Cannabis Delivery Service? Stay Legal, Be On Time, Optimize

How a Cannabis Delivery Service Can Improve Route Distribution, Make Timely Deliveries, and Comply with State Regulations
Featured image credit: Talaj/

The cannabis delivery business is booming. The demand is high and a lot of medical cannabis delivery businesses have managed to double or triple their profit margins just by selling their products online and delivering it directly to the customers.

Though cannabis delivery is much more profitable than selling it in-store, the retailers or logistics providers have to comply with federal and state laws and regulations. From a federal standpoint, cannabis is not legal. However, 33 states have legalized the medical use of marijuana and 11 states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana.

Despite such restrictions, according to reports, the legal cannabis market is booming and is expected to reach US 73.6 billion marks by 2027. This growth is driven by two key reasons: the legalization of marijuana and an increase in the number of medical uses.

With the legal cannabis industry rising to such prominence, retailers are scrambling to set up efficient processes and meet the growing demands of cannabis delivery service. So, how can you make timely cannabis deliveries, while complying with state laws and regulations? Let’s find out.


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Optimize Delivery Routes

For patients who rely on legal cannabis delivered to their doors, timely delivery plays an integral role in attracting and retaining the clients. This means that the delivery routes must be the shortest, fastest, and most accurate. Yet, using a pen and paper cannot help in accurate multi-stop routing.

It’s best to switch to a route planner that will automate your route planning and provide 100% well-optimized routes with turn-by-turn directions. You can even re-optimize routes at the click of a button and communicate the changes to your drivers through the delivery route planner.

Such a route planner also enables you to set multiple constraints when planning routes, such as route duration, weight, turn restrictions, and especially avoidance zones. This is crucial for cannabis delivery companies to comply with the laws. You can also use the geofencing feature to create virtual fences around a physical area to track and ensure your drivers don’t operate out of the designated area to avoid getting into legal trouble.

Track Your Drivers on a Map

You must monitor your drivers to ensure timely delivery, their safety, and, most importantly, that they comply with the laws. To do so, opt for a cannabis delivery software with a built-in GPS tracker that will help with real-time vehicle tracking.

Such software will also help you identify if any delivery employee is making unscheduled stops during delivery hours, which would be a clear violation of the cannabis delivery law in California and other states. A GPS tracking software will also notify you if a driver engages in unsafe driving habits, such as speeding or taking sharp turns. In this way, you can connect with the driver immediately to rectify the behavior.

In addition, a GPS tracking system can help you protect your vehicles from theft as it informs you immediately if a vehicle moves around outside business hours or moves away from the depot suspiciously. Many state laws also demand that a cannabis retailer or delivery company informs the Bureau and local law enforcement about any theft within 24 hours, which shouldn’t be a matter of concern if you have a GPS tracker in place.

Determine the Appropriate Delivery Model

Should you go for a hub-based delivery model or an onboard inventory delivery model? If you operate in sprawling cities like Los Angeles, rather go for a hub-based delivery model to help you cover a broader territory. This will reduce the delivery time for your customers.

If you operate in a smaller urban area, you can instead opt for an onboard inventory model, which is also called the ice-cream truck model. This delivery model will help you cut back on expenses and customer wait times. However, in the onboard delivery model, your drivers have to be trained on state-wise rules of how much cannabis they can carry as many states have set limits on the worth of onboard inventory.

Keep Customers Informed

Keep your customers informed about their delivery status to increase customer satisfaction and reduce waiting time. A multi-stop route planner can send SMS texts, emails, or voice calls to inform clients whenever the driver is nearby. The best route planners even come with a customer portal that helps customers track their package statuses on their own.

Route4Me offers all these features. It also offers a Next Customer Notification feature which automatically notifies customers when they are the next stop to be visited on an active route. This gives them some time to get ready for your driver so he or she can complete the visit quickly.

Route planners like Route4Me offer many other features that will help you comply with state regulations for cannabis delivery. These include the eSignature feature for proof of delivery from customers, which is a legal mandate in most states. Also, the Barcode Reconciliation, photo/video capture, and activity stream help track and trace all commercial cannabis activities.

In addition, many states have defined transport value limits for making cannabis deliveries. For example, in California, your delivery employee cannot carry cannabis goods with a value in excess of $5,000 at one time. In Oregon, you cannot transport marijuana items designated for retail delivery at any time worth more than $3,000 in retail value. Route4Me’s Revenue Constraint feature enables you to define the maximum amount of the revenue that is planned to be generated from the entire route as well as the revenue that should be generated from each stop on the route. So, you can set the data in the software itself and never need to worry about failing to comply with the law.


Cannabis delivery services are all about convenience and your customers expect an error-free, seamless experience every single time. Being able to provide such fantastic customer service is no easy task. However, it can be achieved by training drivers, implementing the latest tools, and keeping your customers informed.


Want To See For Yourself How Route4Me Can Boost Your Profits?

Whether you want to slash the time it takes you to plan routes for your drivers, increase the number of stops they can make, or keep your customers satisfied knowing that your drivers show up on time… Route4Me helps you achieve that!

Start Free 7 Day Trial

About author: Rahul Dasgupta

Rahul Dasgupta is a content writer with over 20 years of work experience. He holds a master’s degree in computer science and has written thousands of blog posts on route planning and scheduling, making it easy for readers to learn about these complex topics. Rahul enjoys playing tennis in his spare time and loves cuddling with his pet labrador Shinu. Rahul is a big fan of Roger Federer, Messi, and Bill Gates - he admires their drive to be the best at what they do and their philanthropic efforts.


About Route4Me

Route4Me has over 40,000 customers globally. Route4Me's Android and iPhone mobile apps have been downloaded over 2 million times since 2009. Extremely easy-to-use, Route4Me's apps create optimized routes, synchronize routes to mobile devices, enable communication with drivers and customers, offer turn-by-turn directions, delivery confirmation, and more. Behind the scenes, Route4Me's operational optimization platform combines high-performance algorithms with data science, machine learning, and big data to plan, optimize, and analyze routes of almost any size in real-time.