Is smoking allowed in restaurants in Georgia?
In general, no, smoking is not allowed in Georgia restaurants due to a statewide smoking ban.
However, you will find some earlier state laws still in effect that allow it in some limited places. Smoking is allowed in some sports bars, depending on the city.
This article may help:
I think the smoking is only allowed within Atlanta city limits proper and not in rest of metro Atlanta. The way the law reads, the restaurant/club owners had to decide if they wanted to run "family establishments" or "adult only". The adult only establishments can allow smoking.
One of the strangest smoking bans I ever saw was in California several years back. We met a friend for drinks and dinner at a restaurant at the marina between Long Beach and Seal Beach. The restaurant had large decks overlooking the marina, so that's where we decided to sit. I still smoked at the time and although we were the only ones on the deck, when I lit a cigarette, you would have thought I committed a felony. The anti-smoking gestapo was on me in a heartbeat and they told me that I had to put out my cigarette, immediately. They said if I wanted to smoke, I had to go inside the restaurant. That never made any sense to me.
I was curious too about how the law works so I found this Atlanta Journal Constitution article, dated 6/24/05. I'm still not clear on how the law works after reading the article but maybe it will help you.
"The state law that goes into effect next Friday allows restaurants and bars to let customers light up as long as they are 18 or older and the business does not employ minors. The ban covers all government buildings, indoor places of employment and most businesses.
There are some exceptions. For example, both kids and smokers can be served at restaurants outfitted with outdoor patios or with smoke-removing ventilation systems."
Here is the Georgia Restaurant Association website with a more thorough explanation of the law.
Any restaurants we have been to do not allow smoking and there is no smoking in gas stations, etc. I was told that anywhere that anyone 18 years and younger was allowed that there was no smoking. So, you wil not be allowed to light up in your typical Applebees, Ruby Tuesdays, Chilis, Fridays, type places.