Have you ever tried to look not-stoned while passing through airport security? It’s no joy ride, I can tell you that much. While I fumble with my laptop covered in weedy stickers and cannabis company logos, it always becomes a game of how little bloodshot eye contact I can get away with before the agent gives me that ‘are you high right now?’ eyebrow raise.
Granted, airport security likely has more pressing concerns, like stopping the trafficking of 130 mL hand creams across provincial borders. Despite the better sense of my inner dialogue, however, I inevitably succumb to panic at the thought of anyone stumbling upon an overlooked roach hiding in the depths of my carry-on.
Rest assured, if you can’t relate it’s now a bullet you can consider dodged.
Today (October 12), YVR announced that cannabis consumption is permitted in designated smoking areas.
In a news release, the airport’s media team highlighted a few key changes set to take place in time for October 17—the official date for cannabis legalization in Canada—including the green light on lighting up.
Much in the same way the airport handles cigarettes, consumers can toke-up in approved areas, but the terminal and aircrafts remain strictly “smoke- and vape-free” zones.
This is great news for anyone who struggles with traveller’s anxiety or uses cannabis for medicinal purposes.
Canadians without a medical cannabis license will also be able to fly with up to 30 grams of weed, as per the legal possession limits, on domestic flights. YVR urged travellers to educate themselves of the differences between provincial regulations, like variations in legal age of possession. In B.C., the legal age to purchase weed from a federally approved retailer is 19.
Transporting bud across international boundaries, however, is still considered trafficking and simply admitting to cannabis use at the border can carry heavy penalties, including a lifetime ban from the United States.
The release reads: “Keep in mind that YVR is also a pre-clearance airport, meaning on most U.S. flights, you clear customs and are considered to be in the U.S. before boarding your flight.”
The release follows a visible push to educate fliers on the risks of travelling with weed, even with the new cannabis regulations.
If anything, this cannabis-friendly attitude will save time lost to speed-inhaling a joint and brushing out bud crumbs from coat pockets before hitting airport property.