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The Weirdest Drinking Laws from Around the World

Weird laws about drinking are a worldwide phenomenon: international alcohol laws are sometimes pretty out there and America has some truly strange regulations on the books as well. Alcohol laws from around the world can govern anything from how much wine a married woman can drink to penalties for DUI, and importing wine from province to province. Many are arcane, and others barely enforced, but if you're going out of the country, you'll want to do a quick check for their drinking laws.

In the US, you might want to do the same thing. Planning on a happy hour out of state? Better check if it's legal. Smitten with your bartender in Nebraska? Hanky panky with them is out of the question. Want to buy pretty much any alcohol in Pennsylvania? You'd better have a copy of the civil code with you, because it's insanely complex.

Some of these weird drinking laws and funny laws about alcohol are just plain silly, others are well-intentioned, and some are just relics of a bygone era.

  • 1
    293 VOTES

    Texas: You Can't Chug A Beer While Standing

    A long-forgotten law in Texas says it's illegal to take more than three sips of beer at one time while standing. Needless to say, this is a difficult law to enforce.

    Is this weird?
  • 2
    337 VOTES

    Utah: Some Restaurants Must Pour Drinks Behind A Screen

    Mormon-dominated Utah has long had complicated liquor laws. In fact, until 2009, bars had to operate as private clubs that charged membership fees. Those laws were repealed, but many restaurants now have to pour drinks behind an opaque pane of glass, so as to not tempt teetotalers and children. These so-called "Zion curtains" used to be more common, though the laws have relaxed a bit.

    Is this weird?
  • 3
    148 VOTES

    Bolivia: Married Women Are Allowed Just One Drink

    By law, married women in La Paz, Bolivia, are allowed to enjoy just one glass of wine in a public bar or restaurant. The statute claims that women who have more than that to drink are “morally and ­sexually lax,” and they can be legally divorced by their husbands if they are caught over-indulging.

    In practice, this law is rarely enforced.

    Is this weird?
  • 4
    244 VOTES

    Scotland: Wearing Underwear Under A Kilt Will Cost You Two Beers

    A law supposedly on the books in Scotland says that any Scottish gentleman found to be wearing underwear under his kilt will be fined two beers. It's likely that this law doesn't actually exist, and if it does, it's never been enforced.

    Is this weird?