Drinking Age in Norway: Everything You Need To Know

Drinking Age in Norway

Here is a closer look at the drinking age in Norway, as well as a quick glance at Norwegian drinking culture. This topic is right up your alley if you intend to visit this scenic Nordic country and enjoy what it has to offer. We will also be answering any questions you may have regarding the legal Norwegian drinking age with your parents or if teenagers are allowed to consume alcohol there, in case one is coming along with you. 

Compared to its neighbor (and friendly rival), Sweden, Norway actually has a pretty large drinking culture. One of their most popular alcoholic beverage is Aquavit, a Scandinavian distilled spirit made from grains or potatoes and has a herb-like flavor. Of course, since Norwegians love to drink, it is pretty much expected that there are plenty of rules there in regard to drinking alcohol. So, without further ado, here is a couple of them.

What is the Legal Drinking Age in Norway?

Norway is unique as it has two official legal drinking ages. If consuming, owning, or purchasing any beverage that contains less than 22% alcohol, then the legal age should be 18 and above. Meanwhile, for drinks that have 22% alcohol and above, the legal age is 20. This also means that anyone below 18 is considered a minor and should not be consuming or purchasing these aforementioned drinks. 

What is the Legal Drinking Age in Norway for Tourists and Foreigners?

If you are a foreigner or a tourist visiting the country, this means you have to follow the official drinking laws in Norway, which are 18 or 20. For those who are visiting the country but aren’t too keen on drinking alcohol, beware – A lot of gatherings in Norway, no matter if it involves friends, family members, co-workers, etc. – Involve drinking alcohol. However, there are still plenty of activities you can do in Norway without consuming liquor. 

Do You Need an ID to Drink in Norway?

Drinking Age in Norway

Yes, you do need to bring an ID with you when purchasing alcohol in Norway. You can also use other valid documents, such as passports or driver’s licenses. Please note that the age restrictions in the country, despite its alcohol consumption, are actually quite strict. This means that any establishment that sells or allows the consumption of alcohol, such as bars, restaurants, nightclubs, liquor stores, etc., will take these restrictions seriously. 

Legal Drinking Age in Norway with Parents

Even though Norway’s alcohol culture is huge and you’d be hard-pressed to find any type of celebration that doesn’t include alcohol, providing alcohol to minors is still not allowed in the country. This includes parents who allow their children or teenage offspring to consume alcohol. However, there have been instances in which parents have gotten away with providing alcoholic drinks to their children, especially in big gatherings. 

Legal Drinking Age in Norway by Region 

The entire legal drinking ages of 18 and 20 apply to all parts of Norway, including its capital, Oslo. The reason why the laws regarding alcohol consumption are so strict there is because of political, social, and even religious concerns. The government does indeed have a strict policy regarding free alcohol sales, but this hasn’t stopped the locals from drinking their favorite alcohol during a gathering or even by themselves. 

Can Minors Drink in Norway with Their Parents?

In a recent report from the website ScienceNorway, it was revealed that alcohol consumption among underage Norwegian teens – Even with their parents present – Was associated with the risk of severe alcohol consumption and alcoholism as they got older. The parents of these teenagers also enjoy consuming alcohol themselves and don’t intervene in the vices of their children. So yes, drinking among young teenagers in Norway is common, but this goes against the official alcohol laws.

Consequences of Breaking the Drinking Age Law in Norway 

It’s already a given that drinking and driving are prohibited everywhere, and that goes in places like Norway as well. The average blood alcohol level in the country should only be above 0.2 g and up to 0.5 g/l. Depending on the severity of the crime and if there are any injuries or death involved, the punishment could range from paying a heavy fine to license withdrawal and jail time. 

Another alcohol-related crime you could get punished for is public intoxication. In Norway, drinking in public is not allowed. If the police catch you making a ruckus and causing trouble, then you could end up paying 10,000 Krones. 

A Rundown of the Drinking Age Law in Norway

Now that you know about the drinking age in Norway, as well as its drinking laws, you must remember them in case you end up visiting the country for any reason. Drinking is indeed rampant, but the laws are very strict and with good reason. It’s not prohibited to drink alcohol there, but just know your limits and you’ll still have a fantastic time in the end. 

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