Posted on: May 6, 2022

How to Become Bartender in Colorado

Generally, servers in Colorado are not required by law to get an alcohol server license.

The following situations require responsible alcohol server training in Colorado.

  • Working at a liquor store that organizes alcohol tastings
  • Working in an establishment that previously received an alcohol violation

Alcohol server training is not generally a Colorado requirement. However, many establishments require their alcohol servers have updated alcohol handling certification.

Employers and restaurant owners may require employees to take certified training through the “Responsible Vendors” program.

What is the Responsible Vendors Program?

The Responsible Vendor Program is a voluntary, self-monitoring Colorado program designed to aid the adoption and enforcement of best practices regarding responsible alcohol sales.

Responsible Vendor training must occur in a “Classroom Setting” or a “Live Streaming” setting where the student and instructor have live interaction.

Tips is a certified Responsible Vendor alcohol server trainer.

What Are the Colorado Alcohol Laws?

Do you want to know how old you have to be to bartend in Colorado? The following chart shows Colorado bartending laws and describes the Colorado bartending license rules.

Age to Consume 21
Age to Pour 18, must be supervised by someone who is 21+.
Age to Sell 18 to sell or contribute to a sale at grocery stores or convenience stores. Must be at least 21 to sell in a liquor store.
Age to Serve 18, if supervised by someone who is 21+.
Serving Note Tavern employees must be at least 21 unless the tavern regularly serves full meals.
DUI/DWI Limit .08; Driving while impaired, .05. Boating, .08
DUI/DWI Under Age Limit .02
Maximum Alcohol per Drink Not Regulated
Number of Drinks at One Time There is no limit on the number of drinks one person can be served. A visibly intoxicated person may not be served.
Dram Shop Liability Laws Yes
Social Host Liability Laws Yes
Server Training Required by State Voluntary except in liquor stores that host tastings.
ID Confiscation Allowed Yes. Establishments in Colorado can confiscate false IDs. Contact the Colorado Liquor Enforcement Division or local government for the appropriate statutes and information.
Recommended Age for Carding None

Why Get Alcohol Training in Colorado?

Many employers require their employees to participate in the Responsible Vendor Program and complete an alcohol server training course.

Due to changes in the Colorado Liquor Code, as of July 1, 2016, all Liquor Licensed Drug Store employees engaged in the sale of alcohol must earn and maintain certification for Responsible Alcohol Beverage Vendor.

This incentivizes licensees to provide training for servers. Because server training is a proven method to reduce alcohol violations, Colorado law gives reduced penalties for the first violation of a sale to a minor for licensees who completed a Responsible Alcohol Vendor program.”

Even when server training is not required by law, employers may require that their employees take a training course to understand the penalties and risks of severing alcohol to minors or intoxicated patrons.

Getting certified as a liquor-serving employee means that you receive protection in the event of an alcohol-involved incident and become more hirable by quality employers.

According to this data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1,702 people were killed in crashes involving a drunk driver in Colorado between 2003 to 2012.  Anyone who sells alcohol is in a position to make a positive change by making decisions that help reduce those numbers

How Do I Get My Alcohol Server Training?

TIPS is a certified vendor of Alcohol Server Training. Employers value employees who go through the effort to get their Alcohol Server License.

Click here to enroll in Tips Alcohol Server Training.