While many of us are longing for a super stoney vacation this year, nobody wants to end up on an episode of Locked Up Abroad, or find themselves having to return to some ill-fated destination in Anywhere, USA for a court date. The following recommendations for traveling with (or without) Cannabis are purely anecdotal and not meant as legal advice. Always remember to be safe and follow the rules wherever you may travel.
Know Before You Go
Familiarizing yourself with the laws of your destination is an absolute must. Depending on where you are going, Cannabis can be completely legal, somewhat legal or entirely illegal – especially if you are traveling internationally. And the places that do offer legal weed in some form, often have confusing laws and policies surrounding the purchase and consumption. Always do your research before packing anything that could potentially lead to trouble. If in doubt … throw it out.
Never Buy Illegally (Especially Overseas)
While this might seem like obvious advice, there’s almost nothing worse than being out of weed on a vacay … and it can lead you to do irrational things. What is worse, though? Getting robbed or busted for buying weed illegally. Chances are the guy offering you a “drug” hookup is just as shady as the street vendor selling “authentic” Rolex watches and “licensed” Gucci gear. Avoid the trouble (and the best case mids scenario) and wait to bake until you get home.
Don’t Spark in the National Park
While there’s not much better than getting high in the great outdoors, think twice before you spark up in a park run by state or federal government. National parks are federal property regardless of the state they’re located in, so state Cannabis laws don’t apply there. You can get serious fines and real time for being caught with weed in a national park. The penalties in a state park can vary – unless you’re in California, where smoking in state parks and on beaches is permitted.
Pot Thoughts on TSA
Going through TSA is painful, but it’s worth being smart so you can get your buzz on when you land.
Generally, checked luggage and carry-ons are only screened at your point of departure – so if weed is legal where you fly out from, you shouldn’t have a problem getting your bag where you land. This is not the case for international flights, so don’t risk it. We recommend putting anything sensitive in your checked bag and to only take what you plan to consume.
And don’t forget: Never smoke or vape on a plane (there is one Leaf team member I’m thinking fondly of as I write this). Also remember that eating edibles before a flight might seem like a good idea, but it can be just as bad as taking a hit of LSD if that 100mg nano-emulsified beverage hits a little harder than expected.
Ripped is for Ridesharing
My advice regarding weed and cars is simple: Never drive high and don’t smoke while driving. As a general rule whenever I rent a car on vacation, I always get the walk-away (full coverage) insurance. I won’t risk driving in a new place without it, and I certainly wouldn’t add weed to the already stressful mix. So if you plan to party, take a rideshare and be aware of your surroundings. Driving in a new city statistically increases your odds of an accident, so don’t make it worse by being impaired.
Stoners & Scooters Don’t Always Mix
While this writer once had an epic group scootering experience while on a lemon-tech dose of psilocybin in Denver (great street graffiti, highly recommended), it’s important to remember that anything with wheels can lead to a DUI. This is more of a concern for happy hour drinkers bar-hopping on scooters, but be careful if you rent something – especially if it has an electric motor and you don’t know your way around town.