In RYOT’s opinion, you have a right to light anywhere and at any time, but the United States government doesn’t always see eye to eye with us on these kinds of issues.
While the 21st century has brought huge reforms to drug policy that allow patients across the country to access drugs like cannabis, ketamine, and MDMA, these substances are still highly regulated by the federal government, even in states with complete legalization. This puts patients in a difficult position as they try to understand their right to use their medicine while traveling across the country.
A joint might be legal in Colorado, but crossing the border into Utah suddenly puts you at risk of jail time. Does that mean patients aren’t allowed to travel? Not necessarily, but there are some important steps to take before crossing any borders.
Do your research.
Does the state you’re traveling to allow for recreational or medical marijuana? Do they require users to carry a prescription, medical card, or other paperwork with them? Is there a limit to where patients can smoke? Is there a limit to how much one patient can carry? These kinds of questions are essential to consider, particularly if you like to keep large amounts with you. Many states put strict limits on how much weed a patient can own, and you don’t want to get slapped with a fine or misdemeanor over an extra gram or two.
How will you be traveling?
Individual states can be pretty cool in regards to sparking one up, but the feds are still definitely not cool, as any of the individuals serving long prison time for simple possession can tell you. Because air travel is still a federally regulated activity, we do not recommend flying with marijuana. Though RYOT does make some of the finest smell-proof bags, backpacks, and containers, it’s probably not a smart bet to hope that the TSA won’t find your loud pack. Jail tends to ruin most vacations.
Instead of trying to smuggle your supply to your destination, try to find a destination that will allow you dispensary privileges. Many states have provisions for out-of-state travelers to access their medication while visiting; calling a dispensary in your destination can be a good way to investigate how to prepare the appropriate paperwork ahead of time. You can also plan your vacations around destinations with easy access to weed, though that’s a pretty limited set of destinations.
Avoid unwanted attention.
The best way to smoke while traveling is in an out-of-the-way corner, without anyone watching. Many states, counties, and cities have ordinances on where cannabis can be consumed. Some may allow smoking in all outdoor spaces, while others may prohibit smoking in certain areas of the city, and others may limit smoking entirely to an individual’s residence. The best strategy is to obey whatever local ordinances apply.
Additionally, you may be unfamiliar with local attitudes toward marijuana use. While weed is widely accepted on the west coast, sparking up in a rural midwestern town may lead to some glares. It may be best to avoid unwanted attention by smoking with a cigarette one hitter or an inconspicuous herb vape until you know the lay of the land.
What are you smoking?
It’s also important to be aware that not all weed products are equal in the eyes of the law. Some states may allow for the use of flower, but concentrated products like wax and shatter can remain illegal, with stiff penalties for those kinds of products. Similarly, you may be allowed to use edibles in some environments, but smoking is still prohibited. Be careful not to assume that whatever products you’re bringing will be allowed.
Additionally, traveling with plants is almost never a good idea, as the regulations surrounding live plants are highly variable and depend on the size, number of plants, and whether or not the individual in possession of them is a registered grower. Even if you are permitted to possess ounces of weed, one plant may still put you at risk.
How do I exercise my right to medication?
Ultimately, you should treat marijuana like any other prescribed medication. Consult with your doctor and health department about the applicable laws that you may need to be aware of while traveling. You should also avoid sharing your prescription with others. Maintaining your medical right to cannabis is a matter of staying informed and respecting local laws. If a legal problem presents itself, remain calm and cooperate to the best of your ability.
One great way to avoid trouble is by staying stealthy about your cannabis use, whether legal or not. RYOT’s carbon-lined, smell-proof bags and backpacks are a great way to walk around the city with a full stash and a completely inconspicuous way to carry it. Not only does it keep your stash safe, but the smell-proof seal locks in the delicate flavors and aromas of your weed. These stash bags are a great way to keep weed for long-term storage and are easy to grab on the go. They come in all shapes, sizes, and styles because RYOT’s products are designed by and for all sorts of smokers.
Amid progressing cannabis, ketamine, and MDMA legalization in the US, medical marijuana users face federal regulations despite state legality. Navigating these complexities demands insight. Research destination laws, adopt discreet practices, and understand product legality. Treat medical marijuana as a prescribed medicine, ensuring informed, respectful travel experiences in this evolving landscape.