Vegas is famous as a place to get into trouble – but that doesn’t mean you want to be dealing with fines and court dates after your return. Do you know enough about the Las Vegas marijuana laws to stay legal?
Over 36 million people visit “Sin City” each year. However, with the legalization of recreational marijuana, there’s one less way to sin now. But that doesn’t mean you don’t need to learn about Las Vegas marijuana laws. It’s legal, but you can still get in trouble if you’re not careful.
You should be able to enjoy your vacation without fear of legal trouble, and we’re here to help. In this guide, we’ll give you everything you need to know about marijuana in Las Vegas so you can enjoy your time safely. Keep reading to learn more!
Las Vegas Marijuana Laws: The Basics
Nevada recently became one of a handful of states that allow adults over 21 to use recreational marijuana. Recreational use and recreational sales are both permitted in the state.
As an adult in Las Vegas, you can buy up to an ounce of flower, or an eighth of an ounce of concentrates such as shatter, wax, or oil, on your visit to the recreational weed shop.
When recreational marijuana was legalized, there were already more than 60 medical marijuana dispensaries operating in the state. Some of these dispensaries got to test out recreational sales using an “early start” license that let them sell recreational as well as medical weed. The existing infrastructure helped make the transition to legal recreational weed smooth.
How to Buy Recreational Weed in Vegas
Buying weed is now almost as easy as buying alcohol in Nevada.
Just walk into the dispensary and make your selection – you can ask the knowledgable staff for guidance if you’re not sure what to get. After you’ve made your choice, you’ll have to show your ID when you go to pay for it.
However, you can’t pay with your card. Since marijuana is still illegal according to federal laws, dispensaries operate with cash only, because dispensaries can’t use banking.
How to Find Vegas Dispensaries
Wondering how to find the dispensaries that sell recreational and not medical marijuana?
It’s up to the dispensary to promote its offering, but in Vegas, it’s easy. The recreational dispensaries are clearly marked, and you can look up the locations with a simple Google search. Since the dispensaries need to make money, they have an incentive to make themselves easy to find.
Can I Buy Medical Marijuana?
If you have a medical marijuana card, it’s a good idea to seek out a medical vendor. You’re likely to save a lot of money if you buy medical rather than recreational weed – the large numbers of tourists keep the recreational prices high.
However, you can’t get a medical card as an out-of-state tourist, so Las Vegas visitors have to smoke recreational weed unless they live in another part of the state.
What’s the Difference Between Medical and Recreational Weed?
Although the price of medical tends to be lower, there aren’t any other differences between medical and recreational marijuana. If you have a medical card to show, you’ll pay a discounted price for the same product, saving about 10 or 20 percent. But you can’t legally buy medical marijuana without a medical card.
Some states keep separate medical and recreational inventories, and mark which product is which in stores. However, Nevada laws don’t differentiate between the two. This helps keep the process of growing and buying simpler, reducing overhead costs.
Since the laws see no difference in medical and recreational weed, there’s no difference in quality between the two. Recreational is tested in the same way as medical is in Nevada, which is a benefit to customers. Any weed you buy has been thoroughly tested for heavy metals, mold, pesticides, mycotoxins, strength, and THC content. See more about finding recreational dispensaries here.
Federal Marijuana Laws
As mentioned above, the legality of marijuana in a state doesn’t reflect on the federal government’s marijuana laws.
According to federal laws, marijuana is just as illegal as other drugs including methamphetamines, cocaine, and heroin. In fact, the federal government recently made threats to crack down on the states where marijuana has been legalized. But Congress chose not to send any money to the anti-marijuana initiative, so the threats have been empty so far.
Can You Bring Weed Home?
You still can’t bring any marijuana on the plane back from Vegas – airspace is legally considered federal territory. However, the TSA has stated that small amounts of weed aren’t a priority in its searches, and legal amounts can get through undetected. Still, it’s not advised to try it, since the legal repercussions can be serious if you get caught.
You can’t use the U.S. Postal Service to mail weed for much the same reasons. Private mailing companies such as UPS and FedEx have stated that they will never intentionally ship marijuana, since they need to follow federal law, too.
It’s also illegal to bring marijuana across state lines in a car – even if you’re bringing weed into Nevada, where it’s legal. But if you get stopped and you’re within Nevada state lines, the police can’t know where you purchased the weed, and it’s unlikely to be an issue unless you’re carrying more than the legally permitted amount.
Although you can have marijuana in the car, smoking while stoned isn’t allowed. Recent laws have made it so that police can’t give you a urine test if they suspect you of driving while high. However, you can be given a blood test if you fail a field sobriety test.
How to Enjoy Marijuana in Las Vegas
The Las Vegas marijuana laws are relaxed enough to encourage recreational weed use. As long as you follow the rules – buy the proper amounts, don’t drive stoned, and don’t smoke in public – you can get stoned in Vegas with no legal repercussions.
Wondering if weed is right for you? Check out some of the mental health benefits of the plant here.