‘Pass the Blunt’ is a new content series where we give members of the cannabis culture to share their high-deas on the canna-community.
This week we passed the blunt to Jackie Bryant a journalist and social media personality committed to reducing the stigma of cannabis use, educating the public on all aspects of the industry from social justice issues to product reviews and providing an eye into modern cannabis culture for both users and non-users, alike.
Bringing a Higher Perspective to Canna-Friendly Traveling
As cannabis use becomes both more legally recognized and socially acceptable, it’s inevitable that it becomes a cornerstone of peoples’ travel itineraries. First of all, dyed-in-the-wool stoners are simply no longer willing to go without access to herb in this day and age. And, secondly, those without access to legal or quality cannabis know there’s a whole other world out there. In increasing numbers, they are becoming more and more willing to venture out and find it, too.
I’m a journalist on both the travel and cannabis beats, so I’m seeing cannabis travel trends evolve in real-time. One of the biggest questions on my mind these days when researching stories is, ‘Can cannabis enthusiasts travel in a way that keeps them safe and lifted at the same time?’ The answer is, “Absolutely!” but in a world with ever-changing and murky regulations, doing so requires the same discretion and finesse that many users are already used to.
The first question curious travelers usually ask me is a simple one: how does one fly with weed?
I’ve written about it before in my weekly cannabis column, called Cannabitch, for San Diego CityBeat. As always, I provide the caveat that I’m a white woman who likely benefits from privilege in these situations.
But the long and short of it is that TSA doesn’t really care whether or not people are carrying cannabis, especially in states with recreationally legalized use. They’re looking for weapons, explosives and other things that can actually harm people. This was something I confirmed while researching my article and was further amplified by a TSA agent from South Dakota who decided to write to me after reading my piece.
It boils down to this: it is not legal to fly with any cannabis products, period.
For those willing to risk it, vape pens and edibles are safe to fly to many destinations. Flower and concentrates, less so, but if you’re flying from a state where it’s recreationally legal, it’s probably okay. Just pack the goods in a carry-on.
Once the goods have been purchased and/or transported, though, another question emerges. Where and how to smoke it? This may seem obvious, but would-be travelers must do research on the up-to-date laws and customs of the destinations they are visiting since regulations regarding cannabis are constantly changing and vary widely from country to country, state to state and even town to town, in many cases.
At present, most destinations don’t have a legal way for those who purchase cannabis to actually consume it, especially if people decide to smoke it. Hotels are exceptionally unfriendly to cannabis use, especially large chains that tend to host families and business functions. Many state regulations include some provision that smoking is not allowed to take place outside a private home, meaning that bars and restaurants are also off-limits.
Going with the Flow While You’re On the Go
One of my favorite things about the cannabis industry is its incredible ability to quickly adapt and innovate–no doubt a side-effect of having had to operate in the shadows for so long. My latest favorite cannabis travel trend is the emergence of 420-friendly Airbnbs and other vacation rentals, which have really taken off in the wake of recreationally legal cannabis legislation.
I’ve been lucky enough to sample a few, which have a variety of amenities including (but in no way limited to) CBD massages, personal chefs cooking infused food, flower and oil packages and plenty more. Not only are these operations legal, considering they take place in private homes, but they also always allow indoor and outdoor consumption, come with exceptionally friendly hosts and, in the case of a recent 420 Airbnb I stayed at in Los Alamos, California–there is also an on-site, adjacent consumption lounge and coffee bar.
At this stage in legalization, my advice to enthusiasts who don’t want to travel without is to seek destinations that are friendly to cannabis use.
That way, it’s easier and safer to transport, purchase and consume bud. Barcelona, with its myriad array of smoking clubs that are easy to get into, is one great choice. Uruguay and Canada, to name just two, are countries that have full legalization across the board. And in the United States, places like Washington, Colorado, Oregon, Alaska and California are moving full-speed ahead with introducing consumption lounges, traveler-oriented products (like 25-hit vape pens designed for a weekend’s use) and other strategies for bringing cannabis users into the mainstream.
Honestly, it’s a truly fascinating and exciting time to be part of both the travel and cannabis industries. My prediction is that cannabis use is going to be both a major amenity and market decider in the years to come–especially in the luxury travel space. For now, though, we still have to be a little bit sneaky. I’ll always be here to help!