Advised by officials to stay home and self-distance during the coronavirus pandemic, Canadians are stocking up on provisions (we see you, toilet-paper hoarders), and embracing delivery services of all sorts. That includes groceries, wine, prescription drugs, and for many of us, cannabis. (The threat of self-isolation and a dry spell is apparently enough to send many Canadians into panic-buying mode.)
Buying cannabis in the era of legalization looks a little different than it did during prohibition. Weed delivery is another story: While registered patients can order cannabis for medical use for delivery directly from licensed producers, when it comes to recreational cannabis, regulations differ from province to province.
Legal retailers are only allowed to ship within the province in which they operate, and, in most provinces (with the exception of Saskatchewan and Manitoba) privately owned stores are not permitted to deliver cannabis to consumers, only official crown corporations can.
COVID-19 is also complicating the situation: Each province and territory must decide whether to classify cannabis as an essential service (Ontario just declared it non-essential on April 5 and all cannabis stores are now closed for a minimum of two weeks) allowing private retailers to keep their doors open as increasingly strict shelter-in-place orders are enacted.
As if you needed another reason to squirrel away a few extra edibles, Canada Post (not Purolator or other paid couriers — so far) has temporarily suspended its doorstep delivery to prevent spread of the virus. Instead, all Canada Post parcels requiring proof of ID (like cannabis does) will be diverted to local post offices — so you’ll have to brave the outside world to re-up.
So, what is a housebound cannabis consumer to do? Here’s how to find the weed delivery service for you in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and other major cities across Canada.
Weed Delivery In Toronto, Ottawa & Beyond
Ordering online from the Ontario Cannabis Store is the only delivery option in Ontario where this crown corporation holds a monopoly on cannabis delivery.
Those in the Greater Toronto Area can generally take advantage of same-day ($12.17 plus taxes) and next-day shipping ($10.62 plus taxes) via courier. But amid the current pandemic concerns, only a limited number of delivery appointments are available each day. For now, Canada Post delivery is the only option outside of the GTA, Hamilton, Waterloo region, and Guelph.
With nothing to do and nowhere to go, locals are stocking up on cheap and cheerful bulk options like Daily Special, available in two strain options (indica and sativa) for a cost of just $5 per gram (when purchased by the half ounce).
Weed Delivery In Montreal
Montrealers can order cannabis online from the Société Québécoise du Cannabis (SQDC) for a flat $5 delivery fee.
Weed Delivery In Vancouver
On Canada’s west coast, provincial regulators recently loosened restrictions allowing privately-owned dispensaries to offer online and phone ordering for pickup in stores. Unfortunately for Vancouverites stuck inside, it’s business as usual online, and delivery services are solely operated by provincially run BC Cannabis Stores, which uses Canada Post to get product to consumers.
Just note that shipping times and fees will vary across the province and some B.C. postal codes requiring air freight are restricted from ordering vaporizers because of safety concerns.
Weed Delivery In Halifax
The province has seen a 45% increase in cannabis sales in recent weeks, according to cannabis website Leafly. The provincial retailer is the only option when it comes to buying cannabis in Nova Scotia and offers Canada-Post delivery for a $7 flat fee.
Looking to smoke local? Support east-coast growers and wait out the storm with a strain like the Nor’Easter from Nova Scotia’s own licensed producer Skosha. You might not know what day of the week it is after smoking this 20% THC strain, but don’t worry, no one does either.
Elsewhere in the maritimes, delivery times and fees vary. Provincial retailers in Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick both offer shipping within one to three business days but it's more complicated in Newfoundland and Labrador. Online orders from CannabisNL aren't processed by a centralized weed warehouse, but rather fulfilled by the supplier, so order smartly. If you order from multiple licensed producers, you may incur multiple shipping fees and products may ship separately.
Weed Delivery In Calgary and Edmonton
Leading the country with the most cannabis stores per capita (433 licensed cannabis retailers to date), brick-and-mortar dispensaries are flourishing in Alberta. But, due to provincial restrictions, delivery options are not.
Alberta Cannabis is the only legal online store for recreational cannabis in the province. It provides shipping via Canada Post and Purolator for a flat $4.95 per order.
Weed Delivery In Saskatoon
Cannabis delivery options are in no short supply in Saskatchewan where private retailers are allowed to deliver straight to your door with the help of Uber Eats-esque courier services.
Self-isolation might just be the perfect excuse to crack open an infused beverage like Tweed’s newly launched Houndstooth and Soda, a fizzy drink buzzing with 2 mg of THC and less than 1 mg of CBD.
*This story was originally published on March 30, 2020, additional reporting was added.