After living abroad for the majority of a decade in countries where the mere thought of smoking cannabis or buying weed online will get you put in jail or worse, I explored what I’d been missing on a recent visit to Canada –a legalised cannabis industry that bloomed while I was away.
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Cannabis Tourism in Canada
I recently went back to Canada to re-up on family time and pick up a few necessities on my travel wish list for the years of travel ahead. While I was there, I thought I’d explore Canada weed online, as well as the numerous head shops, lounges, and dispensaries.
Cannabis became legal in Canada on October 17, 2018 and retail stores started rolling out nation-wide soon after. The rollout process was sloppy and weed shortages were common at first. Today, cannabis stores are flush and there’s talk of excess supply leading into 2020.
In Canada people can legally buy weed online, and at upscale cannabis shops that often resemble an Apple Store. You don’t need a prescription, and you don’t need a membership. You can smoke or vape cannabis in some lounges, too –but the laws are still catching up.
- Like alcohol, the legal age for smoking cannabis in Canada is 19 years of age, 18 in Quebec
- You can generally smoke cannabis wherever cigarettes are allowed, with a few additional exceptions for cannabis in some provinces –more details here
- You can possess, carry, and share 30 grams of cannabis anywhere in Canada
- You can get Canada weed online delivered to your Airbnb, hotel, or apartment from online shops like Headz and Cheap Weed within days
All the cannabis stores I’ve seen accept cash, debit, or credit cards. If you’re coming from abroad I recommend cash.
I really, really recommend cash if you’re planning to cross the US border.
Depending on where you go in Canada, walk-in retail stores and weed online for sale is regulated by the government with restrictions on potency, and run by the government and/or private businesses depending on provincial legislation. You can find out everything you need to know about government legislation and buying legal cannabis in Canada here.
Worth mention, it is also legal to grow up to 4 plants per household in Canada for personal use. You cannot sell it without a license. And it’s per household, not per occupant.
Popular Canadian destinations for cannabis tourism include Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal. The best time to visit is during the summer.
Visa Requirements (eTA)
You don’t need to be a citizen to purchase cannabis products. Fans of Canadian bud may want to visit the country more often than your average tourist. And if that’s the case, visa-exempt foreign nationals travelling to Canada frequently by air may require eTA Canada (Electronic Travel Authorization).
With a valid eTA that lasts five years you can travel to Canada as often as you want for short stays (normally for up to six months at a time).
For more information check out the Canada eTA application.
Before you travel, be sure to read our most popular post about travel insurance. You’ll be glad you did.
Why Use Cannabis?
Cannabis isn’t all “Reefer Madness”, in my opinion it never was. The Western world is currently rediscovering much of what was once common knowledge just over a century ago; generally speaking, cannabis heals.
In addition to recreational use, cannabis can also treat health issues like inflammation, anxiety, menstrual cramps, depression, trouble sleeping, seizures, irritable bowel, arthritis, and pain.
I’ve been more interested in learning about its effect on cancer and the personal accounts of those who have been cleared of the illness with the help of a high THC oil paste called Rick Simpson Oil, or RSO for short.
I’ll reserve my thoughts and discoveries on RSO for another article, but if that’s why you’re here and you want to learn more about cannabis and cancer –check out Run From the Cure. If you want to buy Rick Simpson Oil online in Canada you can find it here.
When cannabis became legal, townships were able to vote on whether they’d open a cannabis store, and some municipalities opted not to. Licenses were handed out to businesses sparingly at first, although any city I’ve been to this year has at least a handful of them.
If your destination doesn’t have a cannabis store, buy Canada weed online and have it shipped to where you’re headed in advance. Canada Post can usually deliver the same week.
Here’s a few shops I’ve encountered on my visit to Canada, between April and December 2019;
- Relm (Burlington)
- Pioneer (Burlington)
- Nova (Toronto)
I never did make my way to a government-run Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) because I don’t like to encourage that sort of thing; they already have a monopoly on alcohol and I’d rather stimulate growth in the private sector.
It’s December 2019, and Canada is still figuring out cannabis legalisation. We’re not at the level of Amsterdam’s reputation just yet –cannabis legislation is new and incomplete, and general non-smoking laws have made it difficult to open lounges.
To vape or smoke in a Toronto cannabis lounge like Hotbox Cafe, my understanding is that it must be outdoors, and not on a public patio (private entrance). No food or drink can be sold where people smoke or vape, and the only water they’re legally allowed to serve is for the bongs.
At some cannabis lounges you may have to bring your own cannabis, too.
Selling cannabis in any capacity is another roll of regulatory red tape for canna-businesses to overcome –whether they’re selling it in a food service setting as an edible, or at a weed dispensary.
That is, unless you register your cannabis corporation as a “scientific research facility”.
Vapour Central is one such cannabis lounge on Yonge Street in Toronto that’s registered as a scientific research facility; a designation that allows the business to get around provincial laws that ban vaping inside commercial spaces.
Fill out a short cannabis survey on the way in, order up some snacks, and use the Volcano vape they include with your $5 cover or bring your own. The only hook is that it’s a no-combustion lounge, vape only.
There’s plenty of cannabis cafes and lounges in Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal –here’s a few;
- Hot Box Patio (Toronto)
- Planet Paradise (Toronto)
- Yongesterdam Lounge (Toronto)
- New Amsterdam Cafe (Vancouver)
- Cannabis Lounge (Calgary)
- The Green Room (Saint John)
Buying Weed Online
The official government-run website to order weed online where I’m from is the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS), although I find their offering a little light and restricted.
For this reason, there’s alternative websites for Canada weed online that offer lower prices and a greater selection.
If you’re an international weed aficionado looking for the best bud, or looking to buy CBD oil online for medical reasons, or buy weed edibles online –visit these websites to see if they ship to your country;
Headz has weed online for sale under religious grounds as a sacrament; you can buy everything from edibles and bud to cannabis oil for sale in Canada.
This is also where you can buy Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) which can be consumed orally in food or capsules, as a suppository, smoked, or vaped with the right equipment.
Cheap Weed is another place you can order weed online in small and large quantities. To this day the very idea of getting weed in the mail still feels weird –but you can! From reputable businesses! Quality controlled! Vacuum-sealed 3 times or more! Hooray!
Headz and Cheap Weed both offer discreet packaging, and offer a second shipment free of charge if your initial shipment never arrives.
Add this guide to Pocket, I’ll update it as new/popular legal options become available inside and outside of Canada.
Some links to buy Canada weed online within this article allow you to buy cannabis products online from countries where cannabis is legal.
Cannabis edibles, CBD oils, and the ability to buy real weed online is legal in Canada; if it isn’t legal where you live, follow the law. Do not buy it online.
We do not endorse the consumption of cannabis products in countries where it is illegal, and as such, we do not consume cannabis in countries where it’s illegal. Please respect your local government and do not break local controlled substance laws.
Although you can buy real weed online cheap in the USA, Canada, Europe/UK, and internationally using links provided within this article, we are not responsible for any legal consequences that may arise from your purchase.
Worth mention; Anyone entering the United States from Canada after consuming cannabis products in Canada may be denied entry into the United States if they admit as much at the border. And traveling with cannabis across borders is a hard no as well. If you purchase cannabis during your stay, pay with cash.
With this in mind –ahem– This article is for informational and/or entertainment purposes only, and intended for those who will be visiting Canada for cannabis tourism to consume marijuana products legally within the country during their visit.
Nothing on this website should be considered legal advice, and you can find the rest of our site policies here.
Puff, Puff, Pass
So, friendly stranger –what’s your best advice on buying weed online?
Which head shops in Canada did you visit?
What’s your favourite cannabis strain, and why?
Pass on your best tips for fellow tokers in the comments below.
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