Image of marijuana related marijuana shirts in Denver
~
Both travel-data service Hopper.com and booking service Hotels.com say they're seeing a major increase in interest from travelers searching for flights and hotel rooms coinciding with the city's annual 420 marijuana celebration, which is taking place the Saturday and Sunday before Monday, April 20.
 
Last year was the first year marijuana was widely – and legally -- available for tourists visiting Colorado, and the marijuana festival on Easter Sunday drew tens of thousands of visitors to the heart of Denver for the festival. Festival participants openly consume marijuana, listen to pot-friendly musicians and sample a wide variety of munchies, sending a massive cloud of pot smoke above the city.
 
The phrase "420" is a longtime code for marijuana users, who work it into dating profiles or post it on signs to show their shared interest. The festival also coincides with the annual Cannabis Cup show, hosted by High Times magazine.
 
Hopper data analyst Tyler Hanson said airline searches to Colorado had been trending down over the past few months as ski season winds down. But there's a 36% increase in searches coinciding with April 17. "What we're seeing here are more people than usual are trying to fly to Colorado on that Friday," he said. "You see a broad decline through March and early April … except for this curious bump that's centered on the 17th of April."
 
Hotels.com reported seeing a 60% jump in hotel searches for Denver for the same weekend, compared to last year. And last year was a 73% increase over 2013, before recreational marijuana stores had opened, the company said.
 
Colorado's tourism officials have generally declined to discuss the impact of marijuana on visitation numbers. But a 2014 state report concluded that tourists were buying up to 90% of the recreational marijuana sold in Colorado's ski towns.
 
Marijuana tourists visiting Colorado quickly run into the harsh reality that there are few places they can legally consume: Public consumption is outlawed, and many hotels also prohibit any kind of smoking. That's given rise to a variety of companies catering to those smokers. Among them: a marijuana-friendly booking service called Bud & Breakfast, and limo services that collect visitors from the airport and take them directly to a pot shop, allowing them to smoke in the back before being delivered to their hotels.
 
A small number of hotels and B&Bs in Colorado offer marijuana-friendly lodging, among them First Inn of Pagosa, in the southwestern Colorado town of Pagosa Springs near Wolf Creek Ski Area. The independent hotel about 276 miles southwest of Denver added "420 Friendly" to its sign in July and has seen business boom since then, workers say.
 
Sean Roby, the founder of Bud & Breakfast, said he's been getting calls from booking agencies around the country because marijuana-friendly lodging can be hard to find. Like Hotels.com, Roby said he's experiencing a significant increase in interest from tourists in connection with the festival.
 
"The 420 holiday is going to see people inundating not only Denver but all the places where marijuana is legal," he said.
 
Hotels.com said while interest in Colorado climbed 51% from 2013 to 2014, there's a similar pattern in Washington state, where legal recreational sales before last summer. There, hotel searches jumped 61% in the second half of the year, compared to the same period the year before, the company said. And tourist interest in Oregon is already rising, even though legal sales won't begin until this summer. Searches for the three-month period after Oregon sales begin have risen 25% statewide, and jumped 64% for Portland, Hotels.com said.
 
~
March 30, 2020

Massachusetts Marijuana Businesses, Struggling To Stay Open,…

Marijuana businesses and advocates are urging Governor Charlie Baker and state legislators to declare recreational marijuana shops "essential," allowing them…
March 30, 2020

Study: CBD Can Improve Effectiveness of Antibiotic…

A new study found that CBD could act as a “helper compound” with traditional antibiotics to more effectively treat staph…
March 30, 2020

Industrial hemp becomes legal in South Dakota…

Industrial hemp and CBD oil are now legal in South Dakota after a yearlong standoff between Gov. Kristi Noem and…
March 27, 2020

Bulking-Up Or Slimming-Down? Here’s How CBD Can…

From easing inflammation to helping with better sleep to ignite more effective workouts, CBD is being used by pro-athletes and…
March 27, 2020

Cannabis Books Worth Socially Isolating With -…

Normally active, social people around the world have been forced to socially isolate themselves in light of the coronavirus pandemic,…
March 27, 2020

‘We’ve been having 4/20 every day’: Oregon…

Take-out for weed? In the wake of coronavirus outbreak, OLCC is temporarily allowing marijuana retailers to do curbside delivery.
March 27, 2020

Illinois: How recreational weed went from illegal…

The state allowing pot shops to stay open despite a “stay-at-home order” that closed other businesses is “a sign of…
March 26, 2020

USDA Approves Iowa Hemp Plan - Cannabis…

Iowa’s industrial hemp plan has received approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and farmers in the state can begin…
March 26, 2020

Study: Legal marijuana products too strong for…

A new study has revealed that most legal marijuana products supplied to medical dispensaries are significantly higher in strength than…
March 26, 2020

Coronavirus could accelerate U.S. cannabis legalization -…

As the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic piles up, U.S. cities and states are set to face significant lost…
March 26, 2020

Letting VA Doctors Recommend Medical Marijuana To…

A bill that would allow doctors at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to recommend medical marijuana to military…