How to Travel with CBD…And Why You Should
Vacation season is coming up again this year with spring break and summertime right around the corner. Whether it’s a big family beach trip, a secluded mountain getaway or anything in between, there is a ton of fun to be had on vacation.
But a vacation isn’t always a place of complete refuge. Issues that one deals with on a regular basis can follow you on vacation. Additionally, there are often the unexpected injuries.
If you take CBD oil regularly or if you want to bring it with you on your trip for the “just in case” moments, then this article is for you. We’re going to lay out an easy guide showing not only why bringing CBD oil on a trip is a good idea for multiple reasons, but also the proper ways to travel with CBD oil.
Why You Should Travel With CBD
You Never Know What Will Happen While You are Traveling
With vacations often come unexpected aches and pains. A jerky roller coaster ride, a sprain from a quiet mountain hike, or sore and achy muscles from learning to surf. Whatever the case may be, when you travel with CBD oil, it can help relieve a lot of these aches and pains that you might encounter.
Why is that?
When you get an injury, for example a sprained ankle or sore neck, your white blood cells release chemicals targeted at the injured area and the body goes to work to try to heal the injury. As the chemicals are released, blood flow increases to the affected area, resulting in redness and warmth. Some of the chemicals can cause fluid to leak into the tissue, which results in swelling–inflammation–and can stimulate the nerves and cause the pain that you are feeling throughout the healing process.
CBD oil is known for it’s amazing, natural anti-inflammatory properties, working very similarly to over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications.1
In fact, Dr. Bonnie Goldstein, author of the book Cannabis Revealed, talks about this very thing in her article Trade-In Your Ibuprofen for Cannabis.2
She says that while these over-the-counter drugs are effective at relieving pain caused by inflammation, they come with a plethora of negative side effects because of how the drugs interact with a person’s body.
“In June of 1999, The New England Journal of Medicine estimated that 16,500 NSAID-related deaths occur among Americans with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis every year.3 Over 100,000 NSAIDs users are hospitalized per year for gastrointestinal complications A review of 17 studies found that 11% of preventable drug-related hospital admissions could be attributed to NSAIDs.4”
With shocking statistics like this, it’s no wonder that people are starting to turn to natural substances like CBD oil to help relieve not just every day aches and pains, but also chronic inflammation.
This is why taking CBD oil with you on your travels can be such a good thing. You don’t want the pain of an unexpected minor injury to get in the way of enjoying your vacation.
CBD Can Calm Your Nerves While Traveling
Another great reason to travel with CBD oil is if you are a nervous traveler. Whether you are flying or driving, travel can be nerve-wracking. Having a natural substance that you can take to calm your nerves that is also completely non-psychoactive–and therefore safe to take and drive–could be a lifesaver.
CBD has taken the world of anxiety by storm in recent years from all of the research that is being done on CBD’s anti-anxiety effects.
In a study done in 2010, CBD was shown to reduce the symptoms of people who dealt with social anxiety disorder (SAD). Brain scans of the participants were taken and revealed changes in the blood flow to the regions of the brain linked to feelings of anxiety.5
In this study, CBD not only made the participants feel better but it also changed how their brains responded to anxiety itself.
Another study done in 2011 also found that CBD has the ability to reduce social anxiety in relation to public speaking.6
In 2015, after an analysis of previous studies, researchers concluded that CBD oil is a promising treatment for numerous forms of anxiety, including social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.7
So if you get the jitters before traveling, CBD oil can be a great thing to take along to help you feel more comfortable.
How To Properly Travel with CBD Oil
If you are planning on driving to your destination, then there isn’t a big trick to traveling with CBD, except to do your research and keep in mind the laws of the state you are visiting if you are going to be crossing state lines.
While hemp and hemp-based products are federally legal now thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, states still have their own legislation regarding these products, and some states are less than friendly towards CBD. Some even have pretty harsh consequences if you are caught with it in your possession. So make sure you are aware of state laws so you can keep yourself protected and within their legal limits. We will touch on this more in a bit.
If you are planning on flying with your CBD, you do have options.
You are allowed to take your CBD oil onto a plane in your carry-on with you if you choose, but make sure that you have very clear labeling on your product or has a QR code that links the product back to it’s Certificate of Authenticity.
The reason for this is that TSA does not allow any marijuana-based products onto flights and confiscates anything they find as well as alerting law enforcement. Marijuana is still federally illegal and considered a Schedule I Controlled Substance–but this isn’t the case with hemp anymore, which is federally legal now.
The problem is that TSA may not be able to differentiate between a hemp-based product and a marijuana-based one, so make sure that you’re labeling is undeniably clear so you can avoid having to deal with a potentially time-consuming misunderstanding.
Also, if you do take CBD oil regularly for a medical condition, having your doctor’s written approval or prescription with you could save you a lot of hassle depending on the states you will be flying through and what they require.
Traveling internationally can be where this gets a little tricky.
Traveling Internationally with CBD
If you plan on traveling to Mexico with your CBD, you should be good to go. In 2017, Mexico passed legislation that legalized CBD with less than 1% THC. They even consider CBD to be a supplement.8 It isn’t illegal to take CBD over the border of Mexico; but if you do plan to take it, just make sure about the labeling on your bottle for when you come back through American security. You don’t want your CBD oil being mistaken for a form of marijuana.
While CBD was legalized in Canada in 2018, it is illegal to enter or leave the country with CBD and products similar to it, even if you travel from somewhere where CBD has been legalized. And this includes traveling with it for medicinal purposes. Entering or leaving Canada with a CBD product “can result in serious criminal penalties both at home and abroad.9” They really aren’t playing around, and this is the case with many other countries as well.
So if you are planning on traveling to Canada–or most other countries, as a general rule–we would recommend that you go ahead and leave your CBD behind. It’s just one less potential hassle to deal with and leaving it behind could keep your vacation from quickly and unexpectedly going down the toilet.
When you travel with CBD you want to make sure that you do your research well and know your state laws, because each state has their own laws and variations of those laws. The legality of CBD products are typically going to be lumped into a state’s marijuana laws.
There are basically 3 categories that a state could fall into regarding their laws on CBD: 1) they have legalized medical and recreational cannabis, 2) they have legalized medical cannabis to some extent, and 3) all cannabis is illegal, hemp or marijuana-based.
The states that have legalized medical and recreational marijuana are: Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, and Washington, D.C.
The states that have legalized medical marijuana are: Alabama (CBD only), Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia (CBD only), Hawaii, Idaho (THC-free CBD products), Illinois, Indiana (CBD only), Iowa (CBD only), Kansas (CBD only), Kentucky (CBD only), Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi (CBD only), Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina (CBD only), North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma (CBD only), Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina (CBD only), Tennessee (CBD only), Texas (CBD only), Utah, Virginia (CBD only), West Virginia, Wisconsin (CBD only), Wyoming (CBD only).
And the 2 states that don’t allow CBD products are South Dakota and Nebraska10, although there is pending legislation in Nebraska to redefine CBD according to Nebraska law and legalize it for those who are in genuine need of it.
Conclusion – Travel with CBD
Travel with CBD is definitely a possibility with the new tone that has been set for the country as far as hemp and hemp-based products go. So go out and enjoy your vacation with the knowledge you need to also be able to use and enjoy your CBD oil!
- “Targeting Inflammation with CBD”, David Perl Mutter, MD, https://www.drperlmutter.com/targeting-inflammation-with-cbd/
- “Trade in Your Ibuprofen for Cannabis”, Project CBD, https://www.projectcbd.org/medicine/trade-your-ibuprofen-cannabis
- Wolfe M. MD, et al, The New England Journal of Medicine, June 17, 1999, Vol. 340, No. 24, pp. 1888-1889.
- Howard RL, Avery AJ, Slavenburg S, et al. Which drugs cause preventable admissions to hospital? a systematic review. Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2007;63(2):136-147
- Neural basis of anxiolytic effects of cannabidiol (CBD) in generalized social anxiety disorder: a preliminary report, Journal of Pshycopharmacology, https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0269881110379283
- Cannabidiol Reduces the Anxiety Induced by Simulated Public Speaking in Treatment-Naïve Social Phobia Patients, Neuropsychopharmacology, https://www.nature.com/articles/npp20116?foxtrotcallback=true
- “Can CBD Oil Help Anxiety?”, Medical News Today, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319622.php
- Mexico’s CBD Laws – Paving the way for the rest of the health world”, Single Seed, https://www.singleseed.com/mexicos-cbd-laws-paving-the-way-for-the-rest-of-the-health-world/
- “Cannabis and international travel”, Government of Canada https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/cannabis-and-international-travel
- Bill would redefine what CBD oil is under Nebraska law, 101.1 NOW, https://www.1011now.com/content/news/Bill-would–506138401.html