Underage Drinking
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Underage Drinking


Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country (2015):
  Prohibited regardless of age
  Minimum age is 25
  Minimum age is 21
  Minimum age is 20
  Minimum age is 19
  Minimum age is 18
  Minimum age is 17
  Minimum age is 16
  Minimum age is 15
  No regulation/no age set

The legal drinking age is the minimum age at which a person can legally consume alcohol beverages. The minimum age alcohol can be legally consumed can be different from the age when it can be purchased in some countries. These laws vary between different countries and many laws have exemptions or special circumstances. Most laws apply only to drinking alcohol in public places with alcohol consumption in the home being mostly unregulated (an exception being the UK, which has a minimum legal age of five for supervised consumption in private places). Some countries also have different age limits for different types of alcohol drinks.[1]

The most commonly known reason for the law behind the legal drinking age is the effect on the brain in adolescents. Since the brain is still maturing, alcohol can have a negative effect on the memory and long-term thinking. Alongside that, it can cause liver failure, and create a hormone imbalance in teens due to the constant changes and maturing of hormones during puberty.[2] Young people especially are also are at increased risk of injury when drinking alcohol.[3]

Africa

Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country (2015):
  Prohibited
  Minimum purchase age of 21 years
  Minimum purchase age of 18 years
  Minimum purchase age of 17 years
  Minimum purchase age of 16 years
  Minimum purchase age of 15 years
  No minimum purchase age

The most common minimum age to purchase alcohol in Africa is 18. However, Angola (except Luanda Province), Central African Republic, Comoros, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, and Togo have no laws on the book restricting the sale of alcohol to minors. In Libya, Somalia and Sudan the sale, production and consumption of alcohol is completely prohibited.[improper synthesis?]

Country State/region/province De jure Notes
Drinking age Purchase age
 Algeria None[] 18[1] Order No. 26-75 (1975), Article 14
 Angola None [4] There is no national legislation prohibiting the sale of alcohol to minors.
Luanda Province 18[5] Legislation in Luanda Province:

It is prohibited to sell alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18. It is also prohibited for minors to buy and consume alcohol.[5]

Benin None 20 Republic of Benin Report to UN Committee on the Rights of the Child CRC/C/BEN/2 (2005):
  • Article 8 of the decree of 10 June 1942 regulating the production, import, advertisement, sale, and consumption of alcohol beverages in French West Africa, prohibits the sale or free supply of alcohol beverages to minors under 20.
  • Article 13 stipulates fines ranging from CFAF 200,000 to CFAF 1 million for such offences, doubled in the case of repeat offences.
  • There are no official measures prohibiting children from consuming alcohol, tobacco or other substances harmful to their health.
 Botswana None[6](prohibited for any person to supply)[4] 18[6] It is prohibited for any person with a liquor license to sell or supply alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 18 years. Because the law only applies to licensees, it is not prohibited for minors to buy, consume, or possess alcohol beverages.[6] It is also prohibited for any person to expose or supply alcohol to a minor under the age of 18 years.[4]
 Burundi None[7] 18 (unless accompanied by parent or legal guardian)[7] It is prohibited for any person with a liquor license to sell or supply alcohol beverages to unaccompanied minors under the age of 18 years.
 Cameroon 21 (18 if accompanied by a person 21 years of age or older)[8] It is rohibitedf or any person with a liquor license to sell or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under 18 years of age. The law permits adults from the ages 18 to 21 to consume, purchase and buy alcohol beverages if accompanied by a person 21 years of age or older. Anyone over the age of 21 years may buy or consume alcohol unaccompanied.
 Cape Verde None[9] 18[9] It is prohibited for any person to sell or supply alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 18 years.
 Central African Republic 15 (off-premises), or 21 (on-premises)[10] It is rohibitedf or any person to sell or supply alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 15 years when sold or supplied off-premises (e.g., liquor stores, wine stores, and supermarkets). It is prohibited for any person to sell or supply alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 21 years when sold or supplied on-premises (e.g., restaurants, bars, and cafes).[10]
Chad None 18 Law 2017-01 Penal Code Chapter 6 Articles 376-378 establish penalties for licensees who permit entry to youth below age 16 unaccompanied by a supervising adult, sell or offer alcohol beverages to youth below age 18 unaccompanied by a supervising adult, or serve a person below age 18 to intoxication.
 Comoros 18[11] It is prohibited for any person to sell or supply alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 18 years.[11]
 Egypt 21 Law No. 371 of 1956 concerning public shops and the resolutions implementing it
 Equatorial Guinea 21[12]
 Eritrea None[13] 18[13] It is prohibited for any person to sell or serve alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 18 years.
 Eswatini 18[4] Liquor Licenses Act (1964) Section 27
 Ethiopia None[14] 18[14] It is prohibited for any person to sell, offer, serve or allow to serve alcohol beverages "in substantial quantities" to any infant or young person. The criminal code defines a young person as any person under the age of 15 years. But the Criminal Code Proclamation 414 (2004) states: "Whoever endangers the health of another, intentionally and unscrupulously, by administering or serving, or by causing or permitting to be administered or served, to minors (defined as anyone under the age of 18 years) (...) alcohol beverages or spirituous liquors of such kind or in such quantity as to make their injurious effect certain or probable, is punishable with simple imprisonment not exceeding one year, and fine.

The Revised Family Code Proclamation No. 213 (2000) Article 215 defines a minor as anyone who has not attained the full age of 18.

 Gabon None 18 Penal Code (1963), Article 209bis-1
 Gambia None[15][4] 16[15][4] Under the Liquor License Act (1957) it is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to "anyone under the apparent age of 16".

A "young person" is defined as anyone under the age of 17 by the Children and Young Persons Act, 1949 Section 2.

 Ghana None 18[16]
 Guinea-Bissau None[4]
 Kenya None[17] 18[17] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years.
 Lesotho 18[18] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply any alcohol beverage to a minor under the age of 18 years. It is also prohibited for minors to consume, buy or attempt to buy alcohol.
 Liberia None 18 It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years; "this section shall not apply to a parent or guardian who serves an alcoholic beverage to his child or ward" Penal Law of 1976 Sec 16.
 Libya Prohibited [19] Previously Article 498 of the Libyan Penal Code prohibited the sale of alcohol beverages to juveniles under the age of 16 years.[4]
 Malawi None 18[20] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years.
 Mauritius None 18[21] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years.
 Morocco None Prohibited to sell to Muslims; 16 for others Legislative Decision No. 3.177.66 of 1967 Art 28-29
 Mozambique 18[22] Decree 54/2013 Regulations on the Control of the Production, Sale and Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages (2013) , Article 5 (Prohibitions)
 Namibia None 18[23] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years.
 Niger 18 Penal Code Article 302
 Nigeria None (at national level)[4] Purchase age of 18 in Abuja (Abuja Municipal Area Council Bye-Law 2001 Sec 15)

Prohibited in Borno state

 Republic of the Congo None 18[24]
 Rwanda 18 Organic Law implementing the Penal Code N°01/2012/OL Articles 217 and 219
 Senegal None 18[25]
 Seychelles None 18


Chapter 113 Licenses Act (2010)

  • Subsidiary Legislation: Licenses (Manufacturing) Regulation (1987), Article 8(5)(page 20):
    • In the case of manufacturing and processing of liquor, tobacco and tobacco products, the license holder shall (i) not deliver or sell liquor to, or allow any consumption of liquor by, any person under the age of 18 years or deliver or sell tobacco or tobacco products or allow it to be used on the premises by such a person;
  • Subsidiary Legislation: Licenses (Liquor and Outdoor Entertainment) Regulations (1998), Article 14 (page 28):
    • (1) The holder of a license, his servant or agent shall not (a) employ or allow a person under the age of 18 years, ... (b) sell or deliver liquor, cigarettes or tobacco products to, or allow liquor to be consumed or cigarettes or any tobacco products to be used by any person under the age of 18 years on the premises; ... (i) admit any person under the age of 18 years to a premises licensed as a public bar, toddy bar or at the premises licensed to manufacture and sell baka or lapire;...
 Somalia Prohibited[26]
 South Africa None 18 The parent, adult guardian of a minor or a person responsible for administering a religious sacrament, may on occasion supply to that minor a moderate quantity of liquor to be consumed by the minor in the presence and under the supervision of that parent, guardian or other person.[27]
 South Sudan 18[4]
 Sudan Prohibited[28] Penal Code 1991, Art 78-79
 Tanzania None 18[29]
 Togo None[4]
 Tunisia None Sale to Muslims is prohibited;

16/18 for others

Law 59-147 Regulation of beverage outlets and similar establishments as modified by Law 74-23 Article 35 prohibits serving alcohol beverages to Muslims and entry to on-premise establishments to persons under 16 years of age unaccompanied by a parent or responsible adult;

Law 2004-75 Article 4 prohibits entry to night clubs to those under 18 with an exception for accompanied persons between 16 and 18 in certain venues, sale of alcohol beverages to whom is prohibited.

 Uganda None[30] 18
16 (wine, beer, porter, cider, perry or native liquor with meal)[30]
It is prohibited for any licensee to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years. The law provides an exception for anyone who is 16 or 17 years of age, and consumes a fermented alcohol drink with a meal, in a part of a licensed premises that serves meals and is not a bar.
 Western Sahara None[4]
 Zambia 18[31] It is prohibited for any person with a liquor license, to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under 18 years of age. Before the Liquor Licensing Act was enacted in 2011, the minimum age to sell, serve and supply alcohol beverages was 14 years.[32]
 Zimbabwe None[33] 18 (except with parent/guardian consent)
Liquor Act Article 116 Prohibited conduct by persons in general (1) No person shall-- ... (l) being a person to whom in terms of this Act the sale of liquor is prohibited, purchase or attempt to purchase liquor in contravention of such provision; .... (o) sell, lend, give, supply or deliver, or offer so to do, any liquor to any person under the age of eighteen years except with the consent of the parent or guardian of that person.


Children's Act Section 78 - It is prohibited for any person to sell, lend, give, supply, deliver or offer alcohol beverages to any child under the age of 16 years, except upon production of a written order signed by the parent or guardian of the child known to such person. The police has the duty to seize any alcohol beverage in the possession of a child under the age of 16 years without a written consent of the parents or legal guardian. [33]

Americas

Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country:
  Minimum purchase age of 21 years
  Minimum purchase age of 19 years
  Minimum purchase age of 18 years
Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country:
  Minimum purchase age of 18 years
  Minimum purchase age of 16 years
Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country (2015):
  Minimum purchase age of 20 years
  Minimum purchase age of 18 years

The minimum age to purchase and consume varies, but the most common age is 18 years. However, in North America the age limits varies between 18 and 21 years of age. Throughout the United States, except in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands where it is 18, the minimum legal age to purchase any alcohol beverage from a shop, supermarket, liquor store, bar, club or any other licensed premises is 21 years of age. In Canada each province can decide which minimum age limit is to be set to buy or consume alcohol. Most provinces have a minimum age of 19 years, while Alberta, Manitoba and Quebec have set a minimum age of 18 years. In South America all countries have set a minimum purchase age of 18 years, except for Guyana where minors aged 16 or 17 may consume a glass of beer, wine or cider in a restaurant provided they buy a meal, and Paraguay the only country with a minimum legal purchase and drinking age of 20 years.

Country State/region/province De jure Notes
Drinking age Purchase age
 Anguilla None[34] 18[34] It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol drinks to anyone under the age of 18 years. Violating the regulation is punished with a $9.600 fine.
 Antigua and Barbuda None 16[35] The sale and distribution of alcohol to a person under 16 years of age, and purchase by persons under 16 years of age, for consumption in licensed premises are prohibited.
 Argentina None 18[36]
 Bahamas 18[37] It is prohibited for any adult to sell, serve or supply any alcohol beverage to a child (defined as anyone under the age of 18 years). The law provides an exception to treat an illness in urgent cases or upon order by a medical doctor.
 Barbados None 16[38] It is prohibited to sell or serve any alcohol beverage to anyone under the age of 16 years. The President of the Barbados Road Safety Association is trying to raise the drinking age to 18 years because the law is often violated.[38]
 Belize 18[39] Drinking age is rarely enforced. IDs are almost never requested.
 Bermuda 18[40] It is prohibited to sell or serve any alcohol beverage to a child under the age of 18 years.
 Bolivia None 18 It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol beverages to minors under the age of 18 years.

Law 259 Against the Sale and Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages (2012) Article 20

 Brazil None[41] 18[41] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply any alcohol beverage to a person under 18 years of age. The presidential law enacted on March 17, 2015 made any violation of the law a criminal offence. Any adult person selling, serving, giving or supplying alcohol beverages to a minor is punished with imprisonment of 2 to 4 years, a fine of R$3.000 to R$10.000 and a ban to operate any business selling or serving alcohol.
 British Virgin Islands 16[39] It is prohibited to sell or to supply alcohol to anyone under the age of 16.
 Canada  Alberta
 Manitoba
 Quebec
18[42][43][44] In Alberta no person may give or sell or permit any person to give or sell liquor to a minor in licensed premises.[42] In Manitoba a person must not give, sell or otherwise supply liquor to a minor. The law provides exceptions for a doctor, dentist, pharmacist or other health care professional for medical purposes; for sacramental purposes and by the parent, guardian, spouse or common-law partner, if it is given or supplied in a residence.[43] In Quebec the law prohibits the sale of alcohol beverages to a minor under the age of 18 years.[44]
 Ontario
 Saskatchewan
 British Columbia
 Newfoundland and Labrador
 Nova Scotia
 New Brunswick
 Prince Edward Island
 Northwest Territories
 Yukon
 Nunavut
19 Ontario's Liquor Licence Act permits the supply and consumption of liquor to those under the age of 19. However, supplying a person under the age of 19 is restricted to the person's parent or legal guardian, and may only occur in a residence or in a private place of the parent or legal guardian. A person under the age of 19 who was supplied liquor in this manner is permitted to consume the liquor only in the place it was supplied.[45]
 Cayman Islands 18[46] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years. It is also prohibited for any minor to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol beverages. Violation of the law is punished with a fine of five thousand dollars, and the court may, if the offence was committed by the licensee, order that the licensee shall forfeit his licence and that no licence may be issued to that person for a period not exceeding ten years from the date of his conviction.
 Chile 18[47] The minimum age is 18 to enter an enclosure that sells alcohol beverages. Selling alcohol to a minor may incur a fine. One must provide identification upon request. Residents of Chile over the age of 18 must carry their Chilean identification card issued by the Civil Registry and Identification Service at all times.[48]
 Colombia None 18[49] The law prohibits the sale of alcohol to a minor (anyone under the age of 18 years). It is not prohibited for minors to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol.[49]
 Costa Rica None 18[50] The law prohibits the sale of alcohol to a minor (anyone under the age of 18 years). Selling alcohol to a minor will be punished with a fine equivalent to ten basic salaries. Whoever permits minors to maintain in any establishment which main purpose is to sell alcohol beverages, will be sanctioned with a fine equivalent to five salaries. It is not prohibited for minors to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol.[50]
 Cuba None 16[51] The penal code prohibits any adult to induce any young person under the age of 16 years, to habitually consume alcohol beverages. However this means that de facto anyone selling, serving or supplying alcohol should check if the buyer has attained the age of 16 years. In most cases this law is not strictly enforced.[51][52]
Dominica None 16 Laws of Dominica Liquor Licences Act Chapter 70:03, Part IV, Sec 15(f)
 Dominican Republic None 18[53]
 Ecuador None 18[54] It is prohibited to sell alcohol beverages to a minor under the age of 18 years of age. The law obligates establishments to place a visible notice at the point of sale and to check identification to enforce the law. However it is not prohibited for minors to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol.[54]
 El Salvador None 18[55] It is strictly prohibited to sell or serve alcohol beverages to a minor under the age of 18 years. Violation of the law is punished with ¢ 25,000.00 and if convicted once more the license will be suspended for a period of six months. It is legal for minors to buy, attempt to buy and consume alcohol.[55]
 Falkland Islands 18[56] It is prohibited for any adult to sell, give or provide alcohol to a minor under the age of 18 years in any public place or licensed premises. Parents may permit their children to consume alcohol on private premises. Minors consuming alcohol in public are committing a criminal offence. The law provides exceptions for the consumption of alcohol by minors for prescription of or at the direction of a government medical officer or in the course of the administration of Holy Communion according to the rites of any Christian denomination.[56]
 Grenada None 16 (None off-premise) Chapter 174 Liquor Dealers' Licenses Act (1988), accessible through the Laws of Grenada Portal
 Guatemala 18[57] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply any alcohol drink to a minor under 18 years of age. Minors under 18 years are prohibited by law, to consume alcohol beverages in public.[57]
 Guyana None 18

(16 on-premise for wine or malt liquor with a meal)[58]

It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol to a person under 18 years of age. The law provides an exception for minors aged 16 and 17, if they consume a glass of beer, wine or cider with a meal in a restaurant. Otherwise attempting to buy alcohol or buying alcohol as a minor is an offence.[58]
 Haiti None None (at national level) In the capital Port-au-Prince, it is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol to minors under 18 years old from May 17, 2017. Vendors are required to check identification.[59]The Senate voted on a proposed Law on the protection of minors from alcohol beverages, to establish a legal purchase age of 18 and related implementation measures, in December 2012. The law has not yet been approved and enacted.

Law prohibiting minors entry to entertainment venues Article 1 prohibits those under the age of 16 from entering cinemas and theaters (except during children's programming), clubs, cafes, or venues licensed to sell alcohol beverages.

 Honduras None 18 Law for Police Enforcement and Social Coexistence Decree 226 (2001) Article 68 bans the sale of alcohol to minors; The definition of punishable gang activity for minors aged 12-18 includes drinking alcohol beverages in public places (Art 90-91).

Code of Children and Adolescents Decree 73 (1996)

 Jamaica None 18[60] It is prohibited to sell or serve any alcohol beverage to a child (which is defined as anyone under the age of 18 years).[60]
 Mexico 18[47] The minimum age to buy and consume alcohol beverages is regulated by each state of Mexico. But all states have set a minimum age of 18 years, and in no state is it legal for minors to buy and consume alcohol.
 Nicaragua None 18[61]
 Panama None 18[62]
 Paraguay None 20[63]
 Peru None 18[64]
Saint Kitts and Nevis None 18 Liquor Licences Act Sec 32(f)
Saint Lucia None 16 Chapter 13.17 Liquor Licence Act Art 37
 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines None 16[65] Chapter 342 Liquor License Act (1990), Sections 27 and 28
 Trinidad and Tobago None 18[66] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to child under the age of 18 years. It is also prohibited for an adult to send a child to buy alcohol on behalf. It is not prohibited for children to buy or consume alcohol.[66]
 Turks and Caicos Islands None 18[67] It is prohibited to serve or sell liquor to a young person under the age of eighteen years. Minors under the age of sixteen years may not present in a licensed premises mainly serving and selling alcohol beverages.[67]
 United States
(50 states)
Varies by state[47] 21[47] The National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984 withholds revenue from states that allow the purchase of alcohol by anyone under the age of 21. Prior to the effective date of that Act, the drinking age varied from state to state. Some states do not allow those under the legal drinking age to be present in liquor stores or in bars (usually, the difference between a bar and a restaurant is that food is served only in the latter). Contrary to popular belief, since the act went into law, only a few states prohibit minors and young adults from consuming alcohol in private settings.

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism maintains a database that details state-level regulations on consumption and sale age limits.[68]

United States  Puerto Rico 18 Law 118 Penalties for Provision of Alcoholic Beverages to Minors under 18 years of age (1984)
United States  United States Virgin Islands 18[69]
 Uruguay None 18[70] Only selling alcohol to minors under the age of 18 is prohibited, consumption and purchase by minors is not prohibited.
 Venezuela None 18[71]

Asia

Country De jure Notes
Drinking age Purchase age
 Afghanistan Prohibited [72]
 Bahrain Age 21
 Bangladesh Prohibited for Muslims
 Bhutan None 18[73]
 Brunei 17 for private residence consumption, but prohibited for Muslims[47] Prohibited[47] Non-Muslims over 17 years of age are allowed to import alcohol not to exceed maximum total volume 2 liters of liquor and 12 cans of beer at 330 ml for personal use, once in 48 hours. This alcohol must be "stored and consumed at the place of residence of the importer" and is "not to be given, transferred or sold to another person.".[47]
 Cambodia None The Health Ministry drafted a law to regulate the sale and consumption of alcohol in June 2015, with emphasis on establishing a minimum legal purchase age of 21 and preventing underage drinking.

The draft law has not yet been enacted. https://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/groups-urge-passing-alcohol-law-be-sped

 China None 18[47] Law of the People's Republic of China on the Protection of Minors (2006 Revision) [Revised in 2012][]

Ministry of Commerce Decree No. 25 (2006)

 Hong Kong None 18[74] IDs are rarely checked in bars and clubs, but are checked when purchasing alcohol at shops. Private drinking is also not regulated.[75]
 India 18-25 (varies by jurisdiction)[47] Purchase age:

18 in Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Sikkim, and Puducherry

21 in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Mizoram, Orissa (Odisha), Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal

25 in Haryana, Meghalaya, Punjab, Delhi

Consumption of alcohol is prohibited in the states of Bihar, Gujarat, Lakshadweep, Manipur, and Nagaland.[76]

 Indonesia 21[77] Sale is prohibited in Banda Aceh and Papua[47]
 Iran Prohibited[47] There is a ban on alcohol, but religious minorities may purchase small amounts from shops owned by the same religious minority.[78]
 Iraq Prohibited[79]
 Israel 18[80] 18[47] Israel law prohibits selling or serving alcohol to minors. Minors are prohibited to drink alcohol in public places and the police may confiscate alcohol drinks from them.
 Japan 20[81]
 Jordan 18 Instructions issued by the Ministry of Interior Concerning Liquor Store Permits (2010), Article 6
 Kazakhstan None 21 Law 235 of 2014 Code of Administrative Offences Section 200
 Kuwait Prohibited[47] Law No. 46 (1964)
 Kyrgyzstan None 18[47] Law No.269 Government Regulation of the Production and Sale of Alcohol (2009), Article 13.2
 Lebanon None 18[47] Penal Code (1943), Articles 625-626 (promulgated by Legislative Decree No. 340 (2011)

According to a global school health study, 40% of minors over 13 drink alcohol and up to 25% buy it from stores.[82]

 Macau None[47]
 Malaysia None Sale to Muslims is prohibited;

21 for others [47]

Food Act 1983 Food Regulations (1985) Regulation 361 (2014) and Food (Amendment) Regulations 2016

Increased from 18 to 21 in December 2017, effective October 16, 2018. There will be an 18-month grace period for sellers to comply. After the grace period, anyone caught selling to persons under 21 can be fined up to RM10,000 and jailed up to 2 years.[83]

Malaysian identity cards include a designation of religion, which allows enforcement of the religion-based sales restriction.

 Maldives Sale to citizens is prohibited;

18 for tourists [47]

Sale of alcohol is limited to tourist resorts. It is prohibited to sell alcohol to local Maldivians[84]
 Mongolia 21 / 18 with parent consent [85] 21[85] Those under 21 are prohibited from drinking alcohol; parents and guardians are prohibited from supplying alcohol to those under 18.
 Myanmar None 18 Child Law (1993) Art 65

Excise Act (1958) Art 40(7)

   Nepal None 18[86] A policy has reportedly been adopted that would make the legal purchase age 21. However, there are exceptions to underage consumption for purposes of religious ceremonies.[87]
 North Korea 18[88]
 Oman 21 [47] Residents need personal liquor licenses to consume alcohol in their private residences.[89]
 Pakistan Prohibited[47] Prohibition (Enforcement of Hadd) Order of February 19th, 1979

Non-Muslim citizens may possess alcohol to be used in accordance with religious ceremonies[47]

 Palestinian Authority 16[] Legal in most cities.[]
 Philippines None 18 Minors (defined as under 18 years old) are prohibited to purchase alcohol and adults are prohibited to purchase or provide alcohol to minors. Minors are not prohibited to consume alcohol. Act Regulating the Access of Minors to Alcohol Section 4
 Qatar Prohibited[] The sale and consumption of alcohol beverages are not permitted in Qatar: Law No. 11 (2004), Article 272.

Foreigners holding valid residence permits can apply for licenses to purchase alcohol beverages from the Qatar Distribution Company.

 Saudi Arabia Prohibited[47] Drinking or possessing alcohol is prohibited in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Persons who drink or possess alcohol are subject to arrest and trial. Punishments range from heavy fines, lengthy prison terms and whippings.[]
 Singapore None [90]

(18 at licensed premises)

18[90] It is prohibited to sell alcohol to minors. Anyone caught selling, furnishing or acquiring alcohol in any licensed premise to persons below 18 can be fined up to $10,000.

It is also prohibited for minors to purchase, or attempt to purchase alcohol from any licensed premises, in which the minors can also be fined up to $10,000. However, the authorities rarely enforced this on minors.

It is technically legal for minors to possess and consume alcohol at home and in public (not in any licensed premises) as there is no law prohibiting it. It is also technically legal for someone to purchase alcohol and pass it to minors outside the store or licensed premise.[90]

 South Korea None 19[91] The age limit for alcohol is after January 1 of the year one's age turns to 19.[91]
 Sri Lanka 21[47]
 Syria 18[]
 Taiwan None 18[92] Parents, guardians, and others taking care of people under 18 shall not supply alcohol to them or risk administrative fines of 10000 to 50000 new Taiwan dollars (Art 55).

No person shall supply alcohol to anyone under the age of 18 (Art 91).

 Tajikistan 18[47]
 Thailand 20[93] The Alcoholic Beverage Control Act of 2008 increased the drinking age in Thailand from 18 to 20, private drinking is not regulated in private locations.[93][94]
 Turkmenistan 18[47]
 United Arab Emirates 18-21 (varies by jurisdiction)[95] Expatriate non-Muslim residents may request a liquor permit to purchase alcohol beverages, but it is prohibited for such holders to provide drinks to others.[96]

The legal age for drinking alcohol is 18 in Abu Dhabi (although a Ministry of Tourism by-law allows hotels to serve alcohol only to those over 21), and 21 in Dubai and the Northern Emirates (except Sharjah, where drinking alcohol is prohibited).[95]

It is a punishable offence to drink, or to be under the influence of alcohol, in public.[95]

 Uzbekistan None 20[47]
 Vietnam 18[47]
 Yemen Prohibited[] Exception is in Aden Region where it's legal for 21 and up[]

Europe

Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country (2015):
  Minimum purchase age of 20 years
  Minimum purchase age of 18 years
  Minimum purchase age of 17 years
  Minimum purchase age of 16 years
Laws banning minors from consuming alcohol in public/private:
  Minimum age to consume alcohol in public and private
  Minimum age to consume alcohol in public
  No minimum age to consume alcohol in public or private

Most countries within Europe have set 18 as the minimum age to purchase alcohol. Although Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Germany, Gibraltar, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Serbia and Switzerland (except Ticino) maintain a minimum purchase age below 18 years permitting minors either full or limited access to alcohol. In 2005,[97] 2007[98] and recently in 2015[99] the European Union has failed to enact a law forcing member states to raise their purchase age to 18 years. But in the past years several European countries have raised their drinking/purchase age or enacted laws restricting the access to alcohol for minors:

  • In 2002 the autonomous communities Madrid,[100]Valencia[101] and Catalonia[102] raised their minimum purchase age to 18 years. Previous to 2002 Valencia and Madrid had a minimum purchase age of 16 years, and in Catalonia minors aged 16 or 17 could purchase alcohol up to 23% ABV on and off premises.
  • In 2004 Denmark[103] raised its off premises purchase age from 15 to 16 years.
  • In November 2005 Switzerland passed its "Food and Commodities Regulation"[104] (German: Lebensmittel- und Gebrauchsgegenständeverordnung), introducing a ban on alcohol sales to anyone under the age of 16, even though "Alcohol Law"[105] (German: Alkoholgesetz) passed in 1980 already required a minimum age of 18 years for the retail sale of distilled spirits. Therefore, it is prohibited to sell fermented alcohol (e.g. beer, wine, sparkling wine or cider) to anyone under the age of 16, and any distilled alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years. Further the canton of Ticino introduced a cantonal law in 1989 banning all alcohol sales to anyone under the age of 18 years.[106]
  • In 2006 the autonomous community Castile and León[107] raised its minimum purchase age from 16 to 18 years.
  • In late 2006, Gibraltar[108] lawmakers passed the "Children and Young Persons (Alcohol, Tobacco and Gaming) Act 2006", which raised the minimum purchase age from 16 to 18 years. But the new law made an exception: minors aged 16 or 17 can purchase and consume on premises beer, wine or cider under 15% ABV or pre-packed containers of an alcohol strength not exceeding 5.5% ABV (e.g. alcopops).
  • In 2009 France[109] raised its minimum purchase age to 18 years, and fines were increased for selling or serving alcohol to a minor (up to 7,500 EUR). Previous to 2009 the minimum age to purchase any alcohol from off licensed premises was 16 years. In order to purchase alcohol on premises the minimum age was 16 years for low alcohol beverages such as wine, beer, cider, perry, mead, crème de cassis and juices from fermented fruits or vegetables that contain 1.2 to 3° alcohol, natural sweet wines from controlled cultivation - to purchase or be served stronger alcohol drinks one had to be 18 years of age.
  • In October 2009, the government of Malta[110] passed a new law raising its drinking and purchase age from 16 to 17 years.
  • In 2010 the autonomous community of Galicia raised its minimum purchase age from 16 to 18 years.[111]
  • In 2011 Denmark[112] passed a new law, raising the minimum age for off-premises sale of alcohol >16.5% ABV to 18 years of age. The age to purchase alcohol <16.5% ABV remains at 16.
  • In March 2012 Moldova raised the minimum purchase age from formerly 16 to 18 years of age.[113][114]
  • Italy raised its minimum purchase age from 16 to 18 in 2012. Previously Italy did not have a purchase age for off-premises sales, and the minimum age of 16 years for on premises sales was barely enforced.[115]
  • In 2013 the government of Portugal restricted alcohol sales to young people: distilled spirits can not be sold to anyone under the age of 18, and other alcohol (e.g. beer, wine or cider) can't be sold to anyone under the age of 16. Previously the minimum age for all kinds of alcohol beverages was 16 years.[116]
  • As of 1 January 2014, the minimum legal purchase and consumption age was raised from 16 to 18 in the Netherlands. Previously young people over the age of 16 could purchase and consume alcohol <15% ABV, and adults aged 18 and over could purchase alcohol over 15% ABV.[117]
  • As of March 2015, the autonomous community of Asturias raised its drinking age from 16 to 18 years. Asturias was Spain's last community with a drinking age of 16 years. The new law brings the drinking age into line with the rest of Spain.[118]
  • As of December 2015, Portugal raised it's minimum drinking age from formerly 16 years for low alcohol beverages such as beer, wine or cider to 18 years making all sales of alcohol beverages to minors prohibited.[119]
  • As of 1 January 2018, Lithuania raised its minimum drinking age from 18 to 20 years.[120]
  • From January 2019 the federal states of Austria decided to align the drinking and purchase ages. The states Burgenland, Lower Austria and Vienna therefore raised their age limits for alcohol beverages containing spirits to 18 years of age. Prior to 2019 these states had a general drinking and purchase age of 16 years. From now on the sale and consumption of beer, wine and other fermented alcohol beverages is prohibited to children and young people under the age of 16 years and the sale and consumption of spirits to minors under the age of 18 years throughout Austria.[121]
Country Administrative division De jure Notes
Drinking age[122] Purchase age
Private Public On-premise Off-premise
 Albania None 18[123] 18[123] The sale of alcohol beverage in bars, restaurants or other licensed premises, as well as other points of sale, is prohibited to minors under the age of 18 years. Vendors and operators of licensed premises are required to post a clearly legible notice in A4 format stating "Ndalohet shitja e alkoolit personave nën 18 vjeç" (It is prohibited to sell alcohol beverages to people under 18 years). Consumption by those under age 18 in public places is prohibited. [123]
 Andorra None[124] 18[124] 18[124] Selling, serving or supplying alcohol beverages is prohibited as well as public consumption of alcohol beverage by minors under the age of 18 years.[124]
 Armenia None[125] 18[125] There are no laws mandating alcohol vendors to ID potential underage drinkers. ID checks are very rarely, if ever, carried out[125]Criminal Code the Republic of Armenia (2003), Article 166: "Involvement, by a person who reached 18 years, of a child into regular use of alcohol drinks... is punished with correctional labor for up to 1 year, or with arrest for the term of 1-2 months, or with imprisonment for the term of 5 years"
 Austria None/
Unregulated[121]
16 (beer, wine and cider)
18 (distilled beverages)[121]
16 (beer, wine and cider)
18 (distilled beverages)[121]
The age limits are set out by the legislation of each federal state but where harmonized in January 2019.[121] Carinthia also requires adolescents to maintain a blood alcohol level below 0.05%.[126]
 Azerbaijan None/
Unregulated[127]
18[127] It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol to a minor under 18 years of age.[127]
 Belarus None/
Unregulated[128]
18[128] The law prohibits the sale of alcohol to anyone under the age of 18 years. However, the law is rarely enforced.[128]
 Belgium None/
Unregulated[129]
16 (beer, wine and cider)
18 (spirits)[129]
Since 10 January 2010, it is prohibited to "sell, serve, or offer" any form of distilled alcohol to those under the age of 18 or any alcohol drink to those under 16. So fermented drinks like beer or wine are permitted above 16.[129] Previously, it was prohibited to sell alcohol drinks to under-16s, but accompanying adults could buy drinks for them.
 Bosnia and Herzegovina None/
Unregulated[130]
18[130] Selling alcohol to a minor under the age of 18 years is an offence. The law does not prohibit minors from buying, attempting to buy or consuming alcohol.[130]
 Bulgaria None/
Unregulated[131]
18[131] By law, it is prohibited to serve or sell alcohol to any child under the age of 18. There is no restrictions for minors consuming alcohol.[131]
 Croatia None/
Unregulated[132]
18[132] It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol to anyone under 18 years of age. There is no minimum age to buy or consume alcohol by law.[132]
 Cyprus None/
Unregulated[133]
17[133] It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol to anyone under the age of 17 years. There is no minimum age to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol in public.[133]
 Czech Republic None/
Unregulated
18[134] It is prohibited to provide alcohol to minors[135] (punishable by fine or up to 1[136] or 2[137] year(s) imprisonment). Consumption itself is not prohibited by law.[138]
 Denmark None/
Unregulated[139]
18[139] 16 (<16.5% ABV)
18 (>=16.5% ABV)[139]
While there is no age requirement for drinking alcohol in Denmark, there are laws that prevent minors from buying alcohol:
  • In order to buy alcohol above 1.2% and below 16.5% ABV in stores, one must be 16 years of age.
  • In order to buy alcohol above 16.5% ABV in stores, one must be 18 years of age.[139]

By tradition, youths are privately allowed to drink alcohol after their confirmation.[140] If a shop or bar fails to ask for an ID card and is identified having sold alcohol to an underage, it is subject to fine. A national ID card, obtained in the local town hall, can serve as age verification.[141] This card is rarely used though since a passport or drivers license is more commonly used.[142]

Both the legal drinking and purchasing age in the Faroe Islands is 18.[]

 Estonia 18[143] 18[143] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years. Alcohol found in possession of any child can be confiscated by the police.
 Finland 18 (1.2-22% ABV)
20 (23-80% ABV)[144]
18 [144] 18 (1.2-22% ABV)
20 (23-80% ABV)[144]
All major grocery chains have implemented a policy to ask for ID if the customer looks under 30.[145] Stores may refuse to sell alcohol if the customer is accompanied by a minor, or if proxy purchasing is suspected. Purchasing alcohol on behalf of a minor is a criminal offence.[144][146]

Police may search minors in public places and confiscate or destroy any alcohol beverages in their possession. Incidents are reported to the legal guardian and social authorities, who may intervene with child welfare procedures. In addition, those aged 15 or above are subject to a fine.[147]

In private, offering alcohol to a minor is considered a criminal offence if it results in drunkenness and the act can be deemed reprehensible as a whole, considering the minor's age, degree of maturity and other circumstances.[144]

 France None/
Unregulated
18 France has no explicitly stated consumption age,[148] but selling alcohol to a minor (under 18) is prohibited[149] and can be fined 7500 euros.[148] This age was raised from 16 to 18 in 2009.[150][151]
 Georgia None/
Unregulated[152]
18[152] By Georgian law, the sale of alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years is prohibited.[152]
 Germany None/
Unregulated
14(beer, wine and cider if accompanied)
16 (beer, wine and cider)
18 (spirits and aliments containing spirits above negligible amounts)[153]
14(beer, wine and cider if accompanied)
16 (beer, wine and cider)
18 (spirits and aliments containing spirits above negligible amounts)[153]
It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply fermented alcohol beverages (beer, wine, cider and sparkling wine) to anyone under 16 years of age. However this age limit drops down to 14 if a minor is accompanied by his parent or legal guardian. It is generally prohibited to serve, sell or supply any beverage containing spirits and aliments containing spirits above negligible amounts, to anyone under the age of 18 years. Violation of the "Protection of Young Persons Act" can be fined up to EUR50.000.
 Gibraltar None/
Unregulated[154]
16 (beer, wine and cider)
18 (spirits)[154]
18[154] It is prohibited to sell alcohol drinks to anyone under the age of 18, other than the following two exceptions. The minimum age to be served in licensed premises is 16 if:[154]
  • The alcohol beverage is beer, wine or cider below 15% ABV, or
  • The alcohol beverage is served in a bottle, or a pre-packaged container below 5.5% ABV.
 Greece None/
Unregulated[155]
18 [155] 18[155] In 2008, the consumption of alcohol beverages was prohibited for minors in public. However, the law does not apply to private events or private premises.[155]
 Hungary None/
Unregulated
18[47] 18[47]
 Iceland 20[156] 20[156][157] Possession or consumption of alcohol by people under the age of 20 is not an offence, but supplying them with alcohol is.
 Ireland None/
Unregulated (on private residence with permission from parents or guardians)[158]
18[158] 18[158] It is prohibited for minors to buy alcohol or for a third party to attempt to buy it for minors. It is prohibited to purchase alcohol for anybody under the age of consent without permission from their guardians.[159]
 Italy None/
Unregulated[160]
18[161][160] In 2012 the then Health Minister Renato Balduzzi proposed to raise the age to 18.[160] Selling alcohol to those under the age of 18 in shops carries a fine between EUR250 and EUR1000. Serving alcohol beverages to those under the age of 16 is a criminal offense and is punished with prison up to one year, if the individual is 16 or 17 it will be treated as an offense that is fined between EUR250 and EUR1000 (Legge n. 189/2013).
 Kosovo None/
Unregulated
Unknown
 Latvia None/
Unregulated [162]
18[162] It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol beverages to any minor under the age of 18 years. There is no minimum age to consume or possess alcohol.[162]
 Liechtenstein None/
Unregulated
16 beer, wine and cider
18 spirits and spirit-based beverages[163]
16 beer, wine and cider
18 spirits and spirit-based beverages
Wine, beer and ciders as well as some other party drinks sometimes without spirits may be purchased by the age of 16. Spirits as well as alcopops may be sold only to people at least 18.[163]
 Lithuania 20[120] 20[120] It is prohibited to sell, serve or supply alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 20 years. People under the age of 20 are prohibited from consuming alcohol beverages or from possessing them. The minimum age was raised from 18 to 20 in 2018.[120]
 Luxembourg None/
Unregulated [164]
16[164] It is prohibited to sell or serve alcohol beverages >1.2% ABV to any person under the age of 16 years. Violation is fined EUR251 to EUR1.000.[164]
 Malta None/
Unregulated[165]
17[165] 17[165] Must provide identification upon request.
 Moldova None/
Unregulated[114]
18[114] It is prohibited to sell, or serve alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 18 years. It is not prohibited for minors to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol. The minimum purchase age was raised from 16 to 18 in 2012.[113][114]
 Montenegro Unknown Unknown
 Netherlands None/
Unregulated
18 18 The legal age for purchasing and consumption of alcohol beverages was raised from 16 to 18 since 2014. Alcohol is commonly available upon parental permission. Selling alcohol beverages to people under 18 is prohibited, buying alcohol beverages for someone else under the age of 18 is also prohibited.[]
 North Macedonia None/
Unregulated[166]
18[166] Must show an ID card upon request. In certain smaller places, such as family-owned convenience stores and street kiosks, there is little to no enforcement on how old or young somebody purchases alcohol. There is little to no enforcement for drinking privately, but drinking in bars may require an ID.
 Norway None/
Unregulated[167]
18 (<22%)
20 (>=22% ABV)[47]
Selling alcohol to or buying alcohol for minors is prohibited. Minors are defined as under 18 for beer and wine, under 20 for drinks that contain 22% ABV or more. Minors who buy alcohol are not held criminally responsible; instead, the crime lies with those who sold it or obtained it for them.

Alcohol with more than 60% ABV is generally not sold in Norway, although exceptions may be made by the government for specific products.[168]

Alcohol possessed by minors may be confiscated as evidence. Drinking in public is prohibited, though this is rarely enforced in recreational areas.[169]

 Poland None/
Unregulated[170]
18[170] Article 15 of The Act on Upbringing in Sobriety and Counteracting Alcoholism[171] clearly states that buyers or persons being served must be at least 18 and prove it with ID if they look like they may not be at least that age. There is no mention of consumption age in this or any other act in Poland. Drinking in public places, with the exception of designated drinking zones, is prohibited regardless of age.
 Portugal None/
Unregulated[172]
18[172] 18[172]
 Romania None/
Unregulated[173]
18[173] 18[173] According to law 61/1991 updated in 2008, paragraphs 21-25, it is prohibited to serve or sell alcohol to minors.
 Russia None/
Unregulated
18[174] There is no law or regulation in Russia that prohibits minors from consuming alcohol, but selling alcohol to minors is prohibited by federal and additional regional laws.
 San Marino None/
Unregulated
16[175]
 Serbia None/
Unregulated
16[176]
 Slovakia 18[177] 18[177]
 Slovenia None/
Unregulated[178]
18[178] There is no law regulating the possession and consumption, but it is prohibited to sell or offer alcohol of any kind to minors.
 Spain None/
Unregulated
18 Asturias was the last autonomous community in Spain where the drinking age was increased to 18 (previously 16) on 1 May 2015.[179]
 Sweden None (ABV)
18 (beer >2.25% and
20 (>3.5% ABV in Systembolaget shops)[180]
18[180] None (ABV)
18 (beer >2.25% and
20 (>3.5% ABV)[180]
It is legal for anyone at any age to drink, but it is prohibitedl to supply anyone under the age of 20, any beverage containing more than 3.5% ABV, and supply anyone under the age of 18 beer containing more than 2.25% ABV, except in a venue licensed to sell alcohol, who are allowed to sell alcohol to anyone over 18. It is also legal to serve an underage person alcohol in a private place, provided it's a limited amount and done in moderation.[181] The reason for lower limit in bars than in Systembolaget shops is that bartenders have a legal responsibility for how drunk a guest gets.
  Switzerland   Switzerland (federal law) None/
Unregulated
(See notes)
16 (fermented alcohol drinks with less than 15% ABV and natural wines with less than 18% ABV)[182]
18 (spirits)[183]
Whoever offers or supplies alcohol beverages to a child under the age of 16 years in an amount which is harmful to one's health is punished with imprisonment up to 3 years or a fine.[184] Whoever sells or supplies spirits to a person under the age of 18 years is punished with a fine up to 10.000 CHF.[185]
 Ticino None/
Unregulated
18 Canton Ticino prohibits the selling of any type of alcohol to minors under the age of 18.[186]
 Turkey 18[47] 18[47]
 Ukraine None/
Unregulated
18[47]
 United Kingdom  England
 Wales
None (under medical supervision, or in an emergency)
5[187]
18[187] 16 (beer, wine or cider with meal)[188]
18[187]
18[187] Legislation in  England and  Wales:
  • It is prohibited to sell, serve, offer or consume alcohol beverages on licensed premises under the age of 18,[187] other than the following two exceptions:
    • Minors aged 16 or 17 may consume wine, beer or cider on licensed premises when ordered with a meal, and accompanied by an adult.
    • It is prohibited to sell liqueur confectionery to anyone under 16.
  • It is permitted to serve alcohol to minors between the ages 5 and 17 inclusive in the home.
  • It is prohibited to permit minors under the age of 18 to consume alcohol beverages, other than in the home or licensed premises (as noted above), unless under medical supervision or in an emergency.
  • People over 17 are entitled to their own duty-free allowance, which includes alcohol.
 Scotland None/
Unregulated
18[188] 16 (beer, wine or cider with meal)[188]
18
18[188] Legislation in  Scotland:
  • It is prohibited to sell, serve, offer or consume alcohol beverages in public under the age of 18.[189]
    • Minors aged 16 or 17 may consume wine, beer or cider on licensed premises when ordered with a meal.
    • It is prohibited to sell liqueur confectionery to anyone under 16, however, consumption is permitted.
  • People over 17 and over are entitled to their own duty-free allowance, which includes alcohol.[190]
 Northern Ireland None/
Unregulated
18 18 Legislation in Northern Ireland:

It is prohibited to sell, serve, offer or consume alcohol beverages in public under the age of 18.

 United Kingdom Under the BBPA's Challenge 21 and Challenge 25 schemes, customers attempting to buy alcohol beverages are asked to prove their age if in the retailer's opinion they look under 21[191] (or optionally 25) even though the law states they must be a minimum of 18. Many supermarket and off-licence chains display Challenge 21 (or Challenge 25) notices stating that they will not serve people who look under 21 (or 25) without ID.

Oceania

Minimum legal age to purchase alcohol by country (2015):
  Minimum purchase age of 21 years
  Minimum purchase age of 18 years
  No minimum purchase age
Country State/region/province De jure Notes
Drinking age Purchase age
United States  American Samoa 21[192]
 Australia Varies by state. 18[47] All states restrict purchasing to over 18, but exceptions may apply if accompanied by a parent or guardian. The government-supported Youth Law Australia portal offers details on consumption and supply age limits by state.[193]
 Fiji 18[194] The drinking age was previously 21 but was lowered to 18 in 2009.[194]
United States  Guam 21
 Micronesia, Federated States of None (at federal level) 21 in states of Pohnpei and Yap

18 in states of Kosrae and Chuuk

Code of the State of Pohnpei (2012), Section 2-109

Yap State Code (1987), Section 405

Kosrae State Code (1997), Sections S.1.201(44) and 13.517(3)

Draft Chuuk State Code (2012) Section 1307(1) - unenacted draft code citing source laws

 New Zealand None 18[195] Minimum age applies for beverages with 1.15% ABV or over; no restrictions on beverages less than 1.15% ABV.[196]
Persons under 18 may drink outside private residences or private functions if accompanied by their parent or legal guardian. Alcohol may be supplied to minors only by, or with express consent from, their parent or legal guardian.[197]
United States  Northern Mariana Islands 21[198]
 Palau 21[199] It is prohibited to sell or serve any alcohol beverage to a person under 21 years of age. Minors may access a bar or licensed premises only if accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. Minors buying, consuming or attempting to buy alcohol are committing an offence. The law provides an exception for the consumption of alcohol by minors as part of a religiously recognized ceremony.[199]
 Papua New Guinea 18[] It is prohibited for a minor to purchase, consume or attempt to purchase alcohol beverages. Any licence holder has to ensure that the customer who he sells or serves alcohol to, is at least 18 years of age. Violation of this law is punishable by a fine.[]Liquor Licensing Act (1963) Art 102-103
 Samoa 21[200] Selling or serving alcohol to a person under the age of 21 years is punishable with a three hundred dollar fine, imprisonment for nine months, or both.[201] "does not apply to a licensee of a food and beverage license provided that the person under the age of 21 years is under the supervision of an attending parent."
 Solomon Islands None[201] 21[201] Selling or serving alcohol to a person under the age of 21 years is punishable with a three hundred dollar fine, imprisonment for nine months, or both.[201]
 Tokelau 18[202]
 Tonga 18[203] Selling, serving or supplying alcohol to anyone under 18 years is prohibited. It is also prohibited for minors to buy, attempt to buy or consume alcohol in any public place and any violation of this law is punishable by a $1,000 fine.[203]
 Vanuatu 18[204] It is unlawful to sell, serve or supply alcohol to any person under the age of 18 years. Violation of the law is fined up to VT 25,000 or by a term of imprisonment not exceeding 3 months, or by both, fine and imprisonment. Any minor under the age of 18 years, being found in possession or consumption of alcohol is fined up to VT 10,000.[204]


See also

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