Travelers to Hawaii are now able to legally purchase medical cannabis. Licensed dispensaries in the state will be able to sell up to four ounces of cannabis to out-of-state residents of the U.S., only if the travelers obtain a medical cannabis card, referred to as a 329 card. The cost to apply for a card is $49.50. The Hawaii Department of Health began accepting online applications from out-of-state residents on March 5.
Travelers who already have a valid state-issued medical cannabis card will be eligible to receive a 329 card in Hawaii. However, applicants must be validate that they are using cannabis for one of Hawaii’s approved medical conditions, which include but are not limited to cancer, epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, severe pain and severe nausea. Applications can be submitted as early as 60 days before the requested start date for the medical cannabis card, and the card remains active for 60 days following the requested date. Registrations are limited to two per year, per patient.
According to a press release by The Department of Health, it will be common for applications to be approved the same day they are submitted. Approved applications can be downloaded onto smartphones and tablets for easy access. Medical cannabis is currently sold legally at dispensaries on the islands of Hawaii, Kauai, Maui and Oahu. Traveling from island to island or back to the mainland with cannabis is strictly prohibited.
Opening the state’s medical cannabis program to travelers will likely have a positive impact on cannabis revenue in the state. According to data released by Kayak, a popular travel booking website, Hawaii was the most popular travel destination in 2018. Just one of Hawaii’s many beautiful islands, Maui, sees approximately 210,000 to 300,000 arrivals each month, according to data from www.hawaii-guide.com. Oahu sees between 450,000 and 570,000 arrivals each month.
Those who depend on medical cannabis for various medical conditions will now be able to travel to Hawaii and obtain safe medication legally.