Up until 2018, the only country in the world to have its nationwide ban on cannabis lifted was Uruguay. Many well-known cannabis-culture countries, like the Netherlands, the U.S., or Jamaica, may allow recreational use to some extent, but a nationwide restriction still controls and restricts the use and sale of cannabis.
Now, Canada is the second country in the world to have its bans on recreational use throughout the country lifted. The Cannabis Act legalized cannabis and allows adults to carry up to 30 grams of dried cannabis buds and have access to the fast-growing cannabis industry.
Even though cannabis is now legal for recreational use, Canada lifted its ban on cannabis for the expressed purpose of reducing crime. So, staying on the safe side of the law should be the first rule for enjoying cannabis culture in Canada.1
There’s an Age Restriction
Cannabis legalization in Canada means that growing and possessing cannabis is available to the adult sector. This means anyone under the age of 19 is not permitted access to cannabis-infused products in most of Canada.
In the states of Alberta and Quebec, adults as young as 18 may partake. However, Quebec’s latest state government has announced plans to change the legal age to 21. You will want to clarify all local rules before buying or using cannabis. Furthermore, sharing cannabis with anyone who is underage is a crime in Canada.2, 3
There Are Plenty of Outlets Available
Cannabis is available through online stores and physical locations opened under government licensing. Some states, like Ontario, only have online stores available at the moment. The larger cities all have plenty of retail locations. Currently, cannabis-infused edibles are only available from specific sources, so research the product you’re looking for.
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Purchasing from an online outlet is also an option in some locations, but this often requires a Canadian credit card and an adult to receive the package when it arrives. In Alberta, U.S. citizens must purchase their cannabis products at a physical location and pay with cash. This is because a U.S. credit card will not be cleared for cannabis purchase.4, 5
Where Can I Use Cannabis in Canada?
This is another important detail of cannabis legalization in Canada to research, as it can vary. In British Columbia, Alberta, or Ontario, the laws are less strict, and smoking cannabis is permitted anywhere that smoking tobacco is allowed. This means steering clear of places that may attract families or small children such as playgrounds, schools, or sporting facilities.
In Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, and the Yukon, public use is still very much prohibited, and you will have to find a private, smoke-friendly location for your use. Because many major hotels are non-smoking, you will not be able to use cannabis in a hotel room.5
Cannabis may be legal in your city, but cannabis legalization in Canada does not mean you can take any of the cannabis you purchase across international borders. So, make sure that you properly dispose of any leftovers before attempting to board international flights.
Even though Canada has taken a more open-minded view of cannabis culture, it would be a mistake to assume that cannabis-related crimes are looked on with leniency. If you are of legal age and use cannabis in Canada, educate yourself about the physiological effects of cannabis, as well as the laws specific to your particular location.
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