Why We Don’t Accept Cards for Cannabis in Phuket?

confused young beautiful girl holding card and showing empty hand on isolated white background

Description: Cannot use credit cards as payment


As you explore Phuket, you might have come across our local cannabis scene. However, when you’ve tried to make a purchase on our website, you’ve found that we don’t accept card payments. If you’ve wondered why, let me guide you through the intricate tapestry of global finance and legal policies that shape this situation.

Ripple Effect of a Global Card Ban

Mastercard, a global payment processing giant, made a significant announcement in July 2023. They instructed financial institutions to cease cannabis transactions on its debit cards. This decision has had far-reaching effects, influencing businesses worldwide, including those nestled here in Phuket.

In essence, Mastercard’s policies dictate that businesses wanting to offer their customers the convenience of paying via Mastercard must ensure their products or services align with Mastercard’s terms. With this new directive, any business selling cannabis can no longer provide Mastercard as a payment option.

American Influence and the Larger Picture

The crux of this card ban lies in the United States’ laws. Despite several states legalizing cannabis for medicinal and recreational use, it remains illegal at the federal level. This dichotomy places banks and financial institutions in a difficult position. The risk of federal penalties has led most banks to exclude the cannabis industry, thereby influencing card providers like Mastercard to prohibit cannabis transactions on their platforms.

The Cannabis Industry’s Response

Leaders within the global cannabis industry have expressed their concerns regarding Mastercard’s decision. Brady Cobb, the CEO of Sunburn Cannabis, highlighted the adverse impact of this move on the cannabis industry and individuals keen on exploring this emerging market.

A Glimmer of Hope: The SAFE Banking Act

The SAFE Banking Act, currently under consideration in the US Congress, has the potential to modify the banking landscape for the cannabis industry. If passed, this legislation would provide legal protection to banks servicing legal cannabis businesses. Yet, the future of this bill remains uncertain, leaving the cannabis industry in a precarious situation.

unpleased young handsome caucasian man showing and looking at credit card and showing thumb down isolated on white background with copy space

Description: Turn down credit card

Phuket in the Midst of Global Challenges

So, what does all this mean for you and us in Phuket? These complex global financial and legal issues prevent us, and indeed many other businesses, from accepting card payments for cannabis products on our website. No card processing vendor is currently capable of supporting these transactions due to the legal and financial concerns we’ve outlined.


While the beauty of Phuket offers a delightful getaway, the reality of purchasing cannabis here is a nuanced narrative molded by global forces. The non-availability of card payments for cannabis on our website is a reflection of these complexities. As we navigate these challenging currents, we thank you for your understanding and patience.

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