Throughout history, alcohol and marijuana have been subject to many different laws and legislation. From the prohibition in 1920’s USA to the Dutch ‘Gedoogbeleid’ on weed, the two substances have been discussed, argued about, fought for and against, illegalized and legalized, all within the last decade. Throw the more recent and ever-changing gaming-laws in the mix and finish off with some country-specific laws and you’ve got yourself a pretty confusing cocktail.

To clear things up and let you know where countries stand on the abovementioned substances, we’ll have a look at some of the current European laws.


We all know drinking alcohol is not the best for our bodies. It can be harmful for our liver, intestines, kidneys, but when underaged it’s also particularly bad for your brain development. That’s why there’s a legal drinking age in many countries.

These legal drinking ages give us a little insight into the regulations regarding alcohol use in some of these countries. But there are several ways countries aim to regulate the mis-use of alcoholic substances. Below, you’ll also find some interesting facts regarding local laws.

Check out the map below to see the legislations for alcohol and marijuana use in different European countries. The more you know!


This map shows the legal age of all current european countries
  16+ 17+ 18+ 20+


In Germany the age limit drops to 14 when the minor is guided by a parent or legal guardian
In Luxembourgh there is no obligation to ask for or show a legal document stating your age
In Italy there is no legal minimum age for drinking, but most regions take 16+ as a minimum to buy alcoholic beverages of 10% and up.


it takes 6 MINUTES for the brain to react on alcohol

48% of people aged over 15, claim to have never drank alcohol

1 IN 5 top 100 country music songs refer to alcohol



Marijuana is a whole other game. In many countries there is a ban on the selling, using and buying of marijuana. Amsterdam is famous for its weed-tourism, but did you know, legislatively, it’s not actually legal to smoke weed in the Netherlands?
There are three important terms to remember when talking about the legislations and regulations of weed/marijuana
Is when countries decide it is still a criminal offence, but is no longer punished.
Is when countries classify an offence from being criminal to being non-criminal. It remains an offence and may be punished by police. But you won’t go to court for it
Is when countries move supply of marijuana from being prohibited to being permitted.


This map shows where it is (il)legal to sell, buy or use marijuana
which is nowhere
but not legal
but decriminalized
and punishable


The Netherlands
The Netherlands is famous for its “Gedoogbeleid” or toleration policy. Weed is not really legal, but it’s tolerated and not punishable for possession up until 5 grams.
Spain condones personal growing and use, but selling or trading marijuana is illegal.


according to U.N 3.8% of the world population use marijuana. That are 158.8 million people

a recent atmospheric study showed marijuana was found 100% of the time in the air in Italy

about 10% of the people who smoke marijuana become addicted



Although regulations revolving gaming are relatively new and diverse throughout Europe, certain laws and regulations do apply.
Just as with other substances, there are age restrictions on buying games.
In Europe, these restrictions are set by Pan European Game Information standard (PEGI).
Throughout Europe, certain aspects of popular games have been the subject of debate. Most well-known and recent developments include restrictions on gambling, loot boxes and other in-game spending options.
In Belgium, for example, Fifa 21 does no longer support buying FIFA Points with money. The popular football game might also have to bow for further restrictions depending on gambling laws. Here, the game-modus Ultimate Team is being criticized for motivating players to spend money on player packages. Gambling on a desired result coming from those packages.


This map shows the percentage of people, age 12 - 26,  that says they game every day in the following Dutch, Belgium and German regions
Of which
44% male
17% female
remainder filed other/none


8.4% of youngsters throughout the world suffers from a game addiction

close to 85% of participants (almost) never skip homework to play a video game

almost 82% of the participants says the preffer social activities to gaming

Choose your region..