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It seems like the rules and regulations regarding CBD oil depends on whom you ask, which can leave travelers who use CBD oil scratching their heads. Can you take CBD oil on planes? Can you leave it on your carry on or does it have to be checked? The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) rolled out a new policy on CBD oil in July 2019 to help cut through the confusion, but confusion remains. 

Why All the Confusion on CBD Oil?

Some of the confusion about traveling with CBD oil comes because not everyone knows what it is. CBD stands for cannabidiol and makes up one of the fastest-growing health and wellness products in the world. No one could tell you what CBD oil was five years ago, but it’s now expected to become a five-billion dollar industry by the end of 2019. 

The CBD in CBD oil is derived from the cannabis family of plants, normally industrial hemp. Hemp contains many cannabinoids, including both CBD and THC, but CBD does not produce psychoactive effects.  Dr. Peter Grinspoon writes in Harvard Health Publishing of Harvard Medical School. “While CBD is a component of marijuana (one of the hundreds), by itself it does not cause a high.”

Questions about TSA and CBD 

In July 2019, the TSA updated its policy to better match the 2014 and 2018 U.S. Farm Bills that essentially legalized the use, purchase, and transport of CBD products if they’re derived from hemp and contains less than 0.3%. According to TSA policy, CBD products are allowable if they meet the 0.3% threshold. 

Clearly Labelled Products for Flying 

You can fly with CBD oil if it meets the 0.3% THC threshold, but TSA needs to be able to tell your product meets the criteria. Only travel with clearly labeled CBD oil that illustrates lab-verified THC content. In most cases, TSA is worried more about weapons than your CBD oil, but clear labeling will always help during travel. 

The legality of other CBD oil products that are derived from non-hemp sources, like the marijuana plant, or contain more than 0.3% THC vary from state to state. 

Weedmaps director of public relations Travis Rexroad warns CBD flyers that not all states treat CBD the same, even with the federal farm bills. “Unfortunately, there are still some nuances on whether it’s advisable to fly with CBD, varying most widely state by state.” 

William Garvin of the cannabis group at law firm Buchanan Ingersoll and Rooney agrees with Rexroad’s assessment. “It’s okay to drink a Diet Coke in Missouri and drive to Montana with it,” he said. That’s not always the case with CBD, because of conflicting laws.”

The true answer to traveling with organic CBD oil: it depends on the state and traveler. Your CBD oil could be revoked at your destination state depending on local law, but the TSA will likely not touch your products if they’re clearly labeled and meet the criteria. 

Because CBD oil is now widely available across the country, Garvin recommends leaving your CBD oil products at home and purchasing at your destination. Traveling with CBD could put you at legal risks in some states, but thanks to the farm bills, it is allowable by TSA.  

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