Tourists visiting Vancouver would be forgiven for thinking that marijuana has been legalized. But in reality, only 27 licensed producers authorized by Health Canada can sell marijuana legally for medicinal purposes.
Yet there are more dispensaries than Starbucks (over 100). How can this be? It all comes down to regulation. Police take a very hands off approach to these storefronts, and only intervene when the public is at risk.
The beginning of a new era
Vancouver has no way to regulate all these brand new cannabis business, and with the new liberal prime minister Justin Trudeau, it’s just a waiting game until the federal government can come up with a regulatory plan for legalization.
Vancouver’s huge growth in the dispensary space is very recent and very rapid. So with the continued growth of the cannabis industry in Canada, the population has slowly come to accept the wonderful plant in a variety of ways.
420 in Vancouver
The casual attitude to marijuana and the distinctive waft that accompanies its consumption seems to be the new norm in the western Canadian city. With the majority of Canadians pushing for decriminalization and legalization, the prevalence of cannabis is growing and so is it’s popularity.
In most dispensaries, the only form of documentation you need to purchase marijuana is some form of proof that you are over the age of majority. So with this easy access to all adults, it’s only a matter of time until people who have never tried cannabis will venture into new territory when it is fully legalized in 2016.
Weed tourism on the rise
With widespread acceptance of cannabis is Canada, a large influx of tourist are venturing to British Columbia, one of the best-growing regions in North America, and has coined the term “BC Bud” for good reason. That being said, if you are looking to travel to a beautiful, relaxing, and cannabis loving Canadian city, your best option is Vancouver.
Vancouver was also voted the best city to live in North America by Mercer’s 2015 Quality of Living Rankings. When you visit, you should have no problem finding a nearby dispensary. In early 2013, 14 dispensaries operated in the city, and now that number has increased by over 700% to over 100. Let’s just say that if you are a cannabis enthusiast, Vancouver should be a city on your bucket list.
What about other Canadian cities?
Other cities that have initiated the dispensary boom include Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon, and Victoria. These cities might not have the same cannabis culture as Vancouver, but they are still beautiful in there own rights. And some of the Canadian dispensaries ship their cannabis from BC producers!
Are you a Vancouver local? Or have you traveled there to enjoy its relaxed attitude? Share your story with us on one of our social media accounts or in the comments section below.