It’s happened to tens of thousands of travelers since recreational legalization first began. You arrive in a rec-legal state. You dash to the nearest dispensary to the airport and stock up on allllll the strains (and a really sweet pipe). You get back to your hotel, ready to get this vacation started. Then you remember that you can’t smoke in your room…or at the park…or in a bar…or really anywhere, for that matter. Cue AirBnb.
Thanks to strict policies in legal states barring cannabis smoking, dabbing, and vaping outside of private residences, many cannabis enthusiasts — particularly those traveling specifically as canna-tourists — have turned to AirBnb to find a private residence-away-from-home to consume in compliance with local laws. But is this really allowed?
Answer: It depends on the location and the host, because the online lodging site has no official policy on cannabis consumption.
AirBnb’s silence in this regard has been cued by the fact that cannabis is still illegal federally. Andrew W., a representative of AirBnb, cites the patchwork of state laws as the reason there’s no filter for cannabis-friendly listings. “We cannot create a filter for this at the moment unfortunately,” says Andrew, noting that “because it is not legal in a lot of places, we could have a scenario where people are putting up 420-friendly in areas where it is illegal.”
It’s worth noting that AirBnb has also been quoted expressly as not being against cannabis, saying: “Due to the changing laws in regards [to] its usage, Airbnb has no policy against the use and/or consumption of marijuana” (emphasis added). Individual hosts may note that their listing allows cannabis consumption without having it removed by AirBnb, and many hosts do exactly that in order to attract more guests and offer cannabis consumers a home away from home.
How to Find a 420-Friendly AirBnb
Although many hosts do allow cannabis consumption, it can be tricky to track them down on the AirBnb website itself thanks to the absence of a “420-friendly” filter. Until the website implements one, AirBnb recommends using an outside search engine such as Google to search for keyword combinations like “cannabis” and “AirBnb” in a specific location to turn up better results. You may need to try a few different searches, since some owners call their homes “420-friendly,” others say “cannabis-friendly,” still others say “green-friendly” or “marijuana-friendly,” and so on. Additional keywords to try include old-school euphemisms like “Mary Jane.”
Another trick to try if you’re searching within the AirBnb website: Add a “Smoking Allowed” filter to your search, then scan individual listings to see what kind of smoking they’re referring to. This works best if you’re already searching in an area known for its legal cannabis culture, like Seattle, Portland, or Denver.
While you’re at it, it’s also worth sending AirBnb some feedback on their cannabis policy and suggesting that they add a filter for cannabis-friendly residences, which you can do here.
Information on hosts’ cannabis consumption policies is occasionally made obvious in the title of the listing, but more often appears in the listing’s main Description or House Rules sections. Some listings even drop in extra hints, like this Breckenridge townhouse with a $420-per-night price tag. Most commonly, these listings appear in states where cannabis is already legal, and most hosts agree that they wouldn’t list outright as cannabis-friendly if cannabis weren’t legal statewide.
That said, some hosts may work hints at their cannabis stance into their listing regardless of its local legality. “If cannabis weren’t legal in Washington then I wouldn’t list that I was cannabis friendly … [but] I would probably still keep some of the suggestive marketing, like in my statement that at the Winston House we welcome and embrace consciousness in all its forms,” says Sebastian, whose elegant Seattle listing is among the most popular cannabis-friendly lodging options worldwide.
Is There an “AirBnb of Cannabis”?
There’s been a lot of buzz about finding the AirBnb of the cannabis world, and sites do indeed exist for that purpose. Bud and Breakfast, TravelTHC, The Travel Joint, and more all specialize in 420-friendly rentals, though the rules will vary from place to place (e.g.: some will greet you with complimentary cannabis and let you consume anywhere, while others only allow you to bring your own cannabis and smoke in designated areas).
Still, these cannabis-specific sites are young and somewhat niche, and if you’re looking to stay in a truly stunning abode, the options available aren’t always on par with those on AirBnb. Our advice? Browse all of these sites to find the best bet for your unique group, goals, and budget.