Coming to the Outer Banks, most vacationers live on a strict time schedule: It’s 5 o’clock somewhere. About 5 million people travel to the Outer Banks every summer, and a large amount of those people come with a drinking agenda. While it is important to make the most of your travels, a run-in with law enforcement may turn your dream vacation into a nightmare. On the Outer Banks, people are fortunate enough to enjoy alcoholic beverages while they are at the beach, but North Carolina and Outer Banks towns have put a few specific regulations in place. Knowledge is power. Knowing what is legal and illegal when it comes to alcoholic beverages can save you a run-in with the law and also prevent a great deal of stress.
The Outer Banks is home to some of the best beaches in the nation. A contributing factor to this may be because it is legal to drink alcohol on Outer Banks beaches. It is not exactly an alcohol free-for-all, there are a few laws put in place to ensure your safety as well as the safety of other beach-goers. For everyone’s safety, glass containers are prohibited on all Outer Banks beaches. Glass can break and get lost in the sand, and later that same piece of glass may end up in someone’s foot. Plastic containers or aluminum cans are acceptable alternatives for holding alcoholic beverages. Littering is also illegal on all beaches. Try to keep the beaches clean by disposing of all bottles and cans in a trash can. It is also important for you to know your alcohol limit, because disorderly conduct can get you arrested. Use discretion and be respectful of others around you. Remember, the beach is a public place meant to be enjoyed by everyone, whether they are drinking or not.
In North Carolina, it is legal to have an open container of alcohol in a passenger vehicle depending on the type of alcohol and where the alcohol is placed within the car. An open container of alcohol is defined as a bottle, can, or other receptacle containing any amount of alcohol that has a broken seal. It is always illegal to have any of the following types of alcohol in a vehicle: spirituous liquor (bourbon, gin, vodka, etc.), fortified wine (wine with an alcohol content higher than 17%), and mixed drinks. An open container of alcohol cannot be located in the passenger area of the vehicle. The passenger area of a car is the area designed to seat the driver and passengers, and this space also includes the glove box. Open containers of alcohol need to be secured in the trunk of a car or behind the last row of seats in the hatchback of a vehicle.
In some cases, open containers of alcohol are permitted in passenger areas of vehicles. The driver of the vehicle must not have consumed any alcohol, and the beverage must be a malt beverage (beer, malt liquor, ale, hard lemonade) or unfortified wine (table wine, champagne). Vehicles allow for open containers of alcohol in the passenger area when:
Open containers of alcohol are not acceptable in any other commercial vehicles. Pay attention to where open containers of alcohol are kept in your car to prevent breaking any laws.
When visiting the Outer Banks be sure to have a great time. The people are friendly, there are many sights to see, and you can enjoy your alcoholic beverages on the beach. Make the most of your trip, but remember to obey these alcohol regulations. You do not want to leave the beach with a hefty fine or a court date!
Now that you know the rules, it's time to play ball! Visit Buffalo City Jug Shop at Milepost 14 and fill your cooler with the ice cold canned and bottled craft brew or fill a "beach safe" plastic growler with one of our 24 specialty beers on tap.
Located on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, Buffalo City Jug Shop is the first growler store on the beach. Satisfy your taste for craft brew with 24 taps, and a full selection of select bottles and cans.
Buffalo City Jug Shop1900 S Croatan HwySuite BKill Devil Hills, NC 27948