Drinking Age By Country 2019

if you live in a country like the United States, you probably already know that you must be at least 21 years of age or older in order to purchase or consume alcoholic beverages. Surprisingly, this is one of the highest drinking ages in the world. Just to the north of the US is Canada, which has a legal drinking age of 18 to 19.

Believe it or not, there are even some nations where the drinking age is far lower. Some nations have laws in place prohibiting minors from purchasing alcohol but no laws preventing the consumption of alcohol. In other nations, drinking is outlawed entirely, regardless of age.

This article will focus on the legal drinking ages in nations around the world. We’ll kick this off by taking a look at the nations that require residents to be at least 21 years old in order to consume alcohol. These nations also require a person to be at least 21 in order to even purchase alcohol unless otherwise noted. Those nations are:

Cameroon: Can purchase and consume at age 18 if accompanied by a person 21 years of age or older Central African Republic: Only required when sold on-premises (such as in a bar or restaurant) Egypt Equatorial Guinea Guam India: Varies from 18 to 25 based on jurisdiction Indonesia Kazakhstan Malaysia Northern Mariana Islands Oman Palau Samoa Sri Lanka United Arab Emirates: Varies from 18 to 21 based on jurisdiction United States

Some nations require a person to be at least 20 years old to consume alcohol. A person must also be at least 20 in order to purchase alcohol in these nations, unless otherwise noted:

Finland: Must be at least 20 to possess or purchase alcohol that is 23% to 80% ABV Japan Lithuania Paraguay Thailand

In the following nations, you must be at least 19 years old to consume alcohol. All people must be at least 19 in order to purchase alcohol unless otherwise noted:

Canada: Must be at least 19 in certain provinces

In the following nations, the legal drinking age is at least 18 years. A person must be at least 18 to purchase alcohol unless otherwise noted.

Albania Andorra Argentina Australia Austria: Must be at least 18 to purchase or consume distilled beverages Bahamas Belize Bermuda Bhutan Canada: 18 in the provinces of Alberta, Manitoba, and Quebec, 19 in other provinces Cameroon: When accompanied by a person 21 years of age or older Cayman Islands Chile China Comoros Estonia Eswatini Falkland Islands Fiji Finland: Must be at least 18 to purchase or consume drinks that are 1.2% to 22% ABV or to drink in bars, clubs, and restaurants Gabon: On-premises purchase or consumption online Germany: Must be at least 18 to purchase or consume spirits Ghana Grenada Guatemala Guyana Honduras Hong Kong Hungary Jordan Kyrgyzstan Lebanon Lesotho Liechtenstein: Must be at least 18 to purchase or consume spirits Maldives: Illegal but can be sold to tourists that are 18 years of age or older Mexico Micronesia Mongolia Montenegro Mozambique Nepal Netherlands Niger Nigeria North Korea North Macedonia Pakistan: Illegal for most but a drinking age of 18 is enforced for non-Muslims Papua New Guinea Philippines Puerto Rico Rwanda Senegal Seychelles Singapore: Must be 18 to purchase alcohol and consume it in public places Slovakia South Africa South Sudan Spain Switzerland: Must be at least 18 to purchase spirits Syria Taiwan Tajikistan Tokelau Tonga Turkey Turkmenistan Ukraine United Kingdom U.S. Virgin Islands Vanuatu Vietnam Zambia

In the following nation, you must be at least 17 to purchase or consume alcohol:

Brunei: Non-Muslims can drink at age 17 with restrictions Malta

In the following nations, you must be at least 16 to drink alcohol. You must also be at least 16 to purchase alcohol unless otherwise noted.

Austria: Must be 16 in certain provinces. In other provinces, you can purchase beer, wine, and cider at age 16. British Virgin Islands Germany: Can purchase and consume beer, wine, and cider at age 16 Guyana: Can purchase beer, wine, or cider with meal. Otherwise, must be 18 to purchase or consume. Liechtenstein: Can purchase beer, wine, and cider at age 16. Must be 18 to purchase spirits. Palestinian Authority Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

In these nations, you must be at least 15 years of age or older to consume alcohol. You must also be at least 15 to purchase alcohol unless otherwise noted.

Central African Republic: Must be at least 15 for off-premises consumption and possession

In the following nations, there is no legal age limit for consuming alcohol. There is also no restrictions on purchasing alcohol unless otherwise noted:

Angola: No age limit except in Luanda Province, where you must be 18 to purchase or consume alcohol Anguilla: Must be at least 18 to purchase Antigua and Barbuda: Must be at least 16 to purchase Armenia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Azerbaijan: Must be at least 18 to purchase Bahrain Barbados: Must be at least 16 to purchase Belarus: Must be at least 18 to purchase Belgium: Must be at least 16 to purchase beer, wine, and cider. Must be at least 18 to purchase spirits. Bolivia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Bosnia and Herzegovina: Must be at least 18 to purchase Botswana: No legal drinking age but it is illegal for any person to supply a minor under age 18 with alcohol Brazil: Must be at least 18 to purchase Bulgaria: Must be at least 18 to purchase Burundi: No legal drinking age, but people under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to purchase Cambodia Cape Verde: Must be at least 18 to purchase Colombia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Costa Rica: Must be at least 18 to purchase Croatia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Cuba: Must be at least 16 to purchase Cyprus: Must be at least 17 to purchase Czech Republic: Must be at least 18 to purchase Denmark: Must be at least 16 or 18 to purchase, based on ABV Dominican Republic: Must be at least 18 to purchase Ecuador: Must be at least 18 to purchase El Salvador: Must be at least 18 to purchase Eritrea: Must be at least 18 to purchase Ethiopia: Must be at least 15 to purchase France: Must be at least 18 to purchase Gambia: Must be at least 17 to purchase Georgia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Gibraltar: Must be at least 16 to purchase beer, wine, or cider. Must be at least 18 to purchase other alcohol Greece: Must be at least 18 to purchase Guinea-Bissau Haiti: Must be at least 18 to purchase Iceland: Must be at least 20 to purchase Ireland: Must be at least 18 to purchase. No age limit if alcohol is consumed at a private residence with permission from a parent or guardian. Israel: Must be at least 18 to purchase Italy: Must be at least 18 to purchase Jamaica: Must be at least 18 to purchase Kenya: Must be at least 18 to purchase Kosovo Latvia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Liberia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Luxembourg: Must be at least 16 to purchase Macau Malawi: Must be at least 18 to purchase Mauritius: Must be at least 18 to purchase Moldova: Must be at least 18 to purchase Morocco Myanmar: Must be at least 18 to purchase Namibia: Must be at least 18 to purchase New Zealand: Must be at least 18 to purchase Nicaragua: Must be at least 14 to purchase in a restaurant, 18 to purchase elsewhere Norway: Must be 18 or 20 to purchase based on ABV Panama: Must be at least 18 to purchase Peru: Must be at least 18 to purchase Poland: Must be at least 18 to purchase Portugal: Must be at least 18 to purchase Republic of the Congo: Must be at least 18 to purchase Romania: Must be at least 18 to purchase Russia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Serbia: Must be at least 16 to purchase Singapore: No age limit in private places. Must be at least 18 to purchase. Must be 18 to consume in public places. Slovenia: Must be at least 18 to purchase Solomon Islands: Must be at least 21 to purchase South Korea: Must be at least 19 to purchase Sweden: Age restrictions on purchase of alcohol based on ABV Switzerland: Must be at least 18 or 19 to purchase Tanzania: Must be at least 18 to purchase Togo Trinidad and Tobago: Must be at least 18 to purchase Tunisia Turks and Caicos Islands: Must be at least 18 to purchase Uganda: Must be at least 18 to purchase spirits. Must be at least 16 to purchase wine, beer, porter, cider, or native liquor with a meal. Uruguay: Must be at least 18 to purchase Uzbekistan: Must be at least 20 to purchase Venezuela: Must be at least 18 to purchase Western Sahara Zimbabwe

In these nations, the consumption or possession of alcohol is illegal:

Afghanistan Bangladesh: Illegal for Muslims Iran Iraq Kuwait Libya Maldives: Illegal for residents Pakistan: Illegal for Muslims Qatar Saudi Arabia Somalia Sudan Yemen