Marijuana and in particular marijuana edibles have been rapidly growing in popularity in recent years and months. This is no surprise: In just the last eight years alone, nearly a dozen U.S. states have legalized marijuana, as has the entire nations of Uruguay and Canada. With this growing popularity, it’s much more likely that you may find yourself in a situation where you’re wondering:
Can I bring marijuana edibles on a plane?
Can I Bring Edibles on a Plane?
This is a question that doesn’t necessarily have a clear yes or no: It depends on what you mean by “can I”.
On one hand, if you’re in a state where marijuana is illegal, you could be referred to local law enforcement if the edibles are found. That said, the TSA isn’t looking for marijuana edibles, and thus wouldn’t know if you had them if that weren’t clearly labelled.
TSA guidelines state that “TSA security officers do not search for marijuana or other illegal drugs, but in the event a substance that appears to be marijuana or a cannabis infused product is observed during security screening, TSA will refer the matter to a law enforcement officer.”
This means that if you live in a state where marijuana is legal, the absolute worst that could happen if they find your edibles and know what they are, is that they wouldn’t let you proceed until you got rid of them. They are unlikely to refer you to law enforcement because it’s legal, and even if they did the police could do nothing about it, though they could ask you to dispose of it.
“When a person is found to have marijuana on them (an amount legal under Colorado law) at the TSA checkpoints, a Denver Police officer typically explains the airport’s rules and asks the passenger to dispose of the marijuana”, Health Montgomery, senior public information officer, told the Thrillist in 2017. “In all of 2015, the number of people contacted at the TSA checkpoints about marijuana possession was only 29. That was out of 54 million passengers. The numbers have been so small that the police no longer track these contacts”.
If you, however, live in a state where it’s illegal, and law enforcement is called, you could be arrested or charged if state law permits.
What if You Have a Medical Card?
Having a medical card is relevant if you live in a state where marijuana is not legal recreationally but is legal medically. This means that if a TSA officer finds your edibles, and calls police, you would be able to show them that you have the cannabis legally.
However, as mentioned above, you are likely to be asked to dispose of the cannabis before proceeding.
Marijuana Friendly States
Being in a marijuana friendly state, and flying to another marijuana friendly state, certainly makes travelling with marijuana edibles far safer and less risky – so long as you are within both states legal possession limits.
If TSA does find your marijuana edibles in one of these states, they sometimes will let you proceed with them. At worst, they will ask you to dispose of them before proceeding onto your plane.
Flying internationally is unadvised, as some countries have very strict laws on the possession of marijuana and marijuana edibles.
Being caught with marijuana or edibles can sometimes result in being detained, and charges can sometimes be harsh. Even when flying to countries where it’s legal like Canada, it’s best to be safe and avoid travelling with cannabis.