The legal drinking age in Paris and the rest of France is currently 16. This means that individuals over the age of 16 may legally purchase alcohol in supermarkets or other shops, as well as in restaurants, bars and clubs. However, as this goes to press, France is moving to change the legal drinking age to 18, in line with most other European countries and in a bid to curb drinking among adolescents. A new law has been passed but is not yet being applied. Once enforced, vendors selling alcohol to individuals under 18 may be fined up to 7,500 Euros.
Contrary to vendors in the United States, counterparts in France and Paris rarely require customers purchasing alcohol to show IDs, instead relying on subjective judgement to assess whether a customer is old enough. Parents traveling with children or teens should be aware that in France, where alcohol consumption is not as stigmatized, it is still relatively easy for younger customers to procure alcoholic beverages.