Hope I can ask this. It's about pot.

From time to time in my adult life, I’ve carried pot on my person or in luggage on flights and never had any trouble. (Nary a thought went through my head about it back then.)

Now, I haven’t done it for a while. Maybe not since 9/11 even.

I have to fly domestically this weekend and I’m wondering, can you still take pot with you on a plane? It would be like 1/8 ounce and a one hitter (metal). I could split–put hitter in luggage, pot with me.

Any recent anecdotes you’ve heard? Any direct experience? Are dogs going to spring on… me… ?

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I’ve heard anecdotes (like this one) that the TSA generally doesn’t really care, but that’s not to say they couldn’t tip off the local authorities who do care. It probably depends on how busy the TSA are and/or how cozy their relationship is with the local authorities. I personally wouldn’t risk it.

I flew with edibles (Clearly Marked) in my checked luggage last month, Durango to Boston.

I think taking pot on a plane is a bad idea. I’m sure people get away with it, but I imagine it would be mighty inconvenient to get caught.

The US Department of Justice (Drug Enforcement Agency) classifies cannabis as a Schedule I controlled substance (ACSCN:7360) with the appropriate penalties depending on quantity and context. While the Transportation Security Administration is technically a law enforcement agency, the TSO “screeners” are not regarded as law enforcement agents in the normal context (no authority to arrest or use force), but they are required to inform the applicable law enforcement authority (generally airport or municipal law enforcement) of any violations of laws they observe.

While local and state regulations in some areas may permit the legal possession of cannabis, this does not apply within the areas controlled by security checkpoints. Except that these checkpoints are now manned by federal officers rather than screeners privately employed by the airport, this hasn’t changed since 2001.

Are you really unaware that the DoJ still views marijuana as a highly controlled substance, the unlicensed possession of which it vigorously prosecutes at nearly every opportunity?


Am I “really unaware”? Well, yes, I guess I am, or was. Should I feel stupid or ashamed? That’s why I asked the fucking question.

Srsly, just the anecdotes and thoughts on this, let alone the legal statute, is heading me towards abandoning the idea. I can probably get through Thanksgiving without it.


The basic change since 9/11 is the security people screen passengers and luggage a lot more thoroughly than they used to. They’re looking for explosives and weapons but the same searching for those items is also likely to find drugs. And while they might not have been looking for your drug stash, there’s no reason why they wouldn’t arrest you if they find it.

This is all true, but the question is who’s going to arrest you? The DEA is interested in large scale trafficking and distribution, but there’s not really any federal law enforcement agency that cares about someone with a small amount of pot in their luggage on a domestic flight. If the local cops on either end don’t care (officially or unofficially) you’re probably pretty safe, although again I personally wouldn’t risk it.

Anecdotal, FWIW. I did this about 10 years ago. Security was maybe a little less efficient then, but still pretty intense. I was carrying the weed on my person (never mind where), and the pat-down search stopped about 1/2 inch away from it, while yrs truly shat several bricks. I got away with it, but would not care to repeat the experience. Should I ever again feel the need to travel with weed, I would stash it in my luggage or better yet ship it separately to myself at my destination.

You might end up getting released in the end because nobody cared enough to follow through. But you most likely would be held in custody while the matter was being discussed and you’d miss your flight. And I’m guessing you won’t get a refund on your ticket if the reason you missed your flight was because you got arrested for trying to smuggle stuff on to the plane.

You could always ask Paris Hilton to help you.

Airport arrests for possession of small amounts pop up in the media from time to time: Kansas City. Hawaii. El Paso. Los Angeles. JFK. Tucson. Fairbanks, AK.


At the risk of intimidating myself… I was not, repeat not, carrying dope in,errr…“private parts”. I had 8 or 10 small tightly-rolled joints, wrapped into flat-pacs and taped to the top of each foot just behind the toes. Was wearing fairly heavy cotton socks, security insisted I strip to underwear and socks for pat-down. It was thorough, but the officer stopped patting at about the instep and missed the slight bulge in an unlikely place. As I said, 'twas a one-time thing never to be repeatied.

Nemo, Knowing the work you do, I suppose you’re familiar with such tactics. If not, I apologize in advance to any of your clients whose playhouse I might have disrupted:p

Question – is this medical, or recreational? Because if it’s the latter, really, is it worth finding out?

I don’t smoke pot and I must say even I am aware of this.

I’m retired now. But back when I was working Ms Hilton’s trick wouldn’t have worked at my workplace. No part was considered private when we searched.

Really, just buy some when you get there. I don’t know of anyplace in the country where pot isn’t available. (If the prisoners in ultra-max prisons can get pot …)

If you don’t know where to get it when there, ask any teenager.

‘I had a friend who’ took about an eighth of hash (solid) on a domestic flight in the UK. It was in my tobacco tin. His! His tin. This was c.2001, so there wasn’t the levels of security you see now. Nevertheless, there was a metal detector, so keys and tin and such went in the tray. The security officer said “That’s just a tobacco tin?”
“Can I have a look in it?”

My friend (to whom I do bear a passing resemblence…) tilted the tin to roll the hash to one end, and opened it one-handed to reveal the other end, full of tobacco. I don’t know what the security bod was looking to rule out - but I’m pretty sure it could fit in the other half of a tobacco tin. I like to think from the look on his face (and from the look of…my friend) that he knew full well what was in the other end…

I don’t think I’d risk it again. And nor does my friend. :wink:

The likelihood of being caught is probably slim, but the consequences would be so dire, do the benefits really outweigh them?

Then you win.