Cannabis legalization in many countries has become a hot topic in a tiny window period. At present, people are more concerned about how the new movement will affect their plans to travel outside their country.
With a focus on Canada, studies reveal that more than 20% of Canadians plan a vacation without being aware of the gruesome implications of being caught in possession of marijuana.
More so, another 22% of people who consume medical marijuana believe that they are protected by their documents or reports whenever they want to move from one state to another, considering that medical marijuana is legal. The larger number of respondents carries their prescription drug in carry-on bags.
The Authority in Canada
In the bid to legalize marijuana in Canada, THiA (Travel Health Insurance Association of Canada) produced a few surveys that provide actionable and believable insights. In the survey, it was stated that 20% of Canadians who plan to travel in the year are not aware of the severe implications of commuting with marijuana a stated above.
Regardless of the status of the legalization of cannabis in Canada, travelers must consider the implications of traveling with the substance. Moreover, they have to be vigilant enough to prevent unnecessary and awkward situation with the feds. Truly, people work so hard to enjoy a couple of vacations. In the heat of the moment, it is possible to forget to make a couple of checks before hitting the road. Nonetheless, everyone must be aware of delicate marijuana implications before traveling – with or without marijuana. Since the most popular destination for Canadian travelers is the United States, one must we aware that the country has severe federal laws binding on cannabis and other intoxicants.
Nonetheless, a legion of insurers is currently fighting the need for marijuana to be treated like alcohol during trips. By inference, airlines may allow the possession of about 30 grams of marijuana in the air. But the point most Canadians miss out is that traveling to the borders of the United States is a different ball game. Although marijuana is legal in Canada, it is not the same in the United States. There are strict federal laws that negate the possession of the smallest amounts of marijuana within the U.S. borders. A few penalties, if caught red-handed are:
- A possible jail term
- Legal prosecution
- A fine
Who does this affect?
From THiA’s survey, the level of awareness of travelers about marijuana largely depends on demographics. About 13% of boomers brag that they may not be victims of prosecutions or fine if caught with marijuana while traveling from a legal province to the borders of Canada.
In addition, another 21% of millennials responded to the question by saying that they may not face any consequences because they will likely not run into marijuana issues.
Another 60% of millennials and 77% of boomers are of the belief that it is wrong to be in possession of marijuana when traveling from one state to another, regardless of a prescription document.
What travelers should do ASAP:
In their words, it is wise to take caution and be mindful of what the international borders consider to be illegal and improper. According to THiA, a few golden rules that are important for travelers to consider have to do with travel insurance and they are:
- Understand what your travel insurance policy says about your trip. And seek the help of their customer service team or insurance providers in case of queries or inquiries.
- If you don’t know your health, book an appointment with your healthcare consultant and ask the necessary questions.
- Know your trip by finding out the distance of the trip, the time you intend to spend at your new destination, the activities you plan to try out, and the numbers of time you will travel within the year. Be sure to find the best fitting policy that matches your trip.
- Understand our rights as an individual. Take a look at the Bill of Rights and Responsibilities. This document presents all the necessary information for Canadians planning a trip. More so, it instills confidence in the traveler.
Finally, as a Cannabis user, knowing your rights as a traveler and a consumer will help you defend yourself in similar cases.