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New alcohol law takes effect in Cancun, Riviera Maya

Cancun, Riviera Maya, Q.R. — The Director of Inspection of Benito Juárez says that the new alcohol law for the state will be in effect February 10 and affect the times for the sale of alcohol.

Alberto Covarrubias Cortés, director of Fiscalización de Benito Juárez explained that “The law enters into force 31 days after being published in the Diario Oficial de la Federación, which means it goes into effect February 10.”

He says that although some businesses have already began to apply the new law, the change in hours for the sale of alcohol officially takes effect Sunday.

The new Ley de Alcoholes states that packaged alcohol cannot be sold past 11:00 p.m., however, bars that wish to sell alcohol after that time can apply for a special permit that will allow alcohol sales until 3:00 a.m.

He explained that “On February 10, the law comes into force and what the law says is that the establishments (that sell alcohol) with closed containers, which are the establishments to take away, mini-supermarket, convenience stores, self-service, etc., the hours will be restricted at 11:00 p.m.

“In the case of restaurants, bars, nightclubs and all that type of business, the provision is that the schedule also takes effect at 11:00 p.m.”

He added that “for the hotel zones, the schedules can run from Monday to Sunday until 3:00 a.m. with an extended permit, but for the center, sales end at 11:00 p.m.”

“With this ruling, hotel zone establishments will go to the Secretary of Finance and Planning of the state who will give them an agreement with which we can grant the extended schedule,” he said adding that more than 600 businesses have already applied to be able to sell alcohol until 3:00 a.m.

The new Ley de Alcoholes falls under Article 25 BIS and states: The sale of alcohol for wineries, liquor stores, sub-agencies, mini supers, self-service stores and convenience stores can only sell from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Monday to Saturday and on Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The new law will also apply to establishments located in tourist areas.

Restaurants, bars and open establishments that offer alcoholic beverages, the schedule will be from 11:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. Monday to Saturday. On Sundays it will be 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Establishments in the tourist zones may request a sales schedule for an extended sale permit from Monday to Sunday that, if granted, will allow them to sell alcohol from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 a.m.

In case of non-compliance, authorities will have the power to confiscate and close businesses.

The move to change the times of the sale of alcohol was made by both municipal and state authorities in an attempt to help curb crime rates around the state.

The new Ley de Alcoholes is applied around the entire state of Quintana Roo, but aimed primarily at the north zones.