It’s illegal to drink on the beach in Hawaii. People who drink on the beach usually sneak in alcohol and drink it in secret.
In America, most counties and states have disallowed alcohol on the beach. It is not uncommon for the coast guard to catch you and make you pay a fine.
Most beaches in America don’t allow coolers, glass, and unsealed bottles of alcohol near beaches and public places. Hawaii is no exception to this.
Although a popular tourist destination, the state has some strict rules regarding alcohol consumption.
The popular image of enjoying exotic cocktails at Hawaiian beaches is very inaccurate.
If you are planning a trip to Hawaii but are unsure about its alcohol rules, you have come to the right place. In this article, I will help you understand the alcohol rules in Hawaii and where you can or cannot enjoy booze in the state.
Is It Legal To Drink On The Beach In Hawaii?
Contrary to popular belief, Drinking alcohol on the beach in Hawaii is illegal. If the cops or the coast guard catches you, you will face repercussions.
No, all those TV ads and illustrations of sipping cocktails on Hawaiian beaches are not genuine. The most they can be are non-alcoholic beverages dressed as cocktails.
You cannot drink alcohol on Hawaiian beaches. The locals do not want drunk people loitering and harassing other tourists, so they have banned alcohol at the beach.
In fact, you cannot drink alcohol in any public place in Hawaii. These places include parking lots and public parks.
Only places that are licensed to serve alcohol allow drinking within premises. Additionally, you can enjoy them in the comfort of your home or hotel if they have a drinking policy.
You might spot a few people trying to sneak alcohol at the beach and drink them. However, I would advise you not to follow in their footsteps.
In most cases, you will be caught by a cop and get your alcohol taken away. If your luck is that bad, you might even have to pay hefty fines for illegal drinking.
Not every cop understands tourists’ sentiments, so it’s better to not rile them up and question their authority. It would be more suitable to enjoy alcohol in private spaces.
Sure, you can bring unsealed bottles of alcohol to the beach. But opening them and drinking them in public will bring you a lot of trouble.
Does Hawaii Allow Open Alcohol Containers?
No, Hawaii doesn’t allow open alcohol containers at the beach. You can, however, carry unsealed bottles or cans of alcohol at the beach.
Most places that disallow drinking in public also have a no-open-container policy. This ensures that people don’t trick the cops and drink sneakily when out of sight.
There is no harm in carrying around sealed bottles. You can purchase them at stores and take them to the beach.
However, breaking the seal or drinking will cause trouble. Even if you don’t drink the alcohol, the cops will question you and take away your drink.
Again, you may even be fined or asked to leave the place immediately. Open containers are only allowed in private or at licensed places like bars and pubs.
What Time Is The Last Call For Alcohol In Hawaii?
The last call for alcohol in Hawaii is 1 am. However, some pubs and bars in Waikiki can serve alcohol till 4 am.
Like many other states in the USA, pubs and bars in Hawaii serve alcohol till 2 am. Therefore, most places in Hawaii take their last call at 1 am.
This allows customers plenty of time to place orders so that the bartender can stay within the time limit while making drinks. Some pubs in Waikiki have a special cabaret license that allows them to serve alcohol till 4 am.
Depending on the bar, their last call usually comes around 2:30 am or even 3 am.
Let’s say you are planning to stay out late. In that case, it’s better to call ahead and know the individual policies of the pub beforehand.
Why Do Beaches In Hawaii Not Allow Alcohol?
Beaches in Hawaii do not serve alcohol because people can get drunk and cause trouble. If everyone starts drinking at the beach, it will neither be safe nor family-friendly.
Alcohol at beaches is not a great idea because people often tend to overdo things. Big groups may end up drinking too much and cause a scene at the beach.
Too many drunk tourists also become a massive problem for locals and the cops who control the situation. You cannot continually monitor how much people drink, so it’s better to ban it.
Additionally, the locals in the state are not very keen on the public consumption of alcohol.
I’m pretty sure you now know the alcohol rules of Hawaii. I know many of you will be disappointed in hearing these facts, but there is not much you can do to change it.
I recommend you follow these rules strictly when visiting Hawaii. They are enforced for particular reasons, and it’s better not to argue with the cops when they catch you red-handed.
If you still need to include something meaningful from this article, here’s a quick recap.
Drinking alcohol on the beach in Hawaii is illegal. Also, you cannot carry open containers of alcohol at the beach.
My name is Jeyn Dashner and I am the founder of WanderFever. I have worked as a travel journalist for many years, and exploring new places is my greatest pleasure in life.