Alcohol Controls Have No Consistency
Anyone who has ever bought alcohol out-of-state should realize how different things can be. Whether it's something simple like being able to buy hard liquor in a grocery store versus having to go to a state liquor store just to get beer, or something serious like how long you have to contact an attorney when pulled over on a suspicion for driving under the influence, there are massive gulfs between the laws of each state. Having access to that information can save you from minor hassles and major catastrophies alike.
While many places prohibit having open containers of alcohol in public or on roadways this isn't true everywhere.
- The Las Vegas strip is notorious for being the only place in the state of Nevada where walking down the street while drinking is perfectly acceptable.
- The state of Mississippi actually allows drivers to drink alcoholic beverages WHILE driving, so long as their blood alcohol content stays below 0.08
- Many other states allow opened containers anywhere in a vehicle, though most specify certain ways they must be stored and fine violaters.
Driving Under the Influence
We all know that drinking and driving is a bad thing. But just how bad each state considers it to be, and the consequences set, varies a lot from place to place.For a first time offender,
- Some states suspend licenses for up to 3 years. Some won't do it at all.
- A first fine can range from $300 to $7,250
- There are places that impose jail terms of up to a year
Some states require interlocks, rehab, driver education, community service or any combination of these (including none).
Two states allow 24/7 alcohol sales, though one sets a cutoff for bars/clubs of 2am but allows cities to abolish that cutoff. Everywhere else varies a TON.
- Some states ban sales on Sundays
- Some of those make exceptions for specific holidays
- One state doesn't allow sales until after noon
- Some go as late as 5am
For minors attempting to buy, it can be a $50 slap on the wrist in some places and up to $1,000 and/or possibly a year in prison in others.