Different Alcohol Regulations in Spain and the U.S

Spain and the United states may have some kind of similarities when looking both countries from the outside; both are developed countries for example. However when we look at the inside of these countries, we may find some differences regarding regulations and laws that currently determine the law system.

The biggest comparison of alcohol tolerance between Spain and the United States is the drinking age. In Spain the citizens have an easier access to alcohol than in the United states, considering that in Spain hard alcohol such as Rum, Whiskey, Gin or Vodka can be purchased at the supermarket, on the contrary of the United States, where these kind of beverages are only sold in stores specified in liquors.

According to The Federal Uniform Drinking Age Act of 1984 sets the minimum legal drinking age to 21 and every State abides by that standard. This act approves the fact that Federal government can withhold ten percent of Federal funding for highways from States that do not prohibit people under age 21 from buying or publically possessing any alcoholic beverage.  While every State abides by this standard, State law varies on specifics about possession and exceptions to the law, such as allowing people under 21 to drink with their parents.

Regarding the law that regulates alcohol consumption in Spain. The Ley Nacional de Lucha Contra el Alcoholismo  (National law against the alcoholism) approved in March 31, 1997. States that no alcohol beverages may be sold or consumed by individuals under 18 years old.

This law would not only limit the age drinking but also limit all the advertising oriented to foment alcohol consumption in underage people. The government is actually analyzing the possibility to print labels about the prohibition of alcohol consumption in containers and shops.

A very impactful fact about drinking consumption in Spain is that the average age of Spaniard scholars starting to drink is 13,7 years old. Even though the government of Spain passes law to regulate the age, underage individuals somehow still have access to alcoholic beverages as this fact confirms.


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