Brian Applegarth is a strategic voice and leader in the advancement of cannabis-related travel and tourism. He is the founder of the Cannabis Travel Association – an international non-profit organization that is the united voice of cannabis tourism and travel, Cultivar Strategies – a cannabis-solutions provider for travel destinations, and The Cannabis Trail – a non-profit dedicated to preserving and celebrating cannabis history and culture in northern California.
Brian serves as a subject matter expert for industry organizations like the California Travel Association, Destinations International, San Francisco Travel, Sonoma County Tourism, Visit Greater Palm Springs, Visit West Hollywood, and the Las Vegas Chamber of Cannabis. Holistic strategy, innovation, and thought leadership at the intersection of cannabis tourism are the signature of his work.
Brian was the sole expert advisor for the first-ever national research on the Cannabis Travel Audience profile in the United States. He is known for creating the Cannabis Effect Pairing method, a proprietary consumption method for psychedelics in travel, serving the visitor profile in a safe and meaningful way while spreading visitor spend strategically throughout a destination by positioning cannabis as a tool for targeted sensory enhancement. A world traveler with an appreciation for culture, passion, and human rights – Brian brings a global, expansive perspective to his work.
On this episode of Destination on the Left, I talk with Brian Applegarth about the cannabis travel trend, and he walks us through what cannabis experiences look like when embraced by a destination. He does a deep dive into the various facets of the cannabis market, including leisure, business, and medical, and describes how cannabis pairs perfectly with travel and tourism opportunities. Brian also discusses how destinations can respond to the growing appetite for cannabis-related experiences in a safe and informed way.
Cannabis comes in many different forms or product categories, and Brian describes the sheer variety of experiences available within the cannabis niche. From CBD relaxation tea to a spa day complete with a topical cannabis oil massage, destinations can leverage many creative options as part of their cannabis experience offering. Wherever your destination, there are opportunities to breathe new life into a region’s signature crop to create a new product that attracts a new tranche of visitors.
Brian describes why he feels an immense sense of responsibility to ensure that cannabis visitor experiences are done correctly. His ambition is to elevate all of the opportunities that show the positivity and the power of the plant and encourage destinations to explore all cannabis’ uses, from sustainable hemp products to its medicinal uses. Destinations have an opportunity to get in on the ground floor of the niche and do it right — to ensure that visitors have a safe and meaningful experience.
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