Amid the coronavirus outbreak, Canada Post is no longer delivering packages that require a signature or proof of age to customers’ doors. For the majority of Canada’s cannabis consumers, that means they will need to pick up their packages at a nearby post office.
Recreational consumers living in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and select regions of Ontario, can still get service to their door, even on the same day.
In January, the Ontario Cannabis Store launched a pilot to provide same-day and next-day delivery in the Greater Toronto Area, Hamilton, Waterloo Region and Guelph, with plans for future expansion to other areas of the province.
The OCS charges a same-day shipping fee of $12.17, plus HST, and packages are delivered between 5:00 p.m. and 10 p.m. Customers are notified by text message when their package is en route. The rest of the province can still order via Canada Post Xpress, delivery usually occurs within one to three business days but rural areas of Ontario can have wait times as long as ten days.
Last November, the Société Québécoise du Cannabis (SQDC) announced a similar pilot project to see if a same-day delivery option is feasible. The pilot, expected to last six to nine months, aims to deliver about 400 packages a week in Montreal. If it proves successful, the service area could be expanded.
Cannabis customers in Manitoba and Saskatchewan are able to get same-day delivery from a range of retailers, predominantly through Pineapple Express Delivery, a service that provides both business-to-business and business-to-consumer deliveries.
In those provinces, businesses that have a brick-and-mortar retail licence are also permitted to sell cannabis online. Retail stores are responsible for arranging cannabis delivery. By using third-party apps like Super Anytime, customers can order direct to their door. The hope, for businesses like Super Anytime and Pineapple Express, is that other provinces will loosen their regulations around delivery in the future.
Delta 9, Tokyo Smoke, Garden Variety and Tweed all offer the same-day delivery in Winnipeg.
In Saskatchewan, a wider range of retailers across the province offer same-day delivery, including Prairie Records, Westleaf, Fire and Flower, and others. The regions of Moose Jaw, Martensville, Regina, Prince Albert, Warman and Saskatoon all offer same-day delivery options.
The options for online legal ordering for the rest of the country usually range from two days to two weeks, depending on location.
Cannabis New Brunswick offers a one-day turnaround for orders throughout the province, as long as the orders are placed before 2:30 p.m., Monday to Friday.
In Alberta, retailers are not permitted to deliver cannabis, according to regulations from the Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Commission.
Next door in British Columbia, delivery time ranges from two to seven days, depending on the location. In 20 regions of the province that require air freight, customers are restricted from ordering vaporizers that contain lithium-ion batteries.
An alcohol delivery app, Designed Delivery, that launched in Kelowna last year, is hoping to be able to deliver cannabis in the future, as well, if future BC regulations allow it.
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Written by Sam Riches