There are less smokers now than there were a decade ago. (Photo / Stock Xchng)

Quitline’s readying for calls from people whose New Year’s resolution is to kick the smoking habit.

The price of tobacco, which goes up another 10 per cent today, combined with New Year resolutions is expected to create a surge in quitters.

Quitline is expecting an influx of callers and website hits over the next few days, and is bolstering staff numbers to be ready.

CEO Andrew Slater said they’re expecting around 250 calls today, with that number set to increase as the week progresses.

“We see less on the first but certainly we will be expecting 400 calls a day on the second, third and forth of January.”

Slater said Christmas and New Year can be particularly hard for smokers who are wanting to quit, because it can be a stressful and social time.

However, people looking to quit will be part of a trend as rates have been dropping steadily.

Slater said this year the rate of 15-to-17 years olds smoking fell from 12,000 to 8,000.

“So you know, 4,000 less 15 to 17 year olds smoking in 2017 compared to 2016, I think that’s great progress.”

Slater said just a decade ago, 35,000 teenagers aged 15-to-17 were smokers.

Source: Newstalk ZB


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