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Do you want to learn how to become a budtender in Alaska? Working in a dispensary in Alaska is one of the best ways to get your start in a cannabis career. Budtenders are skilled sales people that know their cannabis and strains. If you want to work in an Alaskan dispensary, here’s what you need to know.

Alaska Budtender: Job Description

Working as an Alaska budtender is a great starting point toward a future in cannabis. A budtender position can give you experience to work anywhere in the industry. Budtenders must provide excellent customer service to customers. They must have great retail sales skills to manage the daily activities.

You’re in charge of welcoming customers when they walk in through the door or call by phone. As a budtender, you are responsible for educating them on the product selection.

Customers may ask you for suggestions of cannabis products or strains. You'll have to recommend products based on a customer’s desired effects or medical condition. You’ll need to be able to operate a cash register and process payments on a POS system. Budtenders need to balance a cash drawer and inventories at the beginning and end of their shift. You’ll also have to keep your work area clean and organized at all times.

Budtender Requirements

If you want to be a budtender in Alaska, you must be at least 21 years of age or older to apply. Some pot dispensaries may require you to have a high school diploma or GED. Dispensaries may prefer or require applicants to have previous work experience in a relevant field. Dispensaries may look for applicants with at least one year of budtending, sales, or retail experience.

All dispensaries require you to have a marijuana handlers permit and a municipal food handler card. Dispensary workers must be reliable, flexible, dependable, and team players.

How to Get Your Marijuana Handler Permit

Every cannabis employee must obtain a cannabis handler permit. Apply or renew here. To complete the application, you’ll need to fill out and submit the marijuana handler permit cover sheet. The cover sheet will include all of your personal and contact information. You’ll need to include a valid state ID or driver’s license. Mail-in applications require a 2×2 passport style photo.

Marijuana handlers must go through a criminal history background check. Background checks must be dated within 30 days of the submitted handler permit application. Include a certificate of course completion from one of the approved training courses. Include a $50 payment along with your application. Payment can be a personal check, money order, or cashiers check made payable to the State of Alaska. The department does not accept cash and credit card payments.

Mail in your marijuana handler permit applications to the following address:

Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office

Attn: Handler Permits

550 West 7th Ave, Suite 1600

Anchorage, AK 99501

Replacement cards are $50. Your permit is valid for three years from the date of course completion. You don’t need to be a resident of Alaska to apply for a cannabis handler permit. Direct any questions to [email protected].

In order to apply for the permit, head over to the cannabis handler permit site. At the site, click the button titled “Initiate Handler Permit Application.” Create a myAlaska login ID and password to start. Once in the home screen, click the “Apply for a New Handler Permit” button. Fill out the application entirely and click the “Submit” button. Afterward, click the “Review Application” button to review your application. Once you’ve reviewed it, you’re ready to submit.

There are a number of disqualifying factors relating to criminal history. Those with a felony conviction in Alaska within the last five years can’t apply. Those currently on parole for a felony conviction in Alaska can’t get a permit. You can’t apply if you have a Class A misdemeanor conviction involving a controlled substance other than a scheduled VIA controlled substance, in Alaska within the last two years.

You can’t apply if you have a Class A misdemeanor conviction relating to selling, furnishing, or distributing marijuana, in Alaska within the last two years. Finally, you aren’t allowed to get a permit if you are currently under indictment for an offense listed above.

All cannabis employees must pass their cannabis handler permit training classes. Classes teach you the basic laws of the state and how to remain compliant with dispensary regulations. Courses range from $35 to $40 per training. To obtain a permit, you must first complete one of the following approved courses:

  • Advanced Learning Management System
    • Medical Marijuana 411
    • Phone: 1-844-411-0500 ext. 814
  • CannabisHandler
    • Best Price Alaska Marijuana Handler Training
    • Phone: 1-888-344-5554
  • Alaska Marijuana Handler Permit Training
    • Rserving
    • Phone: (605) 427-2000 and 1-800-247-7737
  • Alaska Marijuana Handler Certification
    • Green CulturED
    • Phone: (720)446-8847
  • Alaska Marijuana Handler Certification Course
    • Alaska Green Resources
    • Phone: (907) 252-8026
  • Alaska Marijuana Handler ONLINE Certification Training
    • Marijuana Handlers
    • Phone: (907) 301-1365
  • Alaska Marijuana Institute Online Certification Course
    • Good Enterprises
    • Phone: (907) 202-6328
  • Marijuana Handler Permit Instruction
    • L. Marcy
    • Phone: (907) 631-9518
  • Marijuana Handler's Card
    • Kimberly Kole
    • Phone: (907) 727-6584

In-person training

Food handler cards are easy to get. Simply go to the food worker card page to purchase a TestID for $10. Print your TestID and take your food worker card test to pass. After you pass your test, print your food worker card. A valid food worker card is valid for three years.

There are over 300,000 jobs in the cannabis industry. CTU trained me for one of them!

marijuana extraction course - Johanna Rose
Makes $24.50 @ THC +

How Much Does a Budtender Make in Alaska?

Budtenders in Alaska can make between $12 to $15 an hour. Your pay rate depends on your work and cannabis experience. The average salary of a budtender in Anchorage, Alaska is $13.40 per hour. Budtenders may receive job perks such as tips, bonuses, and store discounts.

Where to Find Budtender Jobs in Alaska

Cannabis dispensaries are open in many Alaska communities. Anchorage has the most dispensaries out of all the cities in Alaska. Other dispensary hotspots include Fairbanks, Juneau, and Sitka. Search online job boards to find dispensary jobs near you. Attend networking events to meet business owners who are hiring. Make sure to have an updated resume and cover letter to apply.

Online Budtender Training in Alaska

While CTU’s online cannabis training program isn’t an approved course, our curriculum gives you budtender training and more. Learn all sides of the business from cultivation to extraction and more. You'll learn how to get hired or start your own business. CTU’s program is an extension of your education, so you can breakthrough in today's competitive market.

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