Weed, marijuana, cannabis, pot, grass, ganja, dope, mary jane, hash: whatever you call it, we’re talking about that good stuff. Cannabis been used medicinally for thousands of years, but politics in the 20th century led to the criminalization of weed around the world. Lucky for us, in 2023, that legal status is quickly changing.
As countries move toward legalization, the cannabis industry is blowing up. Weed dispensaries, weed festivals, weed clubs, weed trips, weed hotels— the options for getting lit when you travel are pretty much endless.
While more and more folks are getting their hands on the good green, the rules, regulations and laws remain super hazy. Can you travel with weed? Across state lines? On a plane? How do you purchase it legally? What are the best places for weed vacations? Are there weed…parties???
To help answer all of your questions (and more), here’s our complete guide to cannabis travel around the globe in 2023.
2023 Guide to Cannabis Travel
Where is Weed Legal?
In 2018, Canada made headlines when they became the second country in the world after Uruguay to fully legalize and regulate marijuana nationwide.
Wondering if weed is legal in your country or state? Here’s the scoop on the legalization of cannabis around the world (updated December 2021):
Weed Legalization Map By State
Legalized: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, D.C., Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.
Medical & Decriminalized: Delaware, Hawaii, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Hampshire, North Dakota, and Ohio
Medical: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia (CBD oil only), Indiana (CBD oil only), Iowa (CBD oil only), Kentucky (CBD oil only), Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee (CBD oil only), Texas (CBD oil only), Utah, West Virginia, and Wisconsin (CBD oil only).
Decriminalized: Nebraska, North Carolina
Illegal: Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, South Carolina, and Wyoming
For up-to-date info, view this map of weed legalization by state.
Weed Legalization Map By Country
Legalized: Uruguay, Georgia, South Africa, Canada, Mexico, Malta, and Thailand.
Illegal (but often unenforced): Bangladesh, Cambodia, Egypt, Finland, India, Iran, Laos, Lesotho, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Poland
Medical & Decriminalized: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bermuda, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland
Medical: Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, South Korea, Lithuania, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Norway, Philippines, Romania, San Marino, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, United Kingdom, Vanuatu, Zimbabwe
Decriminalized: Antigua and Barbuda, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Moldova, Saint Kitts and Nevis,
Illegal: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Benin, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic Chad, People’s Republic of China, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Cuba, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, East Timor, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Greenland, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, Kosovo, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Macau, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Micronesia, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Mozambique, Nambia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Syria, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Togo, Tonga, Trinadad and Tobago, Tunisia Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uzbekistan, Vatican City, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia
For up-to-date info, view this map of weed legalization by country.
Can You Fly With Weed?
Now that we’ve figured out the the world’s best weed-friendly countries and states (and where to buy it safely), one question remains: can you fly with weed? The answer is…it’s complicated.
Even if you’re in a state or country where cannabis is legal, the moment you walk into an airport, you are officially in federal jurisdiction territory. For example, if you purchase cannabis and are flying out of a 420-friendly state, like Colorado, you’re technically still breaking the law because cannabis is illegal on a federal level and strictly prohibited on all federal property in the United States.
Still confused? Here are a few questions (and answers!) on what you should expect before flying with weed.
Can You Bring a Vape Pen on a Plane?
Yes, you can bring a vape pen on a plane, but only in your carry-on. The Transportation Security Administration states that “The FAA prohibits these devices in checked bags. Battery-powered E-cigarettes, vaporizers, vape pens, atomizers, and electronic nicotine delivery systems may only be carried in the aircraft cabin (in carry-on baggage or on your person). Check with your airline for additional restrictions. Remove all electronic cigarette and vaping devices from carry-on bags if checked at the gate or planeside.”
While there’s no specification on the TSA website about whether marijuana vape pens fall under this policy, vape pens and marijuana vape pens are indistinguishable. When traveling with any type of cannabis product, use common sense and keep your products concealed for the duration of your trip. The use of vape pens and marijuana or otherwise is obviously forbidden on the plane and will result in passenger arrest.
Can You Fly with Medical Marijuana?
Yes, generally, you can fly with medical marijuana in both your carry-on and checked bags in the US— with some restrictions. Marijuana and some cannabis-infused products (CBD oil), are still illegal under federal law unless the products contain no more than 0.3 percent THC. If caught with more, TSA is well within its rights to report violations to local, state or federal authorities.
To ensure you do not run into any trouble, travel with your medical marijuana card, pack your weed in airtight containers to contain the odor, and only fly with small amounts of weed that won’t attract attention.
Is It Legal To Fly With Recreational Weed?
Is it possible? Yes! Is it legal? Nope. However, many recreational marijuana users feel comfortable flying with small amounts of weed. They, of course, follow a few simple steps to ensure to avoid any trouble.
As previously mentioned, when traveling with weed and weed products, always place them in your carry-on, not your checked baggage. Checked bags are regularly searched at random, so your best bet at avoiding unwanted attention is to pack your weed in your carry-on in a nondescript, airtight container. Pill bottles are great for joints and small amounts of cannabis.
If you plan on flying with weed, keep in mind that you are breaking the law. If you’re flying with a large amount of weed and you are caught, you will likely be charged with the intent to distribute, which is a serious offense, so only fly with small amounts.
Should You Fly With Edibles?
While still illegal if purchased for recreational use, if you want to get on a plane with weed, flying with edibles may be the easiest way to go. Store all edibles in your carry-on and remove all of the original packaging for the best chance of making it through TSA safely.
Can you fly with delta-8 and other federally legal cannabinoids?
The popularity of legal cannabinoids has experienced significant growth in the US in recent years. Under the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp products were federally legalized in the US, including Delta-8 THC which provides some of the same psychoactive and medicinal benefits. It is totally legal to fly with these products as long as they contain less than 0.3% delta-9 THC. Keep them in their original packaging and you should be good to go.
What Happens If You Get Caught With Weed at the Airport?
According to TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein when speaking to the Wall Street Journal, “If a TSA officer comes across [pot] while they’re conducting a bag check, they are obligated to report it to the police, and then it’s up to the police how they want to handle it.” The severity of your punishment will depend on three factors: the amount of weed you’re traveling with, your location, and the officer’s mood. Farbstein goes on to say, “It’s up to the officers to make those sorts of decisions.” If you’re flying with small amounts of weed in a legal state, you’ll likely be waived through, asked to put your weed in an amnesty box, or simply have your weed confiscated and thrown out.
Remember, it is still a risk and getting arrested is always a possible outcome. Flying with any amount of marijuana over what is considered “a small amount” is asking for trouble, even in 420-friendly states.
How Do You Bring Weed On a Plane?
Okay, so you understand the risks. Now what? Use common sense and only travel with a small amount. When packing, remember to only pack marijuana products in your carry-on bag. It’s vital to use an airtight container to hold your weed, edibles, and pre-rolled joints. If your container is not airtight, the easily identifiable smell will not be contained and you’ll probably get caught. Ziplock bags, pill bottles, and marijuana-specific stash devices are ideal containers for flying with marijuana.
Can you Travel with Weed Across State Lines?
Generally speaking, traveling with weed across state lines is not a good idea. So, leaving Colorado after a mountain vacation with weed in tow could have severe consequences. Unlike TSA agents, cops do prioritize finding weed. Additionally, cops tend to pull over travelers as they cross state lines. If a cop claims they smell marijuana, they probably have cause to search your vehicle. If you do plan on crossing state lines with marijuana, keep your weed in an airtight container and store it in your locked glove compartment where a cop would need a warrant to search.
Should You Travel With Cannabis When Visiting Different Countries?
Marijuana tourism isn’t just an American phenomenon. Weed legalization has spread rapidly across the globe. While stoners have been traveling to Amsterdam to sample the Dutch café culture for decades, countries like Canada and Argentina have recently legalized recreational marijuana. Still, countries with legalized recreational marijuana forbid crossing borders with the drug. So, not only can you not pack your favorite space cakes and pre-rolls in your suitcase after your trip, but you can’t bring any weed into the country either.
Everything You Need to Know About Dispensaries
In 1970’s Amsterdam, you could walk into a “coffeeshop,” lay down a few guilders, and walk away with legal cannabis and paraphernalia without a worry. It took the rest of the world a few years to catch up, but today, dispensaries — or weed shops—are popping up like crazy around the world.
Medical dispensaries provide patients with a secure location purchase medically prescribed cannabis to sooth and treat ailments. They’re usually regulated and taxed differently than recreational cannabis dispensaries, so prices may very between the two. Before visiting a medical dispensary, you’ll need:
- A prescription from your doctor, medical cannabis certification, or whatever else is required by your state.
- A valid, unexpired ID or passport (in most cases, you must be 18 or older to obtain medical cannabis in the US)
Unlike medical dispensaries, recreational dispensaries are available for people without a prescription from a doctor. Adult-use/recreational shops require fewer prerequisites than a medical dispensary, but there are still plenty of things you need to know before visiting. Before visiting a recreational dispensary, you’ll need:
- A valid, unexpired ID or passport (you must be 21 or older to purchase recreational cannabis in the US.
Weed and a good night’s sleep is pretty much synonymous. It may be illegal to smoke inside most public spaces around the world, but hotels, hostels and resorts have found plenty of ways to skirt the law in favor of a good time. From mini-bars filled with edibles at The Standard in LA to weed welcome kits at the Jupiter in Portland and wake-n-bake samplers every morning at Adagio in Denver, 420 resorts and hotels are popping up all over the place.
Cannabis-centric websites like Bud and Breakfast and USA Weed offer databases of listings for 420-friendly accommodations around the world. These sites allow travelers to search for hotels, hostels, and resorts that offer cannabis-friendly amenities and ensure that their stay is a comfortable and enjoyable one.
In addition to offering cannabis-friendly amenities, many 420-friendly hotels also provide information on local dispensaries, cannabis tours, and other cannabis-related activities in the area. Some hotels even offer cannabis-infused spa treatments or other wellness experiences.
When it comes down to it, 420-friendly hotels provide a unique and comfortable option for cannabis enthusiasts looking for a place to stay that accommodates their lifestyle. With the growing acceptance of cannabis around the world, it is likely that we will see more of these hotels popping up, offering an increasingly diverse range of cannabis-friendly amenities and experiences.
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Cannabis Cafes & Clubs
If you’ve been to Europe, you’ve definitely heard of weed cafes. But what about cannabis clubs?
The first cannabis club popped up in Barcelona in 2001 as a way to legally obtain and consume weed in the city. While recreational weed is still illegal in Spain, clubs are able to exist on a technicality: Consumption and cultivation by adults in a private space is totally legal. This legal loophole has allowed cannabis clubs to exist and thrive in Spain for the last two decades.
Cannabis clubs are membership-based establishments that operate much like a dispensary. Members pay a fee to access the club, and then they’re able to purchase and consume cannabis on the premises. These clubs are typically designed to provide a safe and comfortable space for cannabis users to consume their preferred strains of cannabis without fear of legal repercussions.
Cannabis clubs typically require members to be at least 18 years old and to provide identification when joining. Members are also expected to abide by certain rules, such as not sharing cannabis with non-members and not selling cannabis to others. Most clubs also have a maximum amount of cannabis that members can purchase and consume in a single visit.
In addition to providing a safe and legal space for cannabis consumption, cannabis clubs can also offer a social aspect for members. Many clubs organize events and activities for members, such as live music performances, educational workshops, and cannabis tastings.
While cannabis clubs are not legal in all parts of the world, they have become increasingly popular in many European countries, and are beginning to gain traction in North America as well. As more and more countries legalize cannabis, it is likely that cannabis clubs will become more widespread, providing cannabis users with a safe and legal way to enjoy their preferred strains in a social setting.
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Cannabis & CBD Spas
We get it, you love weed. But do you love it enough to let a stranger rub it all over your body?
Cannabis spas are another emerging trend in the cannabis industry, offering a unique way for cannabis enthusiasts to relax and unwind. These spas typically offer a range of cannabis-infused treatments and therapies, including massages, facials, and body wraps.
Cannabis spas have their roots in ancient cultures, where cannabis was used for medicinal and therapeutic purposes. Today, cannabis spas have been modernized, incorporating the latest technologies and techniques to provide a luxurious and immersive experience for guests.
At a cannabis spa, guests can expect to be greeted by a peaceful and relaxing environment, with soothing music, comfortable seating, and aromatherapy scents. Before any treatments begin, guests are usually required to fill out a medical questionnaire and provide identification to confirm their age.
The treatments at a cannabis spa are typically infused with cannabis or CBD, which are known to have calming and anti-inflammatory properties. These treatments can range from a simple foot massage to a full-body wrap, with cannabis-infused products like oils, lotions, and balms.
One of the most popular treatments at cannabis spas is the cannabis-infused massage, which involves the use of cannabis-infused oils to soothe sore muscles and promote relaxation. Cannabis facials are also gaining popularity, as they can help to reduce inflammation and improve skin health.
While cannabis spas are still relatively new, they have quickly become a popular destination for cannabis enthusiasts and those looking for a unique spa experience. As cannabis continues to become more widely accepted, it is likely that we will see more cannabis spas opening up around the world, providing a new way for people to enjoy the benefits of this versatile plant.
420 Tours and Weed Vacations
As cannabis legalization continues to spread across the globe, a new type of seeker is emerging: cannabis travelers, or people who look for cannabis-friendly destinations for some much-needed R&R (without giving up the green).
420 tours and weed vacations are in high-demand among cannabis enthusiasts who want to explore the world of cannabis and its culture. These tours and vacations provide a unique and immersive experience for travelers who want to learn more about the plant and its uses, while also enjoying the local sights and activities.
420 tours are typically guided tours that take visitors to different cannabis-related destinations, like dispensaries, grow facilities, and cannabis cafes. These tours can be found in many places around the world where cannabis is legal, including Amsterdam, Colorado, and California.
On a 420 tour, visitors can expect to learn about the history of cannabis, its various strains, and the different methods of consumption. They can also see first-hand how cannabis is grown and processed, and even try some samples themselves. Many 420 tours also include visits to local attractions and cultural landmarks, allowing visitors to fully immerse themselves in the local culture.
Weed vacations, on the other hand, are more like traditional vacations, but with a cannabis twist. These vacations are designed to provide cannabis enthusiasts with a relaxing and enjoyable experience, while also offering the opportunity to learn more about the plant and its culture.
Weed vacations can take many forms, from beachside retreats to mountain getaways, and can include activities such as cannabis cooking classes, cannabis yoga, and cannabis-infused spa treatments. These vacations can also provide opportunities to explore local attractions and activities, such as hiking, skiing, and sightseeing.
Both 420 tours and weed vacations offer a unique and immersive experience for cannabis enthusiasts who want to learn more about the plant and its culture. As cannabis becomes more widely accepted around the world, it is likely that we will see more of these tours and vacations popping up, providing travelers with a new and exciting way to explore the world of cannabis.
420 events and festivals are generally a good time, but believe it or not, they also help break stigmas and pave the way for legalization around the world. Festival organizers pull off throwing events in states and countries where cannabis is still illegal via the Temporary Autonomous Zone principle—creating temporary spaces that elude formal structures of control.
Today, 420 festivals can take many forms, from outdoor concerts to cannabis expos, and are typically held on or around April 20th, which is considered a holiday among cannabis enthusiasts.
420 festivals provide a unique opportunity for cannabis enthusiasts to come together and celebrate their love for the plant. These events often feature live music, food and drink vendors, cannabis dispensaries, and educational seminars and workshops.
One of the most famous 420 festivals is the annual “Sweetwater 420 Fest” held in Atlanta, Georgia. This festival features three days of live music, art exhibits, and cannabis-related vendors and attractions.
Other popular 420 festivals and events include the High Times Cannabis Cup, which is held in various locations around the world and features a competition for the best cannabis strains and products, as well as the Hash Bash in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which has been held annually since 1972 and is one of the longest-running cannabis events in the world.
420 festivals and events also provide an opportunity for cannabis advocates to come together and push for the legalization of cannabis. Many events feature speakers and activists who share their knowledge and experiences with the crowd, and use the event as a platform to raise awareness and advocate for cannabis reform.
Overall, 420 festivals and events are a fun and exciting way for cannabis enthusiasts to come together and celebrate their love for the plant. As cannabis continues to become more widely accepted around the world, it is likely that we will see more of these events popping up, providing a platform for cannabis culture to thrive and grow.