In a recent circular from The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT – Abu Dhabi), it stated: "Residents and tourists will be permitted to buy and possess alcohol from licensed retail shops and are allowed to drink within tourism and hotel establishments, clubs and independent outlets."Both residents and tourists will no longer need an alcohol license. However, the Department still maintained the rules that: “consumers must be 21 years of age, and the purchase should be for personal consumption only and not for storage or resale to others.”
Previously, Abu Dhabi residents and tourists required a license to purchase, transport or consume alcohol, even in their homes. Alcohol licenses are still legally required in the neighbouring emirate of Dubai.