Marijuana.com recently investigated the airport procedures and legality of taking medical marijuana on an airplane, and we were pleasantly surprised by the policies of some major airports like LAX. But what about other popular forms of public travel?
In 2015, the revenue for the cruise ship industry in the U.S. reached $37.85 billion dollars from floating 20,335,000 passengers on inclusive journeys of rest and relaxation. With no heavy machinery to operate and no shortage of quality eats, the cruise ship sounds like the perfect place to enjoy cannabis, however, a strict zero-tolerance policy is in full effect across the seven seas.
As cannabis reform expands across the globe, not allowing passengers to carry cannabis in the same manner as one does alcohol will seem trivial.
Resort owners, private beach managers and tour companies operating in cannabis-friendly destinations will be wise to adopt a conscious policy for marijuana use on their properties.
“Some don’t allow smoking, just because they don’t allow (tobacco) smoking,” says Abi Roach who is the owner of HotBox Jamaica, a villa that provides cannabis vacations on the ganja-friendly island. She went on to add that many resorts with an official no-tolerance policy are happy to look the other way, so long as cannabis consumption is not in clear view of other guests. “You are allowed to possess two ounces here.”
Abi is a veteran ganjapreneur, having opened several successful marijuana-related businesses in Toronto and the bud & breakfast in Jamaica. She has significant knowledge on travel and cannabis reform.
“What Jamaica is trying to set up right now, are vending machines at cruise ship ports and airports.” The Jamaican government is working on the initiative, because the current law says you can possess weed, but can’t sell it. While these machines won’t dispense marijuana, they will sell foreign travelers the necessary permit to purchase medical marijuana — an easy revenue stream for the One Love nation.
If the legislation continues as planned, Jamaica will have kiosks set up at the major air and sea ports throughout the country. A medically trained attendant will be at these locations to help people with an existing medical marijuana prescription from other parts of the world obtain a permit.
For the recreational travelers interested in smoking weed from a trusted source, Jamaica will also offer an option to ‘self-declare’ at dispensaries; travelers may purchase up to 2 ounces of cannabis in Jamaica.
Marijuana.com contacted popular cruise companies Carnival, Norwegian, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean to discuss marijuana policy; the Royal Caribbean team were the only ones who returned our inquiry. A spokesperson for the company had this to say:
“Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. follows the (U.S.) Federal Law regardless of each state/countries’ recreational marijuana laws. Per Federal Law, Medical Marijuana is still considered illegal.”
Marijuana.com also asked if they allow MMJ aboard for people with valid prescriptions. “At this time, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. makes no distinction between Recreational and Medical marijuana.”
With the exception of a few niche cannabis boats operating under the radar through small harbors, marijuana on a cruise ship is still a clandestine affair.
Perhaps in the future, policies will change on the ocean, just as they are changing on land. Until then, ganja-loving travelers should visit places like HotBox Jamaica to enjoy a land-loving cannabis getaway while the seafaring folks swap the tequila and rum hangovers for some authentic rest and relaxation.