So you’re headed up North. Maybe it’s a visit to Toronto to explore Canada’s largest city and its extremely diverse culture. Maybe it’s to British Columbia with plans to kayak off Vancouver and then spend a few days mountain biking at Whistler. Either way, you’re looking forward to the escape and the thrill of being outside the United States without the pain of extremely draining travel. You’ve also heard that cannabis in Canada is headed for legalization and that peaks your interest during your vacation.

You and your vacation crew like to smoke a little here and there and Canada’s legal Marijuana scene is something you’re looking forward to. Whether it’s with a penthouse view over a city skyline or a sunset over miles and miles of pine trees, a little marijuana at the end of the day sounds like a nice way to round out hours of exploring.

By karen roach

There’s just one hold up. You’re not quite sure how it works up there. Where do you buy? Where can you smoke? What kind of situations will have the Mounties after you? To ensure you don’t get into any trouble, we’ve done a little digging on marijuana in Canada and the upcoming legalization.

Current Legal Status  

As in many U.S. states, cannabis in Canada is legal for medicinal purposes only. Essentially, the current legal structure around cannabis isn’t all that different than that in America — people with specific medical conditions and prescriptions usually receive packages in the mail from medical marijuana distribution centers that grow their product in large, monitored warehouses. These companies are run just like any other business that manufactures products and then exports them to clients.

By nisargmediaproductions

You won’t however, see the plethora of dispensaries that one can find in California or Colorado. That part of the marijuana world isn’t fully legal in Canada, and is only tolerated in some areas.

The Future and Legalization

While the current marijuana scene doesn’t look all that different than in the U.S., a major change is coming. This October 2018, Canada’s federal government will legalize marijuana, becoming just the second country in the world, after Uruguay, to formally legalize the herb. A long-promised objective of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party, the legislation has already passed and will be enacted in late summer/early fall. The anticipation is high for the potential cannabis industry and smokers alike.

This means the production, sale (by licensed retailers) and consumption will be legalized in all ten Canadian provinces. Provincial governments will have the freedom to shape their own specifications under the law, but the details of those plans have not yet fully come to light. Naturally, this is great news for all you cannabis travelers out there. The headache and risk of obtaining marijuana in Canada will soon be erased and you’ll be free to spark a little green as you please.

By Sergei Bachlakov

Also, keep in mind there will be new regulations. Below are some of the rules travelers should know.

– Anyone of legal age (18 or 19 and up depending on the province) can have up to 30 grams of non-medical marijuana in their possession in public.

– While driving, marijuana must be sealed and inaccessible. Of course, driving under the influence is still a crime and if you’re pulled over it must be clear you haven’t been smoking and you won’t be smoking in the car.

– In most provinces, public smoking will likely be treated the same as tobacco smoking. However, some provincial governments are making noise that public smoking will not be tolerated at all. We’ll have to take a wait and see the approach to that one.

– People of age are only allowed to have up to four marijuana plants for personal use. If you go over to someone’s house and they have more than four, you should know they are breaking the law.

– Only licensed retailers can sell you marijuana. Do not be the knucklehead who thinks legalization means you can buy and sell wherever you please! Provinces will decide on how and to whom they want to distribute licenses, so check in on that before heading out.

By Idea Trader

Provinces, Prices and the Public

Since a lot of this new legislation varies from province to province, we thought we’d give some info on a few provinces that are popular cannabis vacation destinations.

British Columbia

General attitude: Loose 

Where to buy: Government and independent, licensed retailers.

Price per gram: Flexible

Where can you smoke: Anywhere you can smoke tobacco

Legal buying age: 19

By Monkey Business Images

Alberta

General attitude: Expect stricter tendencies

Where to buy: Private retailers

Price per gram: Flexible

Where can you smoke: There is a movement to prevent public smoking

Legal buying age: 18

By Kulichok

Quebec

General attitude: Loose 

Where to buy: Government retailers  

Price per gram: $7-10 per gram

Where can you smoke: Anywhere you can smoke tobacco

Legal buying age: 18

By guruXOX

Ontario

General attitude: Stricter

Where to buy: Government retailers  

Price per gram: $10 per gram

Where can you smoke: Private residences

Legal buying age: 19

By Canna Obscura

Nova Scotia

Any “Trailer Park Boys” fans out there? Julian and Ricky would be upset to know that legalization will make it harder for them to profit off their marijuana enterprise.

General attitude: Strict

Where to buy: Government retailers  

Price per gram: $10 per gram

Where can you smoke: Private residences

Legal buying age: 19

Note: The provincial government of Novia Scotia is debating legislation that will allow landlords to ban Marijuana. Punishments for illegal possession and driving under the influence are also harsher.

 

By Canna Obscura

Accommodations and Marijuana

There is really only one major rule we can advise you on here. Be sure to communicate with your potential accommodation host about their marijuana policy before committing. Avoiding misunderstandings or conflict is the way to go. Most will ask that you keep smoking to outdoor areas on the property as to avoid leaving obvious scent trails. Just the respect the rules and you’ll be fine!

By CREATISTA
Cannabis in Canada: What Tourists Need to Know
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