Photo by Walter Cicchetti / Adobe Stock Photo
If you can buy beer, you can buy weed. Since the passing of Prop 64 California has become yet another iconic state for stoners. People from all walks of life love coming to visit Los Angeles and discovering its rich history.
And part of that rich history is participating in activities, mainly anything cannabis-related, as old as the state itself.
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Visiting a dispensary is much like visiting a liquor store, but with more security. Unlike most liquor stores, you must be 21+ to enter the premises. People under 21 can enter a liquor store, but won’t be able to purchase any alcohol. Bring your identification.
Keep in mind that all dispensaries operate on a cash-only basis. The reason for this is that most banks and credit unions do not want cannabis cash deposits on their statements. Remember, weed is only legal by state laws with many restrictions, but it is still federally illegal and is a Schedule 1 drug. If a bank were to accept cannabis deposits, the federal government could shut down its institution.
In accordance with Prop 64, adults can legally purchase and possess up to one ounce of dry herb or up to 8 grams of concentrate. Remember, possession does not necessarily mean ‘on your person’, it is also referring to you having contact with it. For instance, if it’s your car or in the bedside drawer, you are technically in possession. Be cautious, and calculate how much weed is in your pockets.
First-time patients get a nice little deal when visiting. Typically it is just a small percentage off of your first purchase, or a free gram or pre-roll. The bigger known dispensaries might have security outside checking IDs or someone is usually at the doors asking for some information, ID if you are a first-timer, etc…
The smaller dispensaries will have you check in with the person at the window, the same process as well as filling out a short consent form. Not all dispensaries are the same but if you find one you like, you get to meet your new budtender and build a beautiful relationship.
After you’re in the building, you may feel a bit overwhelmed with all the beauty sitting behind the glass. You may have the urge to droll and buy one of everything but take it easy, talk to the budtenders. Don’t be shy! They are always friendly and ready to answer any questions.
As a tourist, you’ll probably want to try everything SoCal is famous for, Hollywood sign, Walk of Fame, Griffith Observatory, LACMA, Universal Studios, and other things. But if you are a stoner then, of course, you’ll want to check out the best marijuana dispensaries around.
Although your budtender will ask what you are looking for, if you really don’t know what you’re looking for, they might be able to help you out. It’s helpful to know what it is that you are looking for, something relaxing? Are you looking for flower, edibles, or concentrates? What are you in the mood for? Are you traveling? What or how are you wanting to feel?
For a novice, it can be a bit scary your first time. So it helps to do a little research before heading out into the weed world. Don’t jump into the deep end if you don’t know the difference between THC and CBD or sativas and indicas. Never be afraid to ask questions. This applies to real life as well.
It may seem obvious, but common sense is not so common. When you walk out of a dispensary, your bag typically isn’t shouting “look at me, I’m full of weed!” So be cautious about where you go after you pick up. Leave the weed in the trunk of your car or take it back to the hotel, just try not to wander the streets with it.
Think of it like the rules about alcohol in public, no open containers in the car, and can consume within specially designated areas. The weed comes in carefully packaged containers, some are even smell proof. Don’t be discouraged if you feel like you need a doctorate degree to open the childproof packaging, no one really gets it on the first ten or twelve tries.
Of course, you are going to want to smoke all the goodies you just picked up so where can you go? Many places actually. You can visit a cannabis cafe, go for a hike, some beaches allow you to smoke on the beach away from large crowds. If you are staying at a hotel, Air BnB, or with a friend, make sure you ask about the smoking rules. It may be ok for some places, but not for all.
Here’s our guide with weed-friendly lodging options in LA.
As marijuana continues to be illegal under federal law, you can probably get away with flying with a small amount depending on if it is legal in the state you are traveling to. California airport police have no jurisdiction to arrest you if you are complying with state laws. However, keep in mind that if you are caught with it, TSA works under federal law and will ask you to dispose of it or you may be open to criminal charges.
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