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FAQ & Laws2017-02-15T18:52:32+00:00

Legal Cannabis

This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Cannabis can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.  There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of the reach of children.

If you are over 21 years old and have a valid ID, yes!

A driver’s license, instruction permit, identification card from any U.S. state or territory or province of Canada, U.S. Armed Forces I.D., Merchant Marine ID, Government-Issued Indian Tribal ID card from Washington, or a passport.

Any non-medical patient may have up to 1 ounce, 7 grams of extract for inhalation, 16 ounces of cannabis-infused product (“edibles”), and 72 ounces of cannabis-infused product in liquid form (“edible” beverages).
If you are a medical patient registered with Washington State, you may possess up to 3 times those amounts.

No way! Only licensed retailers may sell cannabis products. Anyone else doing so would violate both WA State and federal law.

Unfortunately, all sales are final. Due to strict laws, there’s very little we can do in the way of returns or exchanges. If you purchased an unsatisfactory product, please let us know so we can avoid those products in the future. But sadly, even if your Super Lemon Haze had a dozen seeds, we can’t offer returns. If you purchase a cartridge, be sure to keep a copy of your receipt as well as the original packaging. If there is a manufacturer malfunction we can exchange the product.

Be advised: while discrete and convenient, cartridges have the highest failure rate of any mode of consumption. Due to this, overlaid with their cost, means cartridges are an inherently higher risk product to purchase. Ask your budtender what they recommend for low-failure rate options and proceed with some caution.

First, make sure your battery is fully charged. Check to make sure you haven’t locked it (to unlock your pen, press the button 3-5 times quickly, depending on the style of pen you own). Do you still have the receipt and original packaging? If you don’t, there is unfortunately nothing we can do. If you still have all these components, bring them back with the cartridge and we will be able to exchange it. As mentioned earlier, cartridges have a higher failure rate than other products (if you bought a gram of flower, you may experience user error, but you bud won’t just be busted). Because they are an electronic device susceptible to manufacturing flaws, they can be a riskier way to consume cannabis.

Contact Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Control Board to encourage legal changes in return and exchange policies so we can eventually offer easier exchanges on faulty products.

No. Some companies provide smell-jars that follow WA State regulation, so there may be a few products you can get a whiff of. But if you were familiar with the way WA medical cannabis was handled, where we could literally squeeze the buds in our hands, this is no longer allowed. According to state law, there can be no open containers of cannabis anywhere on the premises of a dispensary. Not in a bathroom, not in a back room, not in the parking lot. Remember that consuming cannabis is illegal in public.

Crossing state lines with cannabis products is a felony. While more and more states embrace legal access to cannabis, it’s easy to forget how many states still criminalize it. Our federal government still has not descheduled cannabis; we have not yet legalized cannabis federally. Transporting it across state lines can still land you into some seriously sticky situations (and this is the one time we don’t mean sticky in the good sense).

As mentioned before, it is illegal to consume cannabis in public in WA State. Only 25% of hotel rooms in the state can be designated smoke-friendly, but whether those rooms are cannabis friendly will depend on a case-by-case basis. Your best bet is to find a buddy who doesn’t mind if you blaze up in their basement.

Providing that you are over 21, generally you may receive a ticket for about $30, similar to a parking ticket.

The rules for driving with cannabis products are like the rules for driving with alcohol. That means no open container. Products must be stored in the farthest back area of the vehicle. You can get a DUI for driving while stoned. It’s also illegal to chauffeur friends around while they smoke in the back seat.

Yes. All of our locations have been certified to assist medical patients register into the state-wide database and help to select effective products.

Talk with your doctor. If you have conditions which qualify you to use medical cannabis, your doctor may be willing to write you the necessary recommendation. Once you have the paperwork from your doctor’s office (it should be two pages on tamper-proof paper), you can take that to any medically endorsed dispensary and register into the state-wide database. Once you’ve done all that, you may purchase cannabis without paying sales tax, you may purchase up to three times the legal limit, and you may be able to grow your own plants.

Washington State law says that all edibles must be individually wrapped in fully sealed packaging in no more than 10 mg doses. The closest to a candy bar we can get is a bag of individually wrapped chocolates. Gummies are also restricted by the law, due to the concern that they would be inherently more appealing to children—raising the potential for them to fall into the wrong hands.

Yes, our prices are out-the-door, all-taxes-calculated. We’re stoners, we’re not all mathletes.

Because of federal and state law, all cannabis products must be grown and processed in Washington State. So everything we sell is at least moderately local. If local products interest you particularly, The Pot Shop Bellingham – 2119 Lincoln St. – focuses predominantly on Whatcom and Skagit county products.

“Organic” is a federally regulated label. That means that cannabis can’t be officially labeled “organic” until the federal government deschedules it. Coincidently, Washington State law has a relatively short list of acceptable pesticides—shorter even than the list of permissible pesticides for products labeled organic. In fact, one popular medical-turned-recreational brand got in trouble from the state for following organic regulations, which weren’t as strict as what we allow in this state.

Think about produce at the grocery store. Home-grown heirloom tomatoes from an all-natural, organic garden will produce entirely different product than Tomatoes International, who engineer their tomatoes to be vaguely cubical so they can ship across the globe better but have the texture of watermelon. It’s the same as an IPA from a microbrewery versus something Cooers just pumps out. Different grow facilities prioritizes different things, spend their money and resources in different areas, and therefor produce different types of products. Dream Beaver from X Grower could be cheaper for a dozen different reasons: maybe X Grower machine-trims their bud (lower cost than paying human employees to hand trim, but also much less precise); maybe Grower Y spent eight hours per day tending their garden, where Grower X threw some seeds into their backyard and waited to see what would pop up after a few weeks.
Generally when you pay more, you get higher quality. With cannabis, that usually translates to needing to consume less of it at a time, which can end up saving you money in the long run. If you had to smoke two $10 grams to get fully stoned, you might only need to smoke one gram of a $13 or $15 gram.

While percentages can offer some insight into the potency of a product they are not a reliable source to bank on. Until Washington State does more to regulate testing facilities, there is actually very little holding those numbers to science. State law decreed that cannabis being sold must be tested for certain potential health risks and for potency, but those laws did nothing to dictate or regulate how those tests would be designed and carried out. Reports have indicated that testing facilities tend to pad results to ensure the grower returns to that lab for the next batch that needs testing. Until the labs producing these tests are regulated, there is no system to ensure that those numbers reflect anything relevant.
No, not all percentages are 100% wrong 100% of the time, but they are inaccurate enough that you should not rely on them exclusively. If you’re torn between two strains that both visibly look like good quality products at the same price point, let the percentage sway you one way or the other. But remember that just because you purchased the product with the highest percentage, does not mean you purchased the best quality or most potent.
The best way to find the most potent cannabis? ASK YOUR BUDTENDER. They spend an embarrassing amount of their paycheck on all the products you see in our store so they can know first-hand what’s worthwhile. And remember cannabis is subjective, so pay attention to what you like and what works for you, and don’t lean too hard on the total cannabinoids numbers.

YES! Go online to our websites for links to our online merchandise collection!

Yes! Our electronic punch card is available at all our locations. All it takes is an email address (which can be a junk email account, we won’t judge you) to sign up and once you do you’ll start earning rewards points. 50 points gets you 20% off any and all cannabis products. If you work up to 100 points you can take 30% off glass!

Yes we do! Remind us at the register and we can take 10% off non-discounted items (we’re sorry, but deals cannot be stacked).

Unfortunately there is no way for us to legally provide any form of gift card or offer deemed as a “coupon” by the state. Speak with the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Control Board if you have questions or concerns about that policy.

We are cash only. Because cannabis is federally illegal, banks are unwilling to work directly with dispensaries making it impossible for us to take cards. Some dispensaries in the state have set up their register to essentially work as an ATM, giving the impression that they can take cards. In reality, you are still subjected to withdrawal fees from your bank, just as you would at any ATM. In the interest of full transparency, we have not done this, but we do have ATMs available at all of our locations.

Being too high is not a pleasant experience. Luckily, being too stoned doesn’t have the same obvious dangers as being too drunk, for example, does. But anyone who’s eaten the quadruple-dose brownie on accident knows that being too stoned still isn’t fun. If you find yourself too high, there are a few steps you can take to ease yourself into a better state of mind.

      • Drink water. If you’re too high, you are probably really thirsty. Plus a glass of cold water can be grounding.
      • Remind yourself that the cannabis won’t be in your system forever—this, too, shall pass. As unpleasant as it is right now, it gets better.
      • If you can, try to sleep. Most cannabis consumers find that too much simply leads them straight to bed. And sleeping while stoned generally produces more vivid dreams, which is fun.
      • If you can’t sleep, soothing music can also help ground you and pass the time while you wait it out.
      • While not a lot of research has been done, several cultures throughout history say that lemons can help turn down the volume on too-heavy cannabis consumption. So if you’re having a bad time, sip on some lemonade (and maybe flip through pictures of puppies on tumblr or something).

Yes, we have daily specials as well as occasional deals and events. To keep updated on the goings-on around The Joint, subscribe to our Newsletter. Our daily specials are posted on our websites, or feel free to call us to ask us about what’s in stock that’s on sale that day.

This is a more complicated question than people realize. These terms originate from growers classifying the growth of plants. Certain types of plants grow shorter, stockier, broader leaves (Indica), while other plants grow longer, skinnier leaves (Sativa). Those terms have been taken to indicate certain effects of the strain. The best way to remember this difference is: Indica – “in da couch” and Sativa – “Saturday Night”.
Further research has indicated that the effects we generally classify as “sativa” and “indica” have less to do with that classification and more to do with flavor profiles from terpenes. For example, citrusy, grapefruit flavors tend to be stimulating and great for mornings. Whereas lavender or pine flavors tend to be much more relaxing and beneficial for evenings. Terpenes are found in everything, it’s the essence of flavor. That’s why we enjoy grapefruit or lemon in the morning to wake us up. The same is true of your cannabis! If you’re unsure how a certain strain works, ask your budtender!

These are all different words to describe the consistency of cannabis concentrates. Concentrates, or extracts (or dabs, or oil, or errl, or hash—yeah, it has a lot of names) can come in a lot of different shapes and sizes, so to speak. Each extraction method yields vastly different results. “Shatter” refers to a hard consistency that literally shatters when you try to bend it. “Crumbles” tend to be the texture of brown sugar, or drier. Anything wetter than brown sugar and it’s usually labeled a “wax” or even a “sugar wax”. “Pull ‘n’ snap” concentrates do just that: instead of shattering, they can be stretched like taffy until it snaps apart. “Clear” concentrates are the consistency of honey and get their name from their purity. “Clear” oil is derived from a solvent-free, steam distillation. This method can create some of the most potent forms concentrates.  For the most part, all of these labels are fairly subjective. There is no definitive line in the sand between a pull ‘n’ snap and a shatter or a crumble and a wax. In a single yield, the producer can get several different consistencies and those consistencies can change depending on a number of factors, especially temperature. What was once a shatter while sitting on our shelves, could very easily become a pull ‘n’ snap or a full-on soup if left in a pocket or a hot car for long enough.

If we are sold out of a particular product you like, make sure you let your budtender know. Sometimes we run out and don’t order more because we don’t feel like it’s a popular enough product. But the majority of the time, if we run out and haven’t gotten any in for a while, it’s because cannabis is a local crop. Unlike Colgate toothpaste or even international companies like Dole Bananas, each batch of each strain must be grown, harvested, tested, packaged, and sold. Often, a grower harvests all of that strain, so it’ll be another grow period before you can get more of that particular strain by that particular grower. Sometimes growers stagger their harvest so they always have a multitude of different strains on hand, but even still: once the strain is sold out, it must be regrown before we can get any more of it. If you like something, stock up while we still have it, because cannabis—by nature—is an unpredictable industry.