With almost as many dispensaries as there are Starbucks in some states, it can become difficult to find the best option available for your individual needs or wants. The following is a brief description of the most important elements to look for when choosing a primary care center, or even just a dispensary worth returning to. Because each person will be looking for different specifics when it comes to their cannabis and/or shopping experience, it’s best to decide which factors are most important for you. I have them listed here in the order of my personal importance.
Quality: Let’s face it; everyone uses cannabis for its different effects. Some use it for the medicinal effects, some use it for the recreational effects, but everyone uses it to get an effect. The effect of the strain of marijuana is directly related to the quality. We all know that a strong sativa will usually keep us active and creative (and maybe a bit paranoid), but what about a weak sativa? Or a mediocre hybrid? Knowing the level of potency will allow you to seek out a strain that works best for you in relation to its potency. Many people simply cannot handle certain strains if they are too potent. I prefer strong hybrids and mediocre indicas to get the effects that work best for me. Make sure the dispensary you choose has buds that are on par with the quality you’re seeking.
Price: Price is almost always the second most important factor, and for many, it’s the most important. Prices will vary from state to state, dispensary to dispensary, and even from strain to strain. Make sure the dispensary you choose is not overcharging for a quality of product you can get cheaper somewhere else. In some cases, dispensaries will buy from one another, and sell the same strain for cheaper than the dispensary they purchased it from. If you’re on a budget, just remember, you don’t have to buy swag, there are plenty of dispensaries that offer high quality buds at low prices, you just have to look for them. And don’t forget, potent cannabis will always last you longer than its weaker counterpart.
Selection: Many dispensaries have great prices and phenomenal quality but they just don’t have many choices. Variety is the spice of life, and often one of the most fun parts about smoking, as well as shopping at dispensaries, not to mention the fact that you’ll build up a tolerance to a strain from repeated use. Generally speaking, a dispensary with a large selection (at least 25 or more strains) is also going to give you a better chance of finding the best combination of quality and price. Many dispensaries operate on a tiered pricing system, where prices range from say, $20-$50 per eighth. In many cases, you can find a strain that is priced lower than the rest of the top shelf buds, but matches them in quality. If you have the time, check out as many of their strains as possible to get a good idea of their prices compared to their quality.
Location: No one wants to drive all the way across town to pick up their meds. In many cases, the dispensary closest to your house will not be the best option for you; if it is, consider yourself lucky. It’s great to know where all of the local dispensaries are located, but often times this can be impossible. Searching for nearby dispensaries online and reading reviews are a great place to start, but usually, it’s just a matter of keeping your eyes peeled on your way home from work or downtown. I always recommend people stop into dispensaries they pass when they have the time, even if they don’t have the money. You can always tell the people at the shop you’re just browsing, but you’ll never know if it’s worth a trip back unless you stop in while you’re nearby.
Service: The final element to a dispensary shopping experience is the customer service. The only reason it is listed last is because sometimes it’s worth it to deal with horrible service, if the quality and price are right. Oftentimes, when the buds and prices of two different shops are comparable, I return to the one with the better service. A good budtender will know all of the effects of the various strains, be customer oriented, and usually, make sure to keep the stems out of your bag. I never return to a shop that gives me shake out of a jar filled with buds. The best shops will get to know your preferences, your budget, and hopefully, your name. And sometimes, you just wanna go where everybody knows your name.
Article from Marijuana.com and republished with permission.