package; just drop a pod in your device and enjoy. If your system uses refillable pods, you’ll buy bottled e-liquid and fill the pods yourself. Both types of pod systems have their own benefits.

Benefits of Pre-Filled Pods

  • The starter kits usually have lower up-front costs because the manufacturers expect to earn most of their money from sales of the pods.
  • Having pre-filled pods that you can drop in and use is simple, convenient and mess free.

Benefits of Refillable Pods

  • The long-term costs of ownership are usually lower because bottled e-liquid is less expensive per ml than pre-filled pods.
  • Filling your own pods means that you can use whatever e-liquid you like. A device with pre-filled pods, on the other hand, generally has a limited flavour selection.
  • You can usually use a refillable pod many times. Pre-filled pods are usually single-use products.

Replaceable Coil vs. Replaceable Pod

In a traditional pod system, the atomizer coil is a permanent part of the pod, and the entire pod is considered a disposable component. When you’re no longer happy with the flavour, you throw the entire pod away and start using a new pod. While that’s great for convenience, it’s also wasteful because there’s nothing wrong with the pod itself; it’s the atomizer coil that determines flavour quality. Using a pod system with a replaceable pod is also expensive because every time you need a new coil, you have to buy all of the other plastic components that go along with it.

For those reasons, many manufacturers are now releasing pod systems with replaceable coils. To replace the coil in your pod system, you’ll usually remove the pod from the device and then pull the coil out from the bottom of the pod. Atomizer coils for pod systems are usually sold in packs of five, while new pods tend to come in packs of two and cost about the same. Using a device with a replaceable coil almost always means that you’ll save money. In addition, many pod systems with replaceable coils have a few different coil options, giving you the ability to customise your vaping experience.

The Best Pod Vapes of 2021

Although we believe that the SMOK Novo 4 is easily the best pod vape on the market for most people, the fact is that different vapers have different requirements – and you may decide that the Novo 4 isn’t quite a perfect fit for you. If that’s the case, we have some more suggestions that you might find helpful. These are some of the other best pod systems on the market.

Aspire AVP Cube: Pod System for Intermediate Vapers

Aspire AVP Cube Best Pod Systems UK

Price: £19.99 | Buy It Now

The biggest theme in the world of pod vapes in 2021 has been the attempt to find the perfect balance between simplicity, convenience, performance and flexibility. Similar in some respects to the SMOK Novo 4, the Aspire AVP Cube is another device that adds some of the features of a more advanced vape mod to a small pod-based vape pen that’s easy to use and highly pocketable. We love the clean lines of the Aspire AVP Cube; it looks like a truly premium piece of consumer electronics. We also love the addition of a USB-C port, which allows 2-amp fast charging and eliminates the need to own a backup vaping device to use while your primary device charges. The Aspire AVP Cube charges to full from a completely dead state in a little over an hour.

In terms of its capabilities, the Aspire AVP Cube is one of the few pod systems that’s equally well suited to both the mouth-to-lung and direct-to-lung inhaling styles. If you install the 0.65-ohm mesh coil, the AVP Cube automatically operates in bypass mode and delivers the battery’s full available power to the coil. If you install the 1.15-ohm coil for mouth-to-lung inhaling, the AVP Cube changes modes and allows you to select between four power levels by double-tapping the fire button.

Geekvape Wenax K1: Small and Durable Pod Vape

Geekvape Wenax K1 Best Pod Vapes 2021

Price: £16.99 | Buy It Now

If you’re tired of pod vaping systems that are primarily made from plastic and don’t seem like they can really stand up to abuse, the Geekvape Wenax K1 is a pod vape that you should strongly consider. Featuring a durable aluminium body and a wide range of attractive colours, the Wenax K1 isn’t just a pod system that’s built from the ground up to withstand the rigours of everyday use. It’s also a bit smaller than most pod vapes, owing to the slightly lower-capacity 600 mAh internal battery. There’s no need to worry about the amount of time the Wenax K1 will spend on the charger, though, because it supports USB-C fast charging.

The Geekvape Wenax K1 uses a fully disposable pod rather than a semi-permanent pod with a replaceable coil, so it’s an extremely simple pod vape if you’re a beginner and want something that offers the maximum possible convenience. That doesn’t mean, however, that the Wenax K1 will leave you short of options. This device has two different pods available. Choose the 1.2-ohm pod for a smoother vaping experience or install the 0.8-ohm pod for warmer, larger vapour clouds. Regardless of the pod you choose, you’ll have three available power levels and can adjust the intensity of the vapour to your exact specifications.

Uwell Caliburn G: Best Pod Vape for Flavour Chasing

Uwell Caliburn G Best Pod Systems 2021

Price: £22.99 | Buy It Now

In the recent history of the vaping industry, the Uwell brand has had by far the best reputation among consumers for outstanding flavour quality. The popular Uwell Crown series of vape tanks, for instance, is much loved within the vaping community for its design that places depth of flavour at a higher priority than cloud production. The product designers at Uwell have kept that principle at the forefront in the Caliburn series, which has been one of the world’s most popular pod vapes for several years running.

The Uwell Caliburn G is the latest member of the famed Caliburn series, and it adds a few new features that Caliburn owners have been requested for a while. The most prominent of those features is a replaceable atomizer coil that reduces the ownership cost of the device and gives you some options for customising your vaping experience. You can use the 1.0-ohm coil if you prefer an experience similar to that of the original Caliburn, or you can install the 0.8-ohm mesh coil for bolder flavours and bigger vapour clouds. The Uwell Calburn G also features a modernised design with a gently curved aluminium chassis and USB-C fast charging support. The Caliburn G is also one of the few pod vapes on the market that supports both button-activated and puff-activated vaping.

Vaporesso Osmall: Best Pod Vape for Beginners

Vaporesso Osmall Best Pod Vapes UK

Price: £7.99 | Buy It Now

The Vaporesso Osmall is the simplest and smallest pod system on our list, making it the perfect pod vape starter kit for a new vaper. It uses draw-activated firing, so all that you need to do is puff on the device when you want to vape – and as a new vaper, you’ll love the fact that it’s designed to deliver the best possible experience when used with higher-nicotine e-liquids. You’ll get the tight airflow characteristics and the assertive throat hit that you’re accustomed to from smoking – and with the Vaporesso Osmall’s extremely low price tag, it’s the perfect vape kit to buy if you want to ease yourself into vaping before committing to a more expensive device.

The Vaporesso Osmall has a built-in 350 mAh battery that charges via micro-USB, and the device is regulated to operate at a constant power delivery of 11 watts. When you remove the pod from the device, you’ll find the filling port on the side. Simply lift the silicone cover with your finger, add e-liquid until the pod is nearly full and allow the pod to stand for several minutes to become completely saturated. Drop the pod into the device and puff to vape. When the pod’s flavour quality begins to decline, you’ll throw the pod away and switch to another one. You won’t find a better introduction to vaping anywhere.

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