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Can I Use My Medical Card In Another State?

Posted by Tobias Corelli on May 02, 2023

A medical marijuana card allows its holder to purchase cannabis from designated dispensaries, often at discounted or tax-free rates. Since the cost of medical marijuana is lower than recreational, sometimes significantly, this is a big help to those who rely on marijuana for its medical purposes to help them treat their qualifying medical conditions. Medical marijuana cards are issued at the state level and, for the most part, are only for use within that state.

But what happens when you find yourself traveling or out of state? There are many benefits to having a medical marijuana card, and medical marijuana patients still need access to cannabis, regardless of where they are, but buying weed with an out-of-state card for marijuana isn’t as simple as it should be. Here we’ll explore states that accept out-of-state medical cards, known as medical marijuana reciprocity states.

Can I Travel With Medical Marijuana?

In short, you cannot travel across state lines with marijuana, even if it's medical and you have a medical marijuana card. The reason is simple: marijuana is still classified as a Schedule 1 controlled substance, making it illegal at the federal level. This makes transporting marijuana across state lines highly illegal and a federal offense. This is why it's so important to know about 

the states that accept out-of-state medical cards in case you find yourself in this situation. While you won't be able to travel with medical marijuana, you may still be able to acquire it if you’re visiting a state with medical marijuana reciprocity. Let's explore medical marijuana reciprocity states to better understand the options.

States That Accept Out Of State Medical Cards

There are 13 states that have some form of medical marijuana reciprocity:


Recreational marijuana is legal in Arizona, allowing adults to purchase 2.5 ounces. Still, If you’re a visiting qualifying patient in the state of Arizona, then you can purchase medical marijuana on the condition that:  your qualifying condition in your home state must also be listed under Arizona law; and you must not be a resident of Arizona or have resided in Arizona for less than 30 days. 


Visitors to Arkansas can purchase marijuana with an out-of-state medical card if they provide proof of their out-of-state medical marijuana registration and fill out a visiting patient form.


Recreational cannabis is legal in Maine, so there’s no need to worry here. But Maine still recognizes the same protections in Maine as in your home state.


Massachusetts is another state that allows recreational marijuana, so you do not need your out-of-state medical marijuana card. Oddly Massachusetts does not recognize out-of-state medical marijuana cards but does offer a higher possession limit of 1 ounce for medical marijuana card holders, even if from another state.


In Michigan, recreational cannabis is legal for adults aged 21 and over. Similar to Massachusets, reciprocity allows a medical marijuana holder to possess a larger amount of cannabis (2.5 ounces), however, it's up to the dispensaries to decide if they will recognize an out-of-state medical marijuana card. 


In Missouri, those with a valid medical marijuana card from another state can legally possess the same legal limit of cannabis in Missouri, which is 4 ounces.


Maybe Montana is for lovers as they’re a cannabis-friendly state that offers full reciprocity of a medical marijuana card holder's protections under their home state, as long as your card is still valid.


Nevada offers full medical marijuana reciprocity, providing out-of-state visitors the same rights as Nevada residents.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire's medical marijuana reciprocity is similar to Arizona’s in that they will only recognize your medical marijuana status If your home state’s qualifying condition is on New Hampshire’s qualifying condition list. You still won't be able to purchase medical marijuana, but you will be allowed to possess medical marijuana within the state.

New Jersey

New Jersey legalized recreational marijuana, so there’s not too much to worry about here. New Jersey also recognizes other states’ medical marijuana cards and offers reciprocity for up to six months while visiting the state as long as they have a valid medical marijuana card from their home state and certify in New Jersey for cannabis by a New Jersey doctor.


As long as visitors fill out the Temporary Patient Application, Oklahoma will recognize other states’ medical marijuana cards and allow holders to purchase medical marijuana. 


Just like Arizona and New Hampshire, Utah will only recognize an out-of-state medical card if the visitors’ qualifying conditions are listed in Utah’s qualifying conditions. However, if you’re moving to Utah, your home state’s MMJ card will remain valid for 45 days before you have to register for a Utah medical marijuana card.

Washington, D.C.

Washington D.C. only offers reciprocity to medical marijuana cards from certain states with similar medical cannabis requirements. 

States That Don’t Allow Reciprocity

If the state you're visiting was not listed above, you may be out of luck. Below is a list of states that do not offer reciprocity for medical marijuana cards. However, some of these states do allow for recreational marijuana consumption.

  • Alaska (recreational allowed)
  • California (recreational allowed)
  • Colorado (recreational allowed)
  • Illinois (recreational allowed)
  • Hawaii
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • New York (recreational allowed)
  • Ohio
  • Oregon (recreational allowed)
  • Pennsylvania
  • Puerto Rico
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont (recreational allowed)
  • Virginia
  • Washington (recreational allowed)

Can You Use A Medical Card In Another State

When it comes to medical marijuana reciprocity, the rules will vary from state to state. Until cannabis is reclassified to be made legal at the federal level, national travel with cannabis and the ability to purchase medical marijuana out-of-state will hang in limbo. If you’re a medical marijuana patient with a valid card, be sure to research the state you're visiting and its medical marijuana reciprocity policies. Since recreational cannabis is legal in Illinois, you can always visit our dispensary near O'Hare airport for any canna goodies if you are an of-age adult. A little bit of searching can go a long way to help keep you safe when buying medical marijuana out-of-state.

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