Everything You Should Consider When Traveling with Weed in the U.S.
Whether you’re embarking on a hazy journey to a state where adult-use cannabis is legal, or trying to decipher the marijuana laws of interstate travel, knowing the ins and outs that come with traveling with weed can be the difference maker between a trip to paradise and a vacation nightmare.
When considering whether you’ll be flying with edibles, riding a bus with a vape pen, or driving with weed, the way to make the safest choice is by doing substantive research. Even for cannabis tourists flocking to states with well-established medical or adult-use (aka “recreational”) markets, there are still plenty of ways that an ill-informed decision can damper your pot pilgrimage.
Each aspect of your travel plan will affect your approach to flying with CBD oil, vaping on that cruise, or bringing an eighth on your road trip. When planning your trip, you should always consider:
- Where are you going?
- How are you getting there?
- Where are you staying?
If you’re planning on bringing weed with you, or even purchasing cannabis products once you arrive, knowing what to consider regarding the transport, storage, and consumption of your stash should be included when making your travel itinerary.
Where Are You Traveling?
Whether you’re flying, taking a train, or driving, the most important thing you need to determine is whether weed is legal in the state you’re traveling to. This doesn’t just pertain to recreational marijuana, but also the legal status of medical marijuana and hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) . For instance, some states allow out-of-state medical marijuana patients to obtain temporary licenses to purchase from dispensaries through reciprocity policies , while others don’t.
States with Adult-Use Marijuana
Take note of cannabis purchasing and possession limits — even in states with a full-fledged adult-use framework in place, the amounts will vary from state to state. Some counties and municipalities in legal states may have more restrictive regulations than others, so check the laws for each county that is along your travel route. This will help you navigate where you can buy legal cannabis and whether you can lawfully carry or consume it.
Before breaking out a vape pen, know that many hotels are smoke-free, and the bans extend to cannabis consumption, too — even in states where medical or adult-use is allowed. (Photo by Markus Spiske/Unsplash)
Keep in mind that while public consumption is typically illegal in adult-use states, you might be hard pressed to find a hotel or house rental that permits smoking weed indoors. For those planning to visit an adult-use state, consider booking a weed-friendly hotel or rental property, if possible.
States with Medical Marijuana
Even if you’re a registered medical patient in your home state, check the reprecitory laws for the state you’re visiting to know what’s legal medically, especially whether you can use your medical marijuana card to receive temporary authorization to purchase and use medical marijuana. Be sure to review the marijuana laws and regulations of the medical state you plan to visit ahead of your trip.
The requirements for obtaining a temporary medical marijuana license out of state differ by state, so don’t make any assumptions on reciprocity. Some states, such as Oklahoma , allow patients with a valid out-of-state medical marijuana card to obtain a temporary 30-day license to legally acquire medical marijuana products while visiting. Illinois , on the other hand, currently has no reciprocity law in place to accept out-of-state medical marijuana patients, so only state residents can legally purchase medical cannabis.
Give yourself ample time to scope out the medical marijuana laws ahead of the trip, as you may need to apply for a temporary medical marijuana card, a process that could take an extended amount of time to complete. Hawaii , for example, will accept applications up to 60 days ahead of your travel date and the Department of Health notes applications are reviewed in the order received and can’t be expedited.
Even if a state offers reciprocity to out-of-state patients, that doesn’t give travelers free rein to cross state lines with legally purchased medical cannabis. Since cannabis is still federally classified as a Schedule I drug, medical marijuana patients can still put themselves in a risky situation when they’re under federal jurisdiction, such as at an airport or state borders.
States that have Decriminalized Marijuana Possession
Unfortunately, there’s no lawful way for travelers to bring cannabis to a destination where possession and use is illegal, even if the state has opted to decriminalize weed, softening the consequences for possessing small amounts for personal use. Some states, such as New York and Illinois , have decriminalized cannabis, but have not yet legalized adult-use or medical marijuana. In a state where weed is decriminalized, possessing small amounts of cannabis — the amount of which depends on the specific state law — doesn’t typically result in jail or prison time, but instead carries a fine.
What’s Your Mode of Transportation?
If you plan on bringing weed along for the trip, take your mode of transportation into consideration. Are you taking a Greyhound bus through multiple states? Flying across the country? Driving in a rental car? Understanding the rules and regulations involved with each will help you make a safe and well-informed decision.
Traveling with Weed in a Car
When it comes to driving with cannabis across state lines, the language of the law is plain and simple: it’s a federal offense. Even if you’re driving between two recreational states that border one another, such as Oregon and Washington , the practice of crossing the border with weed still technically falls within the jurisdiction of the federal government.
As thousands of commuters make this type of trek each day along the West Coast, is it likely that federal agents will be saddled up at the border between two legal states waiting for unsuspecting drivers with pot in the car? Michael Cindrich, a San Diego-based marijuana attorney and founder of the Law Offices of Michael E. Cindrich APC , has never heard of a case where someone was prosecuted for bringing cannabis across the border of two legal states. He has, however, witnessed scenarios where drivers in California end up on a road that stretches across federal lands or parks, suddenly (and sometimes unwittingly) putting them under federal jurisdiction.
“Within these states sometimes you end up on a highway or road and that road happens to travel through a federal park, and before you know it you’re on federal land,” Cindrich told Weedmaps News. “You may be transporting cannabis that was legal under state law, but now you’ve found yourself in federal jurisdiction and it’s a different story.”
Once you’re driving from one city to another, all within a state that has legalized adult-use cannabis, the laws become less restrictive, though there are certain nuances to consider. While states with adult-use will typically allow drivers to travel with legal amounts of cannabis, it ultimately depends on where you’re traveling.
In California, for example, having marijuana stored in your vehicle is legal as long as you are at least 21 years old and carrying less than 1 ounce, or about 28.5 grams, of marijuana, or less than 4 grams of concentrates. What many travelers don’t know, however, is that the state also has an open-container law in place regarding cannabis. According to Health and Safety Code Section 11362.3 , which is included in Proposition 64 , it’s illegal to “possess an open container or open package of cannabis or cannabis products while driving, operating, or riding in the passenger seat or compartment of a motor vehicle, boat, vessel, aircraft, or other vehicle used for transportation.” In other words, once your tear the seal off of the cannabis package, you’re not allowed to drive around with it in the driver or passenger area of your car.
When driving with weed in the vehicle, the safest place to store cannabis products is the trunk. If law enforcement officers smell marijuana, they can conduct a field sobriety test as driving while high is both dangerous and illegal. (Photo by Jackson Douglas)
“The general advice for people would be to not possess any open containers, not bring any open containers of cannabis with you,” Cindrich said. “Under some circumstances, it’s difficult not to have an open container. If that’s the case, we’d recommend putting it in a closed container and in your trunk.”
Driving while high is both illegal and dangerous and even having the lingering smell of marijuana in your vehicle can prompt a police officer to conduct a sobriety test on you and search your vehicle.
“One of the other things that they’re looking for is the burnt smell of marijuana, because that would lead them to believe that someone had recently consumed,” Cindrich said. “If you’ve recently consumed, they might pull you out of the vehicle for a DUI evaluation, and in doing so, check your vehicle for any evidence that you recently consumed.”
Even in states like California, your experience during a traffic stop can range from county to county. Cindrich explained that in some areas of California, such as the roads leading out of the Emerald Triangle’s legendary cultivation hub , local police will be on the lookout for drivers who possibly have cannabis in the vehicle. The same goes for counties that have more restrictive cannabis laws despite statewide legalization.
“As you get to the areas that are dry and more conservative, you’re going to have police that are watching for people that may be traveling through their city or county from elsewhere, they’re going to be looking for signs that a person may be tied to cannabis or the cannabis industry,” Cindrich said. “Oftentimes, those people are more likely to be pulled over and harassed by law enforcement.”
Things can get a little more complicated when you’re cruising up the Pacific Coast or through the Rocky Mountains in a rental car. For instance, some rental car companies have a policy in place to charge you with cleaning fees if the car smells like weed upon return. According to customer service representatives at Hertz rental car at LAX, the company charges a $300 fee when a returned vehicle contains the smell of marijuana. These potential fines will vary by agency and state, so consult with your rental car company about the penalties before you decide to bring weed along for the ride.
Another unintended consequence of transporting cannabis in a rental car is that it could raise suspicion from local law enforcement, especially if the vehicle has an out-of-state license plate.
“I think rental cars can accelerate a normal traffic situation into something where the police are looking for further evidence of illegal activity,” Cindrich said.
Traveling with Weed in a Plane
Thinking of flying with a vape pen? You should consider the policies of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), airport, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) before packing.
Although the Transportation Security Administration medical marijuana policy states that “TSA security officers do not search for marijuana or other illegal drugs” during a security screening, when searches are conducted for other reasons, TSA agents are required to report any suspected violations of the law, referring the matter to local law enforcement if they come across any cannabis products.
“The wild card of course is what the local law is regarding marijuana,” said David Y. Bannard, a Boston-based attorney who specializes in airport regulations and compliance. “In a state where recreational use is legal, it’s entirely likely that the local law enforcement will ask you to dispose or otherwise get rid of it before boarding the plane. If you’re in a jurisdiction where marijuana is not legal, then you may be prosecuted.”
Looking to fly with weed? Generally speaking, cannabis should not be taken through airport security or aboard airplanes. Aviation falls under federal jurisdiction, and cannabis possession is illegal. The Transportation Security Administration has clarified rules that state hemp-derived CBD products can be brought aboard aircraft, though under specific circumstances. (Photo by Erik Odiin/Unsplash)
The TSA recently changed its cannabis policy regarding hemp-derived CBD, however, stating that these products may now be carried on planes under certain circumstances.
“Products/medications that contain hemp-derived CBD or are approved by the FDA are legal as long as it is produced within the regulations defined by the law under the Agriculture Improvement Act 2018,” a section states. This should apply to flying with oil cartridges for vaporizers, as long as the oil is hemp-derived.
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) has a policy in place allowing visitors to possess up to about 1 ounce, or 28.5 grams, of flower or 8 grams of concentrates at the airport. However, the policy doesn’t cover you once you board the airplane, which falls under the jurisdiction of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Even if you’re traveling from California to Washington, without ever flying over a state where marijuana is illegal, bringing cannabis on your flight is still illegal.
“The FAA pretty much has undisputed jurisdiction over federal airways,” Bannard explained. “So, even though you may be flying from Seattle to Los Angeles, over Oregon and states that have legalized marijuana, the fact that you’re in federal airways gives the FAA some jurisdiction there.”
Additionally, just because you’re in a legal state doesn’t mean you can legally set foot in an airport with weed. Marijuana possession or use is strictly prohibited at the Denver International Airport (DIA), according to the Colorado airport’s most recent passenger conduct policy . At the same time, cannabis smuggling arrests at LAX have risen by 166% in 2018, according to Los Angeles Airport Police records, as reported by the Los Angeles Times. In this case, smugglers are defined as those who tried to bring more than the legal possession limit in their checked luggage or carry-on bag.
Another common sense policy to be wary of is that travelers bringing legally purchased cannabis to an airport in a state where cannabis is illegal can be prosecuted according to state laws. “If it’s illegal in your home state, it’s illegal in your home state,” Bannard said. “Just because you’ve got it in California, transporting it from L.A. to your home state doesn’t make it legal.”
Traveling with Weed by Train, Bus, or Boat
When it comes to trains, intercity buses, and boats, it seems that the companies that offer transportation services have restrictive policies when it comes to bringing cannabis products onboard. For example, bringing cannabis is not permitted on Amtrak trains, even in legal states.
“The use or transportation of marijuana in any form for any purpose is prohibited [on Amtrak trains], even in states or countries where recreational use is legal or permitted medically,” Olivia Irvin, Public Relations Manager for Amtrak, said in a statement to Weedmaps News. This would also apply to the three Amtrak lines that stay entirely within California: the Capitol Corridor in Sacramento and the Bay Area, the Pacific Surfliner in Southern California, and the San Joaquin in Central and Northern California. It also applies to the Cascades, which services Oregon and Washington .
Many bus services have a similar policy in place, even when passengers are traveling within legal boundaries. On Greyhound buses marijuana, possession isn’t allowed, even if the entire route remains within the confines of a legal state.
Other major bus lines that operate in the U.S., such as Peter Pan, Megabus, and Flixbus, may have similar policies in place. If you plan on traveling by bus or train through a legal state, it’s best to contact the specific transportation company and ask about its cannabis policy before getting onboard with weed.
Passengers carrying cannabis would be best to avoid heeding the “All aboard” of an Amtrak conductor. The national intercity train service forbids cannabis along its railways, including state-sponsored lines on the West Coast where adult-use marijuana is legal. (Photo by Mike Petrucci/Unsplash)
Many cruise ship lines have strict policies to slap hefty fines on travelers for smoking weed onboard. Carnival Cruise Line, for example, established an amended set of rules in November 2018 that would fine passengers up to $500 for using cannabis on the ship and may even get them kicked off entirely.
“Carnival recognizes that some state and local governments in the U.S., and in the destinations we visit, might allow marijuana use. However, Carnival Cruise Line follows U.S. federal law, which strictly prohibits possession and use of recreational/medicinal marijuana and other illegal controlled substances,” the policy states.
The cruise line’s policy also states that if a passenger is disembarked for violating this policy, they’re fully responsible for all necessary expenses to return home.
“We do not allow marijuana on board our ships,” said Vance Gulliksen, Public Relations Manager for Carnival Corp.
How Should You Store Your Weed While Traveling?
If you’ve found out that you can legally bring weed with you on your trip, congratulations, now you just need to consider storage. There’s no understating the importance of containing the smell, no matter the mode of transportation or final destination. Using odor-proof containers and bags will keep any away unwanted attention and show respect for fellow travelers who might not be fond of the aroma.
You can find a variety of odor-proof storage products at your local head shop or online including discrete items such as a Smart Stash Pouch or Bomber Case . Even a Smelly Proof reusable bag will work.
Once you have your stash safely packaged in an odor-proof container or bag, the final step is deciding where to keep your weed during the trip.
When driving, a general rule is to pack your weed away in the trunk of the car. Even in a legal state such as California, having an open container of cannabis in the front area of the car can still land you into trouble.
Many hotels have a private safe to store valuable personal belongings in, and can be utilized to safely store odor-proof containers or bags. Finally, if you decide to pack some weed in your suitcase, make sure it’s properly situated in the odor-proof container.
No matter where your travels take you, it’s always smart to be discreet, safe, and responsible when taking cannabis along for the journey.
Want to avoid all the hassle and stress of transporting cannabis products? Sign up for a free account on Weedmaps to find the best dispensaries, storefronts, doctors, and deals wherever you’re traveling. For guidance on what to look for, Weedmaps Learn has you covered.
Disclaimer: Today, cannabis still remains classified as a Schedule I drug at the federal level and possessing it carries inherent risks. This is an educational guide and does not provide legal advice and should not be used as a substitute for legal counsel from a licensed attorney.
Knowing the ins and outs that come with traveling with weed can be the difference maker between a trip to paradise and a vacation nightmare.
Flight packs weed
All photos via iStock
Disclaimer: This guide is written for educational purposes only. It does not provide specific legal advice and should not be used as a substitute for competent legal counsel from a licensed attorney in your state or country.
This past week, Canada’s cannabis legalization law went into effect, permitting the production, sale, distribution and possession of recreational marijuana for all adults in the country. While freshly legal pot shops were unable to keep up with the high demand many running out of product within days, some celebrated legal weed by taking their stash to the skies. As of October 17th, any adult flying within Canada may now pack up to 30 grams of cannabis (the maximum quantity legally possessable in public) with them for the journey. No dice for any tourists hoping to take home the sweet leaf as a souvenir, though, as bringing legal cannabis outside of Canada is strictly prohibited.
This is starting to get confusing for North Americans, who are now subject to a patchwork of widely differing weed laws across the continent. While nearly the entire West Coast — from Alaska to British Columbia to Washington State, Oregon, and California (sorry, Baja) — is legally 420-friendly, you’re still technically not allowed to fly between these locales with legal pot in your luggage. Similarly, one can travel overland between Quebec, Vermont, and Massachusetts — all places where recreational cannabis is legal — but good luck doing so holding a bag of bud without Border Patrol jamming you up.
The moment of truth
This predicament may make perfect sense to lawyers and political scientists, but for humans who simply want to enjoy their herb wherever they may be, it’s a strange moment within the changing socio-legal culture around marijuana. Flying with weed is already a nerve-wracking experience, especially for medical marijuana users who require the substance for health maintenance. The uneven legalization of cannabis around the world — including the U.S., where only nine states have fully legitimized it — makes an already fraught situation even more complicated.
However, taking pot on an airplane is technically possible within the States; it just depends on where you’re coming from, where you’re heading, and how much informed legal risk you’re willing to assume. So, to break it all down with the latest rules and regulations (just in time for trips during the holiday season), here’s our guide to flying with weed in North America, starting off with legal pot hotspots, followed by general guidelines for traveling with ganja on the rest of the continent. Always remember to use common sense, and that airplanes are non-smoking regardless of the substance (don’t be this guy), and you should be able to avoid the Feds. Safe travels!
There are plenty of things you should know — whether you’re a Canadian resident or international traveler — before you board a flight with weed in the Great White North. First of all, the legal age of possession varies between provinces: for example, if you’re 18 years old in Alberta, you can legally purchase and possess cannabis, but not in, say, Manitoba. Check the local laws before you begin your travels.
Although you can travel on flights within Canada carrying cannabis (up to 30 grams) in either checked or carry-on bags, possession during international travel — including medical marijuana — is still prohibited. Discovery of cannabis while boarding an international flight may even end in your arrest.
“Upon cannabis legalization, it will remain illegal to import into Canada, or export from Canada, cannabis without a valid permit, issued by the Government of Canada,” a spokesperson for the Canada Border Services Agency tells MERRY JANE. “The unauthorized movement of cannabis across Canada’s international borders will remain a serious criminal offence, subject to enforcement up to and including criminal investigation and prosecution.”
If you’re a Canadian citizen travelling to the U.S. carrying cannabis product, you may be detained at the airport and denied entry to the U.S. upon discovery. But it doesn’t even require carrying cannabis to get held up by officials at U.S.-Canada border, regardless if you’re going by ground or air.
Toronto Pearson International Airport
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officials previously announced they may deny entry to any Canadian who admits to using legal pot or works in the legal cannabis industry (both U.S. and Canadian officials are demanding more clarity to this policy). If a marijuana conviction in Canada comes up during a traveler’s background check, Canadians can also be denied entry to the States. Officials in Ottawa have announced they plan to introduce legislation that will pardon Canadians of past pot convictions, but U.S. officials are not required to recognize such pardons, and may continue blocking cannabis-using Canucks from the U.S.
So, in summary, as long as you’re of legal age, carrying 30 grams or less, and traveling strictly within Canada’s borders, you’re free to move about the cabin with cannabis up north. Just don’t light up until you land!
The United States
Flying with pot in the U.S. is a far more puzzling prospect. Unlike in Canada, individual states have moved ahead of the federal government in pursuing cannabis reform, birthing a situation in which you can fly from Los Angeles to Seattle and buy legal weed on both ends, but still technically aren’t allowed to take any leftovers with you by plane under federal law, which bans controlled substances from U.S. airspace.
However, particular airports in canna-legal states have adopted their own policies on pot, granting some leeway to flyers who ‘forget’ to leave their flower at home. We’ll use our home base of Los Angeles, California as an example, then proceed to other major airports with explicit rules for legal reefer.
In September of this year, an update to the Los Angeles Airport’s website garnered many headlines announcing that passengers can now take a state-legal quantity of cannabis (up to 28.5 grams) through LAX security and onto their flights. Yet this wasn’t actually a new policy: while legal adult-use cannabis sales didn’t begin in California until January 2018, recreational cannabis use became legal as soon as voters passed Proposition 64 in November 2016.
Outside Los Angeles International Airport
Accordingly, L.A. airport authorities confirmed to the Boston Globe in February 2017 that if Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials discover marijuana in a passenger’s bags, they’d be referred to local airport police. Since airport cops only have the power to enforce state law, if a passenger’s holding a legal amount of pot, then LAX police will let them proceed through security to their flight.
Pretty cool, huh? If you’re late for your flight out of the City of Angels, you do risk wasting a bunch of time talking about your take-home pot with police, but policy states you’ll ultimately be let on your way. This could be more complicated if you pack your bud in checked baggage rather than your carry-on, so keep it with you. Furthermore, LAX’s policy is careful to note that “passengers should be aware that marijuana laws vary state by state and they are encouraged to check the laws of the states in which they plan to travel.”
But when was the last time you were searched getting off of a flight within the U.S.? It’s very uncommon, so even if you’re landing in a state that’s not yet hip to herb, you can probably get your weed to your final destination as long as you’re discreet about it. Don’t let your time in 420 country make you forget about the perils of prohibition…
Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts — another state which legalized recreational cannabis in 2016 — follows the same policy as LAX, meaning if you’re traveling with an ounce or less of marijuana, it’s legal under state law to have it in the terminal. If TSA discovers it, they’ll “kick [it] over to local law enforcement,” and once state police verify that you’re over 21 and have a legal quantity, “you’ll be let go in peace” to your flight, as local TSA and Massachusetts State Police spokespersons confirmed to the Boston Globe last year.
Again, the rules may be much different wherever you’re heading than in the Bay State, so be prepared to travel discreetly once you land.
While Colorado was one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana use and sales in 2014, its main airport in Denver still takes a more cautious approach to cannabis. Even after LAX’s policy got republicized last month, officials at Denver International reiterated that carrying pot on airport property is strictly prohibited under its own rules.
Passengers are supposed to discard their dank before arriving at the airport, and if police find legal amounts of any pot-based products, they ask flyers to return the items home, and if they can’t, they’re simply confiscated without consequence of criminal penalty. A Denver Airport spokesperson confirmed to the L.A. Times earlier this year that “No one has been in trouble for this. we’ve not had problems with discarded MJ. All has gone well.”
While one could possibly get less conspicuous items through Denver International, like edibles or vapes, just know that according to the airport, it’s not kosher.
Nevada legalized recreational cannabis in 2017, and it’s quickly become big business in Sin City and elsewhere in the Silver State. However because of the state’s status as a renown hub for legal gambling — and the federal gaming licenses it requires to stay operating — state and municipal authorities have resolved to stay on the Feds’ good side and keep what’s still a federally prohibited substance out of its casinos, hotels, and yes, airports (where gambling also takes place).
At McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, as well as at smaller terminals in Henderson and North Las Vegas, carrying cannabis is strictly prohibited. If pot’s discovered in your bags or on your person, local police just won’t confiscate it — they’ll cite you for the violation if it’s a legal quantity, and arrest you if it’s not. To help travelers avoid this predicament, authorities have installed green “amnesty boxes” for passengers to ditch their bud or other products outside of McCarran, its associated rental car center, and other airports in the county.
Nevada isn’t playing around, so what you smoke in Vegas should probably stay in Vegas.
The policy for pot at Portland International Airport has been the same since 2015, when Oregon legalized cannabis: passengers are allowed to carry a legal quantity of recreational marijuana onto their flight as long as they’re not heading outside of the state, and airport personnel are reportedly checking to make sure you’re in compliance. Otherwise, flyers will be asked to stash it somewhere for later retrieval, or to dump it.
Portland’s airport is also explicit about rules for medical marijuana: you’ll be let on your way with your weed as long as you have an Oregon Medical Marijuana card and are holding a legally allowable amount, though they remind travelers that they’re still subject to local laws at their destination.
The cultural capital of northern California has a legendary history with herb, but how do airport authorities at San Francisco International deal with it? An airport information officer confirmed to SF Weekly that while it’s not “official” policy, the discovery of cannabis is dealt with just the same way as it is in Los Angeles that now adult-use marijuana is fully legal in California. If TSA finds it and local police assess it’s a legal amount, you’ll be sent on your way through security with a warning about marijuana laws wherever your journey ends. Keep it under an ounce, and your grass should be good to go!
Washington State was the very first in the union to legalize recreational cannabis back in 2012, allowing possession of up to an ounce by any adult over 21. The Evergreen State’s progressive leadership on pot is reflected at its main airport, Seattle-Tacoma International, and it’s the same deal as in California, as the L.A. Times confirmed earlier this year: if you’re in compliance with local laws, airport police will let onto your flight.
Recreational reefer has been legal on the Last Frontier since 2014. While airport authorities allow licensed canna-business employees to transport marijuana products on commercial airlines (as it’s sometimes the only viable way to distribute legal weed in the state’s unforgiving climate), MERRY JANE could not confirm with airport officials or through other reporting whether passengers are permitted to bring grass onto terminal grounds.
Maine and Vermont
Recreational cannabis use is legal in these New England states, but MERRY JANE couldn’t confirm pot policies at airports in either locale. You wouldn’t be able to easily find legal weed in stores in either state anyway — the actual sale of adult-use marijuana is still prohibited in Vermont, and legal cannabis sales aren’t due to start in Maine until spring of 2019 at earliest.
Until then, as a TSA spokesperson told MERRY JANE, “. if during the security screening process a TSA officer discovers an item that may violate the law, TSA refers the matter to law enforcement. Law enforcement officials will determine whether to initiate a criminal investigation or what steps – if any – will be taken.”
The worst part of flying
So if you’re departing from a state that doesn’t allow medical or recreational possession, prohibition law and its harsh penalties fully apply. This is especially important to remember if you’re flying back to a canna-legal state from an airport where marijuana is still prohibited — taking any leftover bud back with you could land you in the clink instead of safe and sound at home.
While you may have heard that Mexico legalized medical marijuana last year, it’s still not liberalized enough to the point that they’ll recognize an international traveler’s cannabis-based medication, unfortunately. While this seemingly isn’t stopping many Mexicans from taking legal Cali kush home with them, there could still be a big price to pay if you’re caught. Better safe than sorry, we say — get your mota south of the border.
When Will This Become Simpler?
It’s getting easier to take legal cannabis on airplanes — just don’t try to smoke it!