Can You Bring Your Vape On A Plane?

by Leslie McMann
Can you bring a vape on an airplane? Emjay. Photo by Stefan Fluck on Unsplash

Can you take your vape on an airplane? The short answer is, yes.

The long answer is still yes, but you must follow the TSA’s vape and e-cig packing instructions.  Vapes need to be put away, disassembled, and only in your carry on and not in your checked bag. While the TSA says they do not actively conduct searches for cannabis, if items are discovered in a security screening, then the TSA will contact local law enforcement. It is up to local law enforcement whether or not to investigate and pursue charges against the passenger. In states like California, Washington, and Colorado, where cannabis is legalized for adults, you won’t be facing charges if you possess less than the legal limit for that state. The same goes for medical marijuana card holders in any medical marijuana state.

How do I pack my vape?

According to TSA guidelines, the FAA (the federal agency that oversees the country’s airspace) prohibits e-cigs, vape pens, and vaporizers from being stored in checked bags. Storing these devices in checked luggage puts the passenger at risk of having their luggage pulled for an invasive search. Any prohibited items will be confiscated and the passenger could face fines. The other reason the TSA doesn’t want your vapes in checked baggage is because batteries can sometimes spark or explode in the extreme temperatures and low pressure of the airplane’s cargo hold. This is sort of the last thing you want to deal with thousands of miles above the ocean. Passengers are allowed to store vapes in their carry-on or personal bags, but the use of vapes is prohibited inside the airplane cabin.

Where can I fly with weed?

Flying with a personal use amount of cannabis products between states with legal weed laws is relatively safe. Even if the TSA discovers cannabis products during a search, they will not refer the case to local law enforcement if it’s legal and a small amount. TSA only calls law enforcement in cases where the drugs discovered in a security check are locally illicit or exceed the legal limit.

If the local jurisdiction doesn’t prosecute the recreational adult use of marijuana, they are unlikely to send law enforcement to arrest someone for it. However, it’s more of a loophole than a law: all United States airspace is under federal jurisdiction and all cannabis products containing more than 0.3% THC are still federally criminalized. Flying with large amounts of cannabis across states could get you flagged for smuggling and drug trafficking, which is a federal felony. Do not vape or smoke cannabis products on the airplane.

What type of weed should I take on the plane?

One would be safest flying with a small package of edibles or a tincture to help calm your travel jitters and get you through the flight. Edibles, tinctures, and topicals are also the only kinds of products allowed for use during the flight—vaping and smoking of any substance on an airplane is a fire hazard. There is a really strict fine for vaping or tampering with smoke detectors, so best to keep it sealed and out of sight.

Packing a huge amount of weed when traveling to a state with a legal adult-use market is simply unnecessary. You can save room in your bag, reduce risk, anxiety, and support the local industry by buying all the weed you need for your vacation after you land. That’s why there are so many dispensaries conveniently located next to LAX. Many of the legal state’s airports even have cannabis amnesty boxes where you can deposit your leftover weed before you leave. 

If you’re visiting Los Angeles or San Diego, Emjay would love to make your whole vacation and deliver it to you. Just enter the address of wherever you’re staying—hotel, Airbnb, your mom’s cousin’s house—to see which products are available.

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