Travelling with Cannabis
Although the purchase and consumption of cannabis for recreational purposes is now legal in Canada with the passing of the Cannabis Act, it is important to remember that it is still illegal to take cannabis across the Canadian border, regardless of whether cannabis is legal in the country you are travelling to.
You may be subject to serious criminal charges both at home and in the foreign jurisdiction if you attempt to travel to another country with cannabis without a permit or exemption issued by Health Canada. Only Health Canada has the authority to grant permits and exemptions to import or export cannabis for limited purposes, such as medical or scientific purposes.
If you are travelling to the United States, it is important to remember that cannabis is still considered illegal under US federal law which governs the US border, regardless of whether some states have legalized its recreational use. The sale, possession, production and distribution of cannabis remains illegal under US federal law. If you attempt to cross the border in violation of this law, you may be denied admission and become subject to arrest, seizures and fines.
When returning to Canada, it is also illegal to transport cannabis or any product containing cannabis into Canada regardless:
(a) If you are permitted to use cannabis for medical purposes;
(b) of how much cannabis you have with you; and
(c) if you are travelling to or from a place where cannabis has been legalized.
If you are returning to Canada, it is a criminal offence not to declare to the Canada Border Services Agency that you have any cannabis with you at the time of entry.
In summary, do not take cannabis out or bring it into Canada.
Even if you are only travelling within Canada, you should be familiar with the laws of the particular province or territory you are travelling to. The Cannabis Act allows provinces and territories to determine certain restrictions, including lowering the possession limit, increasing the minimum age and restricting where cannabis may be consumed in public. Passengers on planes flying domestic will be permitted to have a legal amount of cannabis ie: 30 grams in either their carry on or checked bag. It is important to also check the policies of individual airports as to whether cannabis can be consumed within the premises and if so, in what designated areas.
Disclaimer: This article is not intended as legal advice and is for general information purposes only. If you require legal advice, please contact a professional.