Experiences Involving Alcohol in Puerto Rico
These information pages can help you get started in learning about some of the laws and registration requirements that may apply to your experiences on Airbnb. These pages include summaries of some of the rules that may apply to different sorts of activities, and contain links to government resources that you may find helpful.
Please understand that these information pages are not comprehensive, and are not legal advice. If you are unsure about how local laws or this information may apply to you or your Experience, we encourage you to check with official sources or seek legal advice.
Please note that we don’t update this information in real time, so you should confirm that the laws or procedures have not changed recently.*
I plan to include alcohol during my experience, is there anything I should be thinking about?
Yes. If you plan to include alcohol during your experience, we encourage you to please keep your safety, and that of your guests, front of mind.
Safe experiences do not involve providing alcohol to a Guest:
- Who is under 18
- Will be driving or operating any type of vehicle
- Looks or acts inebriated
- Has informed you that they are ill or has a drinking problem
- Until after any portion of an Experience involving physical activity (like yoga, swimming, hiking, biking) or activities that involve operating machinery is complete
- Featuring alcohol competitions (sweepstakes, pageants, tournaments or events) that distort the activity of tasting.
In addition, if you are hosting an experience with alcohol in a public venue or outdoor space, make sure alcohol is permitted to be consumed in that venue and consider whether a permit is required.
Do I need a license if I serve alcohol to my guests at my home, at a private venue or outdoors?
Yes, to sell, distribute and/or serve alcohol to your guests you will need to obtain a license under Puerto Rico law, issued by the “Secretario de Hacienda,” or Secretary of State. The licenses themselves are referred to as “Licencia de Rentas Internas,” and there are different categories of licenses depending on the specifics of your Experience. If a license is required, you will also have to prominently display posters issued by the Department of Health that warn of the harmful effects of alcohol on pregnant women, or women looking to become pregnant. Please consult with a local lawyer for more information.
Serving alcohol includes situations where:
- You sell alcohol to your Guest (by, for example, charging Guests for a glass of wine you serve yourself); or
- your Experience Price includes a charge for any alcohol you serve yourself.
- Serving homemade or home-brewed alcohol also triggers a number of issues. First, either buying or selling such alcohol may trigger tax liability (alcohol imported or manufactured in Puerto Rico is subject to a one-time tax, which varies depending on the type of alcohol). Second, Puerto Rican federal law prohibits the use of “beer concentrate,” “reconstituted beer,” and “denatured alcohol,” all of which may not be used in home-made alcohol processes. Please consult with a local lawyer or tax professional for more information.
Puerto Rico’s Law allows alcohol to be served at private, invitation-only events if you are not selling alcohol to your Guests. This means you may not need a license to serve alcohol to your Guests at a party that meets all of these requirements:
- You don’t charge the alcohol you serve (this means your Experience price cannot include the cost of any alcohol you serve to your guests) and/or you invite your Guests to bring their own alcohol; and
- f your Listing notes that alcohol will be served by you as part of your Experience, you clearly mention that this alcohol will be provided “at no charge;” and
- our party is pre-booked by Guests and you don’t let in people who are not invited or pre-booked.
Generally speaking, this is a tricky area and we encourage you to speak to a lawyer to make sure you are correctly interpreting these provisions and are following your local laws.
What if my experience takes place at a bar?
You would be unlikely to run afoul of regulations if you take your Guests to your favorite local bars or restaurants that are licensed under Puerto Rico’s law, since bars and restaurants should all have a license. If your Experience takes place at a bar, please verify that your Guests are over 18 years old and that the bar your Experience will be taking place in has the proper documentation.
What if my Experience is BYO, and I want to allow guests to bring their own alcohol?
If your experience is in your private home or other private location and it is not open to the general public, then hosting a BYO experience does not appear to require a license under Puerto Rico’s Law. You must make sure all Guests within the Experience are over 18 years old.
I brew my own beer or produce my own wine. What do I need to keep in mind?
Generally, all alcohol manufactured or imported in and into Puerto Rico is subject to a one-time tax, the rate of which will depend on the type of alcohol manufactured or imported. These tax-related regulations may apply where you decide to sell or offer home-made alcohol products. Puerto Rican federal law prohibits the use of “beer concentrate,” “reconstituted beer,” and “denatured alcohol,” all of which may not be used in home-made alcohol processes. Please consult with a local lawyer or tax professional for more information.
*Airbnb is not responsible for the reliability or correctness of the information contained in any links to third party sites (including any links to legislation and regulations).
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