While we don’t necessarily believe in schadenfreude…look it up if necessary…we certainly believe in taking comparative comfort. Or in other words, counting yourself lucky that things could always be worse.

If cannabis legalization in your own jurisdiction still seems to be a million years away, you probably feel you’ve been dealt a bum hand. Nevertheless, you can take it from us when we tell you that you really haven’t got it nearly as bad as some other poor folks.

One of the biggest problems with such radically different cannabis laws from one place to the next is that you often have genuinely no idea where you stand. It’s a scenario a surprising number of stoners are familiar with. You take a trip to somewhere new, you make friends with the locals and you find yourself being offered the chance to buy some killer bud at a great price. So you do, after which you roll it, spark it up somewhere safe and turn an already awesome trip into something truly epic. That is, until you feel that sudden grasp on your shoulder followed by the booming sound of ‘Excuse me sir, can you tell me what exactly you’re smoking?’ from a pissed-off looking local cop. That’s right – you’ve only gone and broken the law to a much more severe extent than you realised, and now you’re in a world of trouble.

But then there’s the even worse scenario of being busted in a foreign country where the cops don’t speak a word of your language. You don’t know what’s going on, what they have in store for you or whether you could be looking at jail time…or worse. Yes, to a certain extent it’s your fault for not doing your homework. Then again, given the fact that some countries have a penchant for executing drug users and traffickers, you’d have to be out of your mind not to check before you go.

So with this in mind, what follows is a brief overview of just a few American States and overseas territories that have a tendency to be very, VERY strict when it comes to cannabis: