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Cannabis Clinic Vs Dispensary – What’s The Difference

Quite often, a lot of people get confused when it comes to distinguishing between a cannabis clinic and a dispensary. Identifying between the two is very essential especially if you are planning on making your first visit to either of the two.

Despite the two being sources of cannabis, a cannabis clinic greatly differs from a dispensary. Here are the key differences to help you identify one from the other. This confusion is likely to arise now that both medical and recreational marijuana has been legalized in a couple of states. This has led to the opening up of cannabis joints in nearly all streets near you.

Let’s Start with What a Cannabis Clinic Is

A cannabis clinic does more than supply marijuana to patients suffering from different conditions. It also gives information and counselling services on how to use cannabis for medicinal purposes. Unlike in dispensaries, a cannabis clinic has a similar layout to that of a doctor’s office. It will probably have a waiting room, a doctor’s office and all other elements that fit the clinic description.



Cannabis clinics are regulated and taxed differently than dispensaries. You can thus expect the prices to vary. You should also note that in a cannabis clinic, you can’t purchase marijuana without the appropriate documentation such as a medical marijuana recommendation.

When it comes to buying cannabis from a clinic, you are required to register in a particular clinic. This is a whole lot different from dispensaries where you can just waltz into any joint and buy some marijuana.

The registration ensures monitoring your consumption for both medicinal and legal purposes. You must also have attained the state required age limit to use medicinal marijuana.

What about A Dispensary?

A dispensary, on the other hand, is an umbrella term that is used to describe the different storefronts selling marijuana mostly for recreational purposes. A dispensary is ideally a distribution point of marijuana from vendors to clients.

Unlike cannabis clinics, dispensaries are less formal. But, they also operate under the legal framework of the state in which they are in. For instance, to purchase cannabis from a dispensary, you must be over 21 years of age. You also need to furnish the budtender with either a passport or an ID, and it must be valid.

Smelling Marijuana

Moreover, in a dispensary, you can expect to find menus of what they have in stock. Some dispensaries also showcase the different buds they have available on glass counters.

As much as a dispensary differs from a cannabis clinic, the budtender can give you recommendations on the best strains or buds.

But, you can’t solely rely on the advice from a budtender. If you intend to gain medical relief from cannabis, then it is only a doctor who can recommend the ideal strain and dosage for your condition.

Now that you can distinguish between a cannabis clinic and a dispensary, you can confidently visit either of the two knowing what is expected of you. Irrespective of the cannabis outlet you are visiting, always ensure that you carry the relevant documentation to avoid any inconveniences. And, you can feel free to ask questions since both cannabis clinics, and dispensaries aim to provide a suitable strain for your needs whether they are medical or recreational.