New Mexico Bartending License Requirements

  • By: BT Staff
  • Date: January 20, 2024
  • Time to read: 5 min.

Are you interested in becoming a bartender in the Land of Enchantment? Before you start shaking up cocktails and pouring drinks, it’s important to understand the legal requirements for bartenders in New Mexico.

Do You Need a Bartending License in New Mexico?

Yes, New Mexico’s Alcoholic Beverage Control requires all bartenders to obtain an Alcohol Server Permit to ensure they have the knowledge and skills to do this safely and responsibly.

What Is an Alcohol Server Permit in New Mexico?

An alcohol servers license assures employers and customers that the bartender is qualified to handle alcohol and has learned responsible beverage service. Furthermore, obtaining a bartending license can enhance your career opportunities and increase your earning potential in the hospitality industry.

How Do You Obtain a Bartending License in New Mexico?

To obtain an alcohol server license, there are several steps you need to follow. First, you must complete an approved alcohol server education program can be found on the ABC website. Both in-person and online classes are available.

How Long Does an Official New Mexico Alcohol Server Permit Last?

It’s important to note that your NM alcohol servers license must be renewed every three years from its issue date.

What Jobs Can I Get With My Alcohol Server Permit?

With a valid alcohol server permit, you can work in bars, restaurants, hotels, and other establishments that serve alcohol. As a licensed bartender or server, you may also have the opportunity to work at events such as weddings, parties, and concerts, where alcohol is being served.

Additionally, some establishments may require that bartenders or servers have specific certifications, such as a Certified Specialist of Wine or a Certified Beer Server. These certifications can provide additional career opportunities in the hospitality industry, including working in fine-dining restaurants, wine bars, or breweries. The Certified Beer Server is the first level to getting a Cicerone certification.

New Mexico Bartending FAQ

Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQ) that people often ask about becoming a bartender in New Mexico.

What Is an Alcohol Servers License, and Why Do I Need One in New Mexico?

An alcohol servers license is a legal requirement for anyone looking to serve alcoholic beverages in New Mexico. It ensures that bartenders have the necessary knowledge and skills to serve alcohol safely and responsibly, such as noticing signs of customer over-consumption.

How Do I Obtain a Bartending License in New Mexico?

To obtain an alcohol servers license in New Mexico, you must complete a state-approved alcohol server training program and submit an application to the New Mexico Alcohol and Gaming Division with the required fees and documentation.

What Is the New Mexico Alcohol Server Education Act?

In 1993, the Alcohol Server Education Act was passed in New Mexico. It requires all sellers or servers of alcohol to complete an approved program taught by approved schools and instructors. The Act aims to enhance professionalism, examine the effects of alcohol, recognize problem drinkers, and reduce drunk driving, physical damage, and alcohol-related birth defects.

What Are the Age Requirements for Obtaining a Bartending License in New Mexico?

You must be at least 21 to obtain a bartending license in New Mexico.

How Long Does It Take To Obtain a Bartending License in New Mexico?

The timeline for obtaining an alcohol servers license in New Mexico varies. Still, it can take several weeks for the Alcohol and Gaming Division to process your application and issue your license.

You should receive temporary server permits upon completing the training. It’s valid for 120 days while your server permit is processed.

If you need to check the license status, you can do a license search through the ABC website.

How Do You Replace Lost or Damaged Permits?

If your bartending license permit in New Mexico is lost, stolen, or damaged, you can request a replacement by contacting the New Mexico Alcohol and Gaming Division and filling out the Duplicate Server Permit Request Form.

You can submit the required form and documents to the ABC office by mail or in person. The form must include the following:

  • Copy of your driver’s license
  • Current/valid mailing address
  • $10.00 cashier’s check or money order. Note that cash payments are no longer accepted.

If you want to receive your server’s permit by mail, ensure your application has your current mailing address or contact ABC to update your information.

Can I Work as a Bartender in New Mexico Without a Bartending License?

No, it is illegal for anyone who serves alcohol not to have a proper permit.

What Is Make the Right Call in New Mexico Alcohol Server Training?

“Make the Right Call” is a part of the alcohol server training program in New Mexico that emphasizes the importance of responsible alcohol service. The program educates staff, including bartenders, on recognising an intoxicated person and preventing situations that could lead to alcohol-related harm, such as over-serving, underage drinking, and drunk driving.

How Much Do Bartenders Make on Average in New Mexico?

According to websites like Indeed and Intuit, the average base salary for a bartender in New Mexico is $15.41 or $26,000 per year as of 2023, according to Intuit Mint’s data based on tax returns. It depends on the schedule that you choose to work and how busy the bar is because most of your income comes from tips.


In conclusion, obtaining a server permit is essential for anyone looking to work as a bartender in New Mexico. It is a legal requirement that you have the knowledge and skills to serve alcohol safely and responsibly. Following the steps outlined in this blog post, you can obtain a bartending license and start your career as a licensed bartender in the Land of Enchantment. So, whether you’re looking to work in a bustling bar or an upscale restaurant, getting a bartending license is the first step towards success in the hospitality industry.

If you’re interested in bartending in other American states, we’ve written an article about bartending requirements across America here.