What should you ask a budtender?
Purchasing Cannabis

Questions To Ask During Your First Dispensary Visit

Cannabis shops can be intimidating if you’re a new consumer, but there are some questions to ask during your first dispensary visit that can help staff figure out a good product match for you. Budtenders, the friendly and knowledgeable staff at your neighbourhood cannabis shop, are armed with knowledge and ready to help you along your cannabis journey.

Even if it’s not your first time using cannabis – just your first time at a dispensary – there are questions to ask during your first visit to help things along.

One thing your budtender can’t do is determine the best method of consumption for you. Everyone has different reactions to cannabis, so while they can point you in a certain direction or make suggestions, your budtender likely won’t tell you with 100% certainty that there’s a perfect product for you.

Here are some questions to ask during your first dispensary visit.

What would you recommend for a new consumer?

There are certain products more suited for first-time consumers, such as strains with equal or higher amounts of CBD to THC. Asking this question does two things. It lets your budtender know you’re new to the cannabis landscape, and also helps them narrow down what they’re going to recommend. If you tell your budtender you’re a new consumer and they point you to a product with an extremely high THC potential, it might be find to someone else.

How long have you been a budtender?

This question is really for your own peace of mind. Knowing the experience level of the person helping you can help you gauge their advice. Every budtender is knowledgeable, but one who has been in the industry for 10+ years might have more to offer than one who has been there two weeks. Either way, they’re going to do their best to help you find the right fit for you.

What will I feel after consuming this strain?

Since everyone reacts differently to cannabis, your budtender can’t guarantee any effects. However, they can use anecdotal evidence to give you an idea of the average person’s reaction. For example, some people find indica-dominant strains to be more sedating and sativa-dominant strains to be more energizing. There isn’t any hard scientific evidence to back these terms up, but they can start to point you in the right direction.

What do these THC and CBD percentages mean?

Your budtender will be able to help you read a label and understand what the THC and CBD content means. Knowing the difference between THC and CBD can help narrow down what products you want to try. For people wanting to experience a classic high, then THC is the way to go. For those less interested in that high, then a product with more CBD than THC could be beneficial. Your budtender will explain these things to you and help you understand the percentages on the label. This way, you’ll know what to look for during your next visit.

Do I need any accessories with this?

Some products, like chocolate or capsules, don’t need any additional accessories in order to consume them. However, things like dried flower require other accessories to get them ready. It could be a bong, grinder card, rolling papers – whatever it is, you want to make sure you have it before you get home. It would be pretty disappointing to go through the whole process of purchasing cannabis only to get home and not have what you need!

Have you tried this/What do you recommend?

Most budtenders are cannabis consumers themselves, and odds are they’ve tried the product they’re showing you. If not, they likely know someone who has. Asking budtenders their personal opinions and recommendations can help both of you: it lets them speak from a place of personal experience, and it lets you hear first-hand someone’s experience with the product.

There are no wrong questions when it comes to cannabis. Budtenders truly want to help. You should never feel awkward or uncomfortable asking for help in a cannabis shop. It’s only been legal for a couple of years! The expectation is that a whole new group of consumers will be hitting stores for the first time. The most important thing to remember is not to feel pressured. If you don’t want to purchase any of the products presented to you, don’t feel obligated. And if you do end up purchasing cannabis, make sure you start low and go slow when consuming it. Your cannabis tolerance might not have built up yet, so better safe than sorry.


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