The Smoker’s Guide to Air TravelErinn Holman
Do you enjoy legal smoking herbs in your state, but aren’t sure if you can bring them along on your upcoming flight? Are you wondering if you can travel by plane from one legal state to another and, if so, how to go about it? Are you considering taking legal smoking herbs to another country? If any of these scenarios sound familiar, let us break it down so you can make informed decisions about air travel, domestic and abroad. Before you decide whether to take the risk of traveling by plane with your smoking materials, take a few minutes to read on and arm yourself with the knowledge to strategically plan your trip.
What Smokers Need to Know About Federal and State Laws Before a Flight
Things can get a bit confusing when weighing state laws against federal ones. Even if you have the legal right to possess and use smoking herbs in your state, you are still required to follow state and federal law. Since air travel is considered a federal mode of transportation, you technically cannot legally fly anywhere with any legal smoking herbs, other than tobacco. The feds also make it illegal to cross state lines with legal smoking herbs, even if you’re traveling from one state to another in which you can possess and use it legally. Therefore, any time you take an airplane from one state to another, or from this country to another, you run the risk of breaking federal law and potentially getting arrested.
Regardless of which state you’re in, most smokers say your outcome depends entirely on which agent of Federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) you get. So, don’t leave it up to chance. Follow these tips, participate in the comments, and consult professional legal counsel to determine the best way to travel for you.
Note: In some places and situations, it’s always illegal to smoke legal smoking herbs of any form. You can’t possess or use it on public or federal mode of transportation, or in any public space, on a school bus, on school grounds, in a correctional facility, or on federal lands, such as any national park. (See “The Smoker’s Guide to Road Trips” for more info about road tripping with legal smoking herbs.) You should consult a lawyer with specific legal questions or concerns you may have before you board a plane to ensure that you have the most up to date information.
Q: Which Smoking Products Can I Bring on a Plane?
First, consider these tips when flying with smoking herbs:
- If you are traveling with smoking products, bring your least favorite accessories
- Store anything you’re unsure of in a checked bag, instead of going through security and carrying it on the plane. It’s best to avoid the hassle.
- Because the TSA adheres to federal law, agents will not necessarily let you through security with most smoking products. Local police, however, can sometimes override them if they are present and knowledgeable.
- If you opt to bring anything, rolling papers and pre-rolled cones are probably best. Pipes are usually fine too, as long as they’re 100% free of residue. You can buy cleaner and then use the device for tobacco, or simply get a new one to travel with.
Q: Can I bring legal smoking herbs or accessories on an airplane?
The short answer is no. The TSA advises that even if you are completely legal to possess and use smoking herbs in the state you’re departing, and even if you are heading to a state where it’s also legal, the answer is still no because federal law governs airports and flights. Federal law trumps state law every time, so the possession of actual smoking herbs and/or accessories with any herbal remnants while in transit between like-minded states is a definite no-no! Since you’d technically be transporting legal herbs through other states’ airspace, it’s deemed illegal.
However, there are some smoking accessories that are safe to bring on a plane. You can relax about bringing your rolling papers because there are no trace remnants and are commonly used for tobacco. Traditional pipes are also common for tobacco smokers, so it’s also safe to bring a clean or new pipe. If you can’t get a new one before traveling, make sure you clean it, then clean it again for good measure.
Q: Is it ever OK to fly with legal smoking herbs or accessories?
In short, unless you’re traveling within a state that allows the use of the smoking herbs of your choice, it is illegal to travel by airplane to a different state with your herbs in tow. Currently, California is the only state that permits the legal transport of smoking materials and accessories within state lines but not necessarily in or out of their airports. Even other lenient states like Oregon and Washington don’t have the same legislation. Many people travel by plane without incident but, as research states, it is up to the TSA agent to choose how to handle each situation.
Q: Can I travel internationally with legal smoking herbs and accessories?
As you probably guessed, the answer is mostly no. So many places in the United States and Canada are totally down with the use and possession of legal smoking herbs that it’s beginning to feel normal to those of us who live here. However, this is not the mindset of all countries! It’s best to plan on taking a tolerance break if you’re traveling internationally, especially if heading to any avoid-at-all-cost destinations. Better safe than locked up abroad!
The Best Travel Gear for Smokers
Stylish, warm, and useful, this Raw Hoodie is a must-have for any traveling smoker. This is a medium-weight hoodie made of a cotton and polyester blend and features the Raw Poker Laces for stuffing and poking your rolls, wherever you go!
The RAW Nomad Bundle is a compact and useful smoking kit, perfect for traveling smokers! Each bundle includes a RAW Cone wallet, two packs of king size organic RAW rolling papers, and one handmade, durable glass tip that will take your rolled smokes to the next level. The Nomad Bundle is the perfect size to throw in your luggage or backpack the next time you head out on an adventure.
This handy RAW three-way shredder card was made in partnership with V Syndicate, the inventors of the grinder card! Grinder cards are the best way to grind your tobacco and preferred smoking herbs while you’re on-the-go because it fits easily in your pocket and can go everywhere the wind takes you! This credit card sized shredder card comes in a protective sleeve and has three different shredding sizes: fine, medium and course. So pick up one of these little bad boys and add it to your smoking travel kit before your next adventure.
Rolling Paper Depot’s First Aid Kit has everything a smoker needs in case of an emergency. Each smoking kit comes with a Raw Tin Box to keep your papers safe, Raw Natural 1 1/4 size rolling papers, a Raw Clipper Lighter, a RAW Magnifier Card, a bottle of Clear Eyes, RPD hand sanitizer, and a pack of gum. If you’re in a pinch and if weather permits, the Raw Magnifier Card can actually light your smoke if you lose your Clipper lighter during your travels.
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of federal and international law regarding air travel with legal smoking herbs, and you know that each government defines “legal” differently. One final tip before we part ways: If you don’t want to get involved with the hassle of flying with something that authorities could deem illegal, it’s safest to leave it at home. Rolling Paper Depot ships all across the country, so we recommend placing an online order prior to your trip and have it shipped to your final destination! Information is the key to staying safe. Sign up for our email list and stay tuned to our blog for more great tips, and updates to this article as the law’s change. Safe travels!