The Government Of Canada Issues Warning About Travelling Outside Of Canada With Legal Marijuana
Important information for Canadian travellers.
While it may seem like common sense to assume that travelling with marijuana is not permitted across international borders, many Canadians may be unaware of the risks and repercussions of doing so amid the country's upcoming marijuana legalization.
In April, the Government of Canada updated the section of its website that covers alcohol, drugs and travel with a warning the reads the following:
When travelling abroad, Canadians are subject to the laws of the country they are visiting. Even if they are allowed to possess marijuana in Canada for medicinal or recreational purposes after it's legalized, it may still be illegal in the countries they are travelling to. In fact, most countries enforce a zero-tolerance policy for possession and use of illegal drugs, and even small quantities can lead to severe legal consequences.
Even in jurisdictions that have legalized marijuana, it may still be considered a criminal offence to possess or transport marijuana across the border and such may result in criminal prosecution and fines. This applies to both recreational and medicinal marijuana.
"Being authorized under Canada's Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations to possess or produce cannabis for medical purposes in Canada also does not permit you to import into Canada or export from Canada cannabis seeds or dried cannabis," reads the government's website.
The government also warns that individuals who have previously used drugs, including marijuana after it becomes legal in Canada, may be denied entry to another country, depending on that country's laws. If customs officials somehow get information that implicates you as a marijuana user (such as from marijuana purchases on your credit card statements), you may be turned away at the border.
"If you get caught with illegal drugs, even if they are considered legal in Canada, being a foreigner or not knowing the local laws is no excuse. Your Canadian citizenship does not give you immunity or preferential treatment in other countries."
Over 1,700 Canadians have been jailed abroad, with a third of them for drug-related offences.
For more information, visit travel.gc.ca.