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how to buy from a dispensary

While most dispensaries can serve both kinds of customers — medical and recreational — generally there are differences between the two operations.

It’s a good idea to start developing a relationship with your budtenders. As they get to know you, they’ll be able to make future recommendations.


With this card, you save on the overall cost of your purchase, state taxes, and you have access to more potent forms of marijuana. If buying medical marijuana, also bring your physician’s recommendation with you.

It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous the first time you visit a dispensary because you don’t know how to buy Marijuana.

First-time visitors will benefit from our outstanding customer service. Our staff is dedicated to personalizing your experience and helping you leave with the best product for your needs.

Some brick and mortar dispensaries also allow customers to call their marijuana order in advance and then come pick it up, letting them skip the often long lines at some licensed dispensaries. This is helpful if you are in a hurry and already know what you want. As simple as grabbing a take-out order, picking up your marijuana preorder will get you going on your way without the wait.

While all of these methods have their own unique benefits, what is most convenient and comfortable for you will likely be the best choice. Reference our dispensary guide to learn more about finding a dispensary.

Physical shops are a popular way for many consumers to buy their cannabis products. Customers can see the range of products for sale, check out the packaging, smell the different strains of cannabis flower, and ask as many questions as it takes to find the best products.

Choosing Between a Shop, Pickup, or Delivery

You can learn more about finding the best dispensary near you in our dispensary guide.

State marijuana laws will vary regarding what is needed in order for people from outside of the state to purchase marijuana, but in general, all you need to do is find a local recreational dispensary and show your ID. Once you do, you are allowed to freely purchase a variety of marijuana and cannabis products.

You’ll also want to make sure you have enough cash on hand to cover your purchase. It is rare for a marijuana dispensary to take credit cards, though some do. Most dispensaries that are cash-only have an ATM on site, but fees for use can be high. Plan ahead, check the online menus for the dispensary, and bring enough money to cover your purchase.

Once you arrive at your dispensary, you’ll probably be met at the front door by a security guard. They will likely want to wand you down with a metal detector. This isn’t an indication that a shop isn’t safe — it is simply a precaution and a necessary reality in a marijuana industry that is largely still cash-based.

Buying weed is a bit different than going to a liquor store and waiting your turn in line to buy a six-pack or a bottle of wine. Regulations in most states require that cannabis dispensaries only serve one customer at a time. Depending on the time of day you go in, you could be there a while. And like most retail establishments, weekends are usually busier than weekdays.

Your budtender is there to help you have the best weed buying experience you can. There are no stupid questions, and in most dispensaries, your budtender is going to be happy to help you out. Ask them what strain is best for your needs. Want something to help you sleep? Tell them that. Looking for a strain that’s good for spring cleaning? Let them know. Inquire about their favorite strains and why they like them. Let your budtender be your guide when you buy weed. It’s what they’re there for.

Whether you’re 21, 81, or somewhere in-between, have your ID ready when you walk in the door. Pretty much everyone gets carded buying weed at a dispensary, whether they look old enough or not. Forget your ID and you’re going home empty-handed.

Ask your Cannabis Consultant Questions

What is your reason for buying weed? Yes, we know you want to smoke it. But these days there are countless different strains to choose from that all do different things. Check out our extensive list of Cannabis Strains to see what type of marijuana is best for your personal needs. Here you can search strains by popularity, time of use, common uses, and different effects you’d like to feel.

If you’ve never bought weed before, it can be a little overwhelming stepping foot into a dispensary for the first time. Your first time purchasing cannabis should be an enjoyable experience. When you go in prepared and knowing what to expect, buying pot will be much more pleasurable indeed.

Unfortunately, not every visit to a dispensary is a positive experience. It’s normal to be nervous but feeling intimidated or unsatisfied with your budtender is another story. If you’re not feeling it, you’re not feeling it. And by no means are you obligated to make a purchase just because you walked in the dispensary door. If you don’t want to buy from this particular place, there are plenty of other shops that sell weed. Politely thank the budtender for their help and be on your merry way.

In an age where we buy pretty much everything on a debit or credit card, cannabis purchases are done strictly in cash. Most dispensaries recognize this and will have an ATM machine on site. Not all of them do though and even if they do, you’re bound to be charged a service fee for using an ATM that isn’t your bank. Be prepared and take cash out of the bank before you arrive. Not only will you be prepared, but you’ll avoid paying those ridiculous service fees.