Medical marijuana is now legal in 33 states, while recreational cannabis is legal in 10. Michigan’s the latest addition to those 10 where you can use recreational marijuana. Soon, Utahns and Missourians may also get legal access to medical cannabis.
With more states legalizing this 500 BC-old plant, it’s easy to see why many wonder if traveling with CBD is fine. If getting across state borders with cannabidiol products in their bags isn’t a crime.
Especially now that hemp has become legal in the U.S. too.
So, is it okay to travel around with CBD? That’s what we’ll uncover in this post, so be sure to keep reading!
Why Use CBD in the First Place
Why do you want to use CBD and travel with it? You need to have a valid answer to this so you can justify your reason for carrying CBD with you. That way, you have an explanation if the Transportation Security Administration stops you.
For Pain Relief
Most people who seek medical cannabis do so to help them relieve symptoms of chronic pain. With chronic pain affecting over 50 million Americans, it’s likely the reason you want to use CBD. Many studies, like this one, have proven its effectiveness in managing pain after all.
For Anxiety or Depression
There are 80 different types of sleeping disorders that affect over 50 million in the US alone. The excitement that traveling brings can make these even worse.
For Fear of Flying
Aviophobia, or fear of flying, is one of the most common phobias, affecting up to 6.5% of the US population. CBD can help quell this intense, irrational fear, much like how it eases anxiety or depression.
Other Conditions CBD Can Help With
Traveling, whether on a plane or on the road, can trigger nausea, seizures, and epilepsy. The vehicle’s movement can even make the symptoms more severe than usual. That’s why a lot of people want to travel with CBD to relieve the symptoms of these conditions.
Jet-setting can also induce stress, which can put a damper on your holidays. While the stress you feel may not be as bad as aviophobia, it can still be very unpleasant. CBD’s anti-anxiety effects can also help reduce stress levels.
What the Authorities Have to Say on CBD
Everything we mentioned above are good enough reasons to have CBD with you. Getting sick while traveling is the last thing you want to happen after all. Now the question is, can you travel with CBD oil and not get arrested for it?
According to TSA, it’s federally-illegal to be in possession of marijuana and CBD oil. They will report anyone suspected to have violated this law.
But they also say security officers don’t search for marijuana or cannabis-infused products. Their priority is to detect threats to both “aviation and passengers”.
So, answering your question, can you bring CBD oil on a plane, TSA says you can’t. This rule applies to both your checked and carry-on bags.
Such a bummer, right? But while flying with CBD oil is a no-no, there’s a bit more to this “rule” and there are also workarounds.
Traveling with CBD, Not THC
To better understand TSA’s rules, you should first learn more about CBD and THC.
CBD and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are two of the cannabis plant’s 420 so constituents. Both belong to the group of compounds known as cannabinoids.
Cannabinoids are naturally-occurring chemical compounds in cannabis. They’re the reason behind the plant’s drug-like effects, including therapeutic and medicinal properties.
CBD and THC are the most studied and well-known cannabinoids. That’s because both have the most therapeutic effects, such as relief for pain and anxiety. Studies, like this one, have also shown these two to help prevent and manage dementia.
The difference is, THC is psychoactive, whereas CBD isn’t. In short, THC is the one responsible for the “high” the marijuana plant is famous for. CBD, when consumed alone, won’t give you that kind of “elated” feeling and sensation.
You can compare here and find more information about both cannabinoids. It’s vital you do, since THC’s psychoactivity can be the reason you’ll find the TSA at your heels. THC is one of the reasons the marijuana plant is federally-illegal.
That said, you should never travel with products that don’t meet TSA’s guidelines.
THC Content Guidelines to Remember
The main issue when traveling with CBD is if the product has high THC content. Any cannabis product with 0.3% THC (or more) is federally-illegal. Even if the oil you’re carrying has a label that says “CBD”, it can still have illegally-high THC content.
To ensure your CBD product is safe and legit for travel, stick to oils sourced from the hemp plant. Aside from hemp now being legal, it also contains less than 0.3% THC. So long as your CBD is from hemp, you shouldn’t have trouble getting past security.
But remember, some CBD oil manufacturers still use marijuana to get cannabidiol. This is why their products can still have higher-than-legal THC levels. This is fine for any other medical use, but not when you want to bring it during travels.
Bring All Medical Documentation You Have
Before boarding any transportation, make sure you have all your medical documents. They’re the first thing you want to show the TSA or local authorities in the event they do stop you.
Again, CBD is legal so long as it doesn’t exceed the lawful THC content. But authorities may still question you if they see anything suspicious on you or in your bags. Having all your doctor-issued documents can help you avoid a serious situation.
You should also bring a copy of the laboratory tests from your CBD oil source. These third-party test results outline what the product contains and what it doesn’t. That includes having less than 0.3% THC, or better yet, no THC at all.
Adhere to Airport Rules on Transporting Liquids
Before flying, be it for a planned international trip or a local one, check airport rules. All liquids, including your CBD oil, should meet TSA regulations on allowed amounts. The container itself should have a clear label and a tight seal.
Use CBD Before Your Travels
While actively looking for CBD isn’t on top of TSA’s to-do list, you may still feel worried about carrying CBD oil. In that case, you should consider consuming it before you travel.
If you have a morning flight, then take some CBD oil with your coffee or breakfast. If it’s later in the day, take some before going to the airport, either through gummies or capsules. Either way, these methods of ingestion will allow CBD’s effects to last longer.
Opt for Other Methods of Traveling
Can you take the bus, train, or a rental car to your destination? If so, then consider these alternatives.
This way, you don’t have to go through TSA officers or checkpoints. You shouldn’t have an issue traveling with your CBD oil in these.
But that’s only if you’re headed to somewhere where cannabis-infused products are legal. For instance, Idaho and Nebraska still has unclear laws on hemp-derived CBD products.
Is flying the only option to get to your destination and you’re still wary of taking CBD with you? Then your best bet is to get the product once you’ve arrived.
Granted, this is a tedious method. But at least you won’t suffer from a panic attack worrying about CBD and security.
Besides, with hemp-derived CBD being available in so many places now, you won’t have a hard time finding one. In fact, there are even vacation hot spots (outside of the US) where smoking pot is legal.
Don’t Exit the US with CBD on You
If you’re thinking of bringing CBD to an international destination, don’t. Products with this cannabis extract may be legal in the U.S. and some other countries, but not everywhere. Plus, these places have varying standards and regulations.
For example, some countries in Europe only consider CBD products legal if they contain less than 0.2% THC. That means your CBD oil containing less than 0.3% THC can already be illegal in these countries! Not only can that get you banned — it may also get you arrested.
So, don’t risk it. If you can get CBD oil in these places, better get them there than bring your own.
Plan so You Don’t Get Banned
While traveling with CBD has become more acceptable nowadays, it’s still a fuzzy, gray area. If you don’t want any risk at all, it’s best to leave your CBD oil at home and go with the alternatives we mentioned.
This way, your precious CBD won’t go to waste when TSA asks you to throw them in the bin. More importantly, you won’t get banned and barred from leaving in the first place.
Traveling somewhere for the first time? If so, then make sure you check out this new area travel guide we have!