I am traveling to Jamaica where the drinking age is 18. I am 20 and I plan on drinking. If I show my American driver's license will I be given a drink or will I be turned down?

2 Answers 2


You can use your passport. It is a document which is recognized internationally. Try your license first, though.

You can also get an international driver's license. In the US, for example, you can get one for a fee at your local AAA office. This is a photo document, recognized many countries (you must present it along with your regular driver license). Additional: as long as you are not intoxicated when you land back in the US, you are fine.

  • 3
    Or to put it another way, the potential issue with your US driver's licence is that it's not an accepted document in Jamaica, full stop, rather than that it's accepted but it says you're of an age which would be insufficient for the purchase of alcohol in the jurisdiction which issued it.
    – MadHatter
    Commented Feb 1, 2020 at 8:02
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    @MadHatter Why would a Jamaican bartender care what US law says? If someone can prove they're over eighteen in my bar (New Zealand) they'll get served, no problem, regardless of their nationality.
    – user105640
    Commented Feb 1, 2020 at 8:12
  • Especially if it's a resort hotel bar, and the patron looks on the younger side, the staff have to be more careful. So better to bring it and not need it, than to need it and not have it, is my reasoning. But you don't want to get tipsy and misplace your passport, so that's why I mentioned the IDP. Can leave the passport in your room.
    – Z Kubota
    Commented Feb 1, 2020 at 10:06
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    I think it very unlikely you will encounter a place where a US drivers license isn't accepted but an International License is. International licenses are rarities, and most barkeeps will have seen more US licenses. Commented Feb 1, 2020 at 20:33
  • There is no such thing as an "international driver's license". There is an "international driver's permit", but the odds of this being accepted as proof of age anywhere in the world is low (if only because they have very poor security features around the photo compared to any government-issued ID, plus the fact it explicitly states it's only valid when presented with the original drivers license)
    – Doc
    Commented Feb 2, 2020 at 0:25

Jamaica is not a strict enforcer of drinking laws, so you may not even be asked for ID if you don't look obviously much younger than 18. If they do ask for ID it is up to the establishment what they accept.

Your US drivers license is likely to be accepted (there are no rules about not accepting foreign documents like there sometimes are in the US). If your US license isn't accepted then your passport is almost certain to be.

And just in case you were asking, identifying yourself as American will not prevent you from drinking at age 18.

  • 1
    I'd be very surprised if OPs documents are verified in Jamaica even if they do look under 18...
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Feb 1, 2020 at 20:38

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