Sas and DGBunk have said it well. We'll shortly be cruising in balcony category - Smokers, we intend to use our balcony and smoke if we wish in designated smoking areas. Can't see how balcony smoking can easily affect the neighours ........unless,,,,,,, you're standing at the rail and ash etc. blows in their direction.
Cigars and cigarettes are different. I personally enjoy the aroma of a good cigar.
It is of course important to dispose of butts in a good ashtray on the balcony - it would annoy me greatly if somone elses butt landed on my balcony!
In my opinion HAL ships provide quite adequate non-smoking area. That the dining rooms are all smoke free is a great improvement - have never had much patience with folks who can't get through a meal without lighting up.
On our last cruise I came out of the cabin one night and hesitated for a moment with the door partly open - a non-smoker as it turned out (probably reformed) was passing by - she screwed up her face and said "YOU SMOKE!" "Yes" I replied, "does it bother you? " "It's disgusting!" was her reply. "Which cabin are you in?" I asked, thinking she was next door or across the hall maybe. Her reply, with a 'hrmph'... "I'm not on this deck but it would bother me if I was."
Rightly or wrongly, we don't ask permission to smoke on our balcony and have never been complained about.