Can You Bring Weed on a Cruise Ship?

Updated

by Marcello

With countries worldwide taking a progressive stance towards marijuana, and legalization in many US states, you might be wondering if you can bring weed on a cruise ship.

This guide will tell you everything you need to know about smoking marijuana on a cruise.

We’ll break down the official rules and the consequences to those who break them.

Can You Bring Weed on a Cruise Ship?

You cannot bring weed on a cruise ship. All cruise lines prohibit passengers from bringing cannabis products, including both recreational and medical, on their vessels.

Cruise lines that depart from the United States operate under US federal laws. While many states have moved to decriminalize and legalize marijuana on a state level, weed is still illegal to possess at the federal level.

Even if the cruise ship departs from a state where weed is legal, passengers cannot bring the drug on board the vessel.

So, although you can smoke cigarettes on a cruise ship, you cannot smoke cannabis.

Can I Bring CBD, Delta 8, a Vape Pen, Edibles, or Other Infused Products on a Cruise?

Cruise lines do not allow marijuana and cannabis-related products on the ship.

The policies set out by cruise lines are clear; real and synthetic marijuana in all its forms is forbidden on a cruise ship.

The policy includes buds, oils, vape pens, vape cartridges, and edibles.

While items like Delta 8 have a quasi-legal status in many states, they too are banned from cruise ships.

As a rule, if it has marijuana in it, real or synthetic, it is not allowed on a cruise ship.

The rules are not limited to products that contain THC. Cruise lines also prohibit CBD products.

Cruise Line Policies on Marijuana

There is conflict on the legal status of marijuana at the state and federal levels.

Many states have chosen to legalize marijuana for medical and personal use. However, consumption and possession of cannabis is illegal under US federal law.

Cruise lines that depart the US must follow federal laws. As such, even cruises that depart states with legal pot status must prohibit the use of marijuana.

The ship isn’t the only place where pot is prohibited.

Cruise lines have policies that prohibit the use of weed on the ship, at the cruise terminal, in ports of call, and during shore excursions.

In other words, don’t expect to use weed at any time during your cruise vacation.

Royal Caribbean

“In no event shall any Passenger bring on board the Vessel or check-in, or in connection with the Land Tour, any illegal controlled substances (including medical marijuana). Marijuana possession and/or use, including medical marijuana, and possession or use of any illegal drugs, is strictly prohibited in many jurisdictions visited and on the Vessel at all times, as well as in terminals, during shore excursions or any other part of the cruise, regardless of any local, state, or other laws which might permit use or possession of marijuana.”

Royal Caribbean Cruise/Cruisetour Ticket Contract

Carnival

“Carnival recognizes that some states in the U.S. have fully legalized the use of recreational and/or medical marijuana. However, cruise lines are required to follow U.S. federal law, which strictly prohibits possession and use of marijuana and other illegal, controlled substances. Since all cruise terminals in the U.S. are federal facilities, the terminals and our ships are drug-free zones.”

Carnival Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line

“No illegal drugs or other illegal substances including but not limited to medical marijuana are allowed onboard or may be utilized during a Norwegian Cruise Line vacation, including during transfers to and from ships, inside terminals, during shore excursions or at our private island.”

Norwegian Cruise Line Guest Conduct Policy

Virgin Voyages

“All illegal drugs, non-prescribed controlled substances, medically prescribed marijuana or synthetic marijuana and CBD products are prohibited.”

Virgin Voyages

Can You Sneak Weed on a Cruise?

Despite the possible consequences of possessing or consuming weed, many passengers still try to sneak the drug onto the cruise ship.

We don’t recommend doing it.

While it might seem easy to sneak weed onto a cruise ship, the consequences, passengers caught in possession of pot face severe consequences. It’s just not worth the risk.

Consider the case of a Pennsylvania cruiser caught with two bags of pot while boarding Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas. A subsequent search of her cabin found marijuana pipes, cannabis oil, and an electric grinder. She was arrested by the Bermuda authorities and pleaded guilty to four counts of drug possession. The woman was fined $4,000, which she had to pay on the spot under the threat of jail time.

After paying the fine, she was sent home.

If you are thinking about sneaking weed onto a cruise ship, consider that, among other possible charges, bringing marijuana into international waters or a foreign county is drug trafficking.

What Happens if You Get Caught With Weed on a Cruise?

Security staff with the walkie-talkie from the back patrolling cruise ship Pacific Princess

Cruise lines outline several consequences for passengers caught with weed on a cruise.

Consequences may include confiscation of the weed, a permanent ban from the cruise line, fines, immediate disembarkation, and denial of boarding. Cruise lines may report you to the local authorities depending on the ship’s location.

The exact consequences will vary, but many passengers have reported seeing other guests under arrest or kicked off the ship for possession of marijuana.

Passengers who violate the laws of any jurisdiction are subject to being reported to law enforcement or customs authorities, arrest and prosecution. Passengers who bring on board dangerous items, marijuana in any form, or any illegal drugs or controlled substances are also subject to immediate disembarkation or denial of boarding. Passengers shall have no claim for refund, loss, damage, inconvenience, or compensation whatsoever under any of these circumstances.

Royal Caribbean Cruise/Cruisetour Ticket Contract

Can You Smoke Weed at Port?

One of many famous Amsterdam coffeshops, where cannabis (marijuana) is sold for private recreational use

Some cruises stop in countries where weed is legal.

For example, in Amsterdam, it is legal to consume weed in the city’s famous “coffee shops.”

The menus feature pre-rolled joints, loose grass, and edibles. Just remember, there’s no takeout.

As we’ve stated, it is against the cruise line’s policy to smoke weed in port. However, there is a reduced chance that you will get in trouble.

Some cruise ports, such as Alaska and Amsterdam, offer organized shore excursions with a cannabis theme.

If you consume cannabis in a port where it is legal, then return to the ship a few hours later, it would be nearly impossible for the cruise line to know.

While security will check your bags to ensure you don’t bring cannabis on the ship, they don’t have any checks to see if you are high.

As long as you don’t cause a disturbance, you should be ok. But, as it is against the cruise line policy, there’s always a risk.

An important note, while the Bahamas and Caribbean are known for their pot-friendly culture, weed is illegal in most countries. Even in Jamaica, smoking weed is illegal and punishable by a fine.

If you plan to smoke marijuana in port, check the local laws. While local authorities turn a blind eye towards locals, they are known to target tourists.

Locals might harass tourists by offering to sell small amounts of weed only to alert local authorities. Passengers caught breaking the law are forced to pay heavy fines under the threat of jail time.

The Bahamas has a reputation for targeting tourists as a source of revenue.

What About Smoking Pot on Alaskan Cruises?

Princess Cruise ship docked in Juneau Alaska
Photo by Danika Perkinson on Unsplash

Alaska has a progressive stance toward cannabis, with adults able to use the drug recreationally. You may be able to consume weed at ports of call in Alaska.

Remember, if you decide to consume pot while on a cruise in Alaska, you will be doing so against the cruise contract. It’s unlikely that the cruise line will catch you, but you should be aware of the risk.

Alaskan cruises often depart from Seattle, Washington, or Vancouver, Canada. Washington state and Canada have legalized weed, but that doesn’t mean you can take it on a cruise ship.

Washington state is one of the most progressive regarding the legalization of marijuana. Under state law, weed is legal for recreational use.

And if you depart from Vancouver, you should know that the use of marijuana became legal in Canada on October 17, 2018.

Sine most Alaskan cruises depart and return to cities where recreational use is legal; you might think you can bring it on your cruise.

But you’d be wrong.

No matter where a ship departs, or the destinations it visits, weed is not allowed on cruise ships.

Although Alaska and Washington have state laws that allow the recreational use of marijuana, it is still illegal at the federal level.

FAQs

Is Weed Legal in the Bahamas

Weed is illegal in the Bahamas and is punishable by up to 10 years of prison and a fine of up to $120,000.

Is Weed Legal in Jamaica

Weed is illegal in Jamaica. Despite Jamaica’s reputation as a cannabis haven, possession of marijuana is not legal.

Is Medical Marijuana Allowed on a Cruise?

Medical marijuana is not allowed on a cruise ship. Cruise ships are required to follow federal laws. Although medical marijuana might be legal in your state, it is still illegal at the federal level and not allowed on a cruise ship.

If you use medical marijuana, cruise lines suggest asking your doctor for an alternative to use during your cruise vacation.

Do Cruise Lines Check for Marijuana When You Board?

Cruise ship security teams have various procedures to check luggage for banned and illegal substances. The security screening for passengers and luggage may involve using dogs to sniff out drugs.

What if I am High When I Return to the Ship From Port?

If you get high in port (where legal) and return to the ship, it is unlikely that you will face any consequences unless you are disorderly.

Security doesn’t check if passengers are high when they return to the ship. That said using weed in port is against cruise lines’ policies. If you are caught smoking in a cruise port, you may face consequences.

Can I Bring CBD Oil on a Cruise?

Many states have relaxed laws on CBD. However, cruise lines have broad policies which include CBD as a prohibited substance.

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Author

Marcello

I’ve been cruising since I was 11 years old. I love the freedom that cruising provides, meeting new people, and exploring amazing new ships. I love to share my passion for cruising and travel with readers.

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