With Canada’s legalization of marijuana, cannabis tourism is on the rise. If you’re traveling to Prague, you may be wondering what the rules are or if you can even get a hold of cannabis while in town. Here’s the good news: Prague is one of the most liberal cities in Europe when it comes to marijuana.
Marijuana Laws in Prague
When the Czech Republic formed in 1993, it had some of the most liberal cannabis laws around. The drug laws allow for the use and possession of marijuana, but the production and sale of cannabis were criminalized.
In 1999, the law was amended to criminalize the possession of “amounts larger than small” amounts of cannabis. The vague wording of the law put the legality of possession in a gray area. In 2010, the law was finally amended and established a possession limit of up to 15 grams of dried marijuana and up to five plants.
In 2013, laws changed again to allow medical marijuana patients to have up to 30 grams of dry cannabis per month. Medical marijuana is only available for certain illnesses, including multiple sclerosis and AIDS.
If you have less than 15 grams of cannabis or fewer than five marijuana plants, a fine is a maximum punishment. If you possess more than the legal limit, the maximum penalty is one year of jail time. While the maximum penalty is rarely evoked, it is still important for tourists to be aware of the limits to avoid prosecution.
Prague’s Cannabis Culture
Prague has a prominent cannabis culture. It’s easy to get a hold of cannabis at clubs, bars, and concerts, where small amounts of marijuana are sold discreetly.
Recreational use of marijuana is still illegal, but possession of small amounts of cannabis is generally tolerated. Still, you can’t consume marijuana in public – it’s against the law. You’ll need to use it privately.
While small amounts of cannabis are generally tolerated, the marijuana you purchase must be consumed in the Czech Republic. In bordering countries, like Germany, marijuana is still illegal on the federal level, although some areas allow you to possess up to 15 grams without penalty.
Other Cannabis-Friendly Destinations
Marijuana tourism is on the rise around the world. Amsterdam is an obvious destination, but other cities are legalizing cannabis.
In America, the state of Colorado legalized marijuana for recreational purposes, which makes it a popular destination for both domestic and foreign cannabis tourists. In Seattle, recreational cannabis is also legal. It’s legal in Portland, too.
Uruguay has also legalized cannabis, but only residents can buy weed from government-approved pharmacies. Here’s the loophole: residents can give marijuana away. That gives travelers a reason to make friends with the locals.
In Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica, cannabis is decriminalized. In this coastal town, where bicycles are the main form of transportation, marijuana is widely accepted as part of the country’s “Pura Vida” motto.
Now that Canada has legalized marijuana, the cannabis tourism industry is expected to grow. The cannabis market is expected to surpass the $7 billion mark by 2019, and legal sales are expected to account for more than half of that figure.