All the Places Where Happy Hour Is Illegal in the U.S. [MAP]

Oh, happy hour. When a burger and a beer only costs $12 in an expensive place like Manhattan, one can’t help but feel like they’re getting away with something. It’s a beautiful thing.

What began as a booze-less social hour for the U.S. Navy in 1914 has evolved into a staple of American drinking and dining culture. It was around the ‘70s when it truly became synonymous with $2 Margaritas and half-priced apps. Ever since, it’s been a sure-fire way to curb the dinner rush, bring in new customers, and keep them coming back. Plus, a good chunk of the working world ends their day around 5 or 6 o’clock: that’s a little early for dinner, but not too early to grab a cheap pint and crush a plate of oysters.

But with discounted drinks and a limited window of time to drink them, happy hour can easily fill a bar with drunk patrons. That’s why in 1984, Massachusetts infamously became the first state to ban happy hour.

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Over the years, a number of other states have followed suit to keep overconsumption at bay. Many states have put limits on when exactly happy hour can take place, as well as how inexpensive the deals can be. For example, in 2022, New York State liquor laws put the kibosh on a West Village bar’s 25-cent Martini special. The more risk-averse states out there seem to have good intentions at heart, but that doesn’t take away from the hard truth: Happy hour is awesome.

To help make sense of the many legal twists and turns, we built a map to show which states permit happy hour, which ones don’t, and which ones allow it with some caveats.

All the Places Where Happy Hour Is Illegal in the U.S. [MAP]

States with No Happy Hour Restrictions

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming
  • Washington D.C.

States with Restrictions on Duration or Time of Day

  • Illinois
  • Alabama
  • Louisiana
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Texas
  • Virginia

States with Limits on Price Reductions and All-You-Can-Drink Specials

  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Kansas
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Washington
  • Connecticut
  • Hawaii
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Nebraska
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • Virginia

States Where Happy Hour Is Illegal

  • Alaska
  • Indiana
  • Massachusetts
  • North Carolina
  • Oklahoma
  • Rhode Island
  • Utah
  • Vermont

*Image retrieved from Charlie Harris via