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Alcohol law in Germany

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The alcohol law in Germany is one of the least restrictive in the world. The German alcohol laws are more defined towards protecting youth from abusing the alcohol. But that does not mean that young people are not allowed to consume alcohol, rather they are taught to have it sensibly.


Legal Drinking Age
Germany has three legalized drinking ages

  • If you have turned 14, then you are eligible to consume undistilled alcoholic beverages like wine and beer under the supervision of your parents.
  • If you have turned 16, then you can have undistilled alcoholic beverages independently without being scrutinized by parents.
  • If you have turned 18, they you are eligible to buy distilled alcohol.



The cases of alcohol abuse amongst minors have led to huge public outcry demanding that legal drinking age should be raised. But most politicians representing the government have discarded this notion saying that there is a well –defined alcohol law in Germany and only the concerned authorities need to follow them rigidly. Alcohol consumption by adolescents is more a sort of traditionally accepted practice in Germany, so there are no stricter laws imposing its usage. 



The alcohol vendors face prosecution if found guilty of bypassing state established alcohol laws. German alcohol law also punishes the bystanders who support the underage drinking. However, these restrictions are well-known throughout the country; still some vendors are found to violate the laws from time to time. The alcohol law in Germany does not prosecute the minors directly for illegal alcohol consumption; instead they grip the sources from which minors have acquired alcohol.


Working Hours

The working hours of the authorized alcohol selling establishments are controlled by state authorities or more precisely individual towns and cities where they operate. The specified closing time was abolished in many of the German towns in recent past. However, it is still strongly followed in Baden-Württemberg where the sale of liquor is forbidden between (10 PM-5AM) in any of the authorized alcohol selling premises. But laws prohibiting alcoholic consumption on People’s Memorial Day (Volkstrauertag), All Saints Day and Good Friday are followed through all states. But still people can buy their drinks from petrol stations or supermarkets.


The BAC limit is set at 0.05% and some found violating this limit is subjected to harsh imprisonment and suspension of driver’s license.


The alcohol law in Germany is more relaxed still they are well-defined and very formal in comparison to other European countries.    


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Alcohol Law In Germany