French Law has not allowed for the consumption of alcohol at sports venues since the 90s, and on Tuesday, a resolution was reached about whether or not spectators for the 2024 Olympics, hosted in Paris, should be allowed to consume alcohol. The Olympic organizing committee decided that because the amount of spectators is speculated to be at an all-time high with over 700 competitive sessions, the sale of alcohol would be unnecessary. That is unless you are seated in the VIP section. Spectators in VIP areas, since they fall under a loophole in the law that allows for the sale of alcohol in catered areas, will be served and allowed to consume alcoholic beverages.
By Simon Kent; June 28, 2023
Alcohol consumption at the 2024 Paris Olympics will be restricted to special VIP areas only, a report Tuesday confirmed, meaning the elites can happily quaff Champagne while those in the cheap seats will be forced to look on and sip water.
Thanks to an edict called Elvin’s Law which began in 1991, alcohol sales have long been banned to the general public in France’s sports stadiums.
Exceptions are allowed, but a spokesperson for the Organizing Committees for the Olympic Games told Reuters they didn’t seek one, citing the sheer number of events across two-plus weeks.
“Paris 2024 will be organizing more than 700 competition sessions over 15 days of competition,” the spokesperson said.
Fans in VIP sections, however, will be allowed to imbibe as much and as often as they please.
They won’t be subject to the restrictions, thanks to a loophole that permits alcohol distribution in specially catered hospitality areas.
“It is the strict application of French law that allows catering services that include the provision of alcohol to operate in hospitality areas as they are governed by a separate law on catering,” the spokesperson told the outlet.
Le Parisien reports VIPs in some sections will be greeted with a champagne service on arrival and provided access to bars serving wine and beer for the duration.
Beer and wine was available at the London 2012 Olympics and at Rio 2016 but at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Games, which were held in 2021 and went ahead with no spectators, alcohol sales were prohibited.
While Olympics fans next year will be forced to look on in envy rugby followers can feel much more satisfied.
Organizers of the 2023 Rugby World Cup later this year in France have already negotiated an exemption for the event which means there will be ample amounts of all alcoholic drinking choices inside the grounds for rugby fans around the country.