Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration

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Pub Crawl Applications and Requirements

Pub crawls are defined in the District as a group of establishments within walking distance that participate in the promotion of an event featuring the sale and service of alcohol during a specified time period. Pub crawl promoters and organizers are required to comply with all regulations and to complete the following in order to hold a pub crawl event in the District, if it includes more than 200 participants: 

1. Apply for a pub crawl license and pay a licensing fee of $500 at least 60 days prior to an initial pub crawl event.
2. Submit a pub crawl event form along with all required documentation for each pub crawl to be held in the District. Each event is subject to Board approval.
3. Submit a litter removal plan that is subject to the approval of the District Department of Public Works.

Pub crawls are not permitted to be held in the District on July 4, October 31, and December 31.

Apply for an Annual Pub Crawl License 

A pub crawl license is valid for three calendar years from the year in which it is issued. The annual fee for the license is $500. At least 60 days prior to an initial pub crawl event, complete and submit a Pub Crawl License Application along with a District Police Clearance and Clean Hands Certificate to ABRA. If an applicant resides outside of the District, a Police Clearance from the local jurisdiction in which the applicant resides is also required. A pub crawl license application must be submitted to ABRA in person at 2000 14th Street, NW, Suite 400 South, 4th Floor, Washington DC 20009.

Pub Crawl Event Application Requirements

Licensed promoters and organizers are required to complete the following at least 60 days prior to each pub crawl event to be held in the District:

1. Provide ABRA, MPD and the District Fire and Emergency Medical Services (DCFEMS) with a completed Pub Crawl Event Form and attach the:

  • Operational plan and security plans that include at minimum:
    • Name(s) and number(s) of security personnel contracted for the event;
    • Plans for controlling underage drinking; and
    • Method to be used for checking participants’ identifications.
  • Locations of the designated registration areas.
  • Plans for litter prevention, control, and removal that meets all of the requirements.

2. File a litter removal plan (guidelines) at least 60 days prior to each pub crawl event with the District Department of Public Works (DPW). The litter plan is subject to DPW approval in 10 days.

3. File a signed litter removal plan with the waste management company along with payment for services with ABRA and DPW within three days following a pub crawl event.

A pub crawl event form, operational plan, security plan and litter removal plan and all other required event documents may be submitted to ABRA by email or in person:

  • ABRA Email
  • 2000 14th Street, NW, Suite 400 South, 4th Floor, Washington DC 20009

Documents may be provided to all other applicable agencies at the following contacts:

Summary of Pub Crawl Rules 

Pub crawl organizers and promoters are also required to:

  • Post the approved operational and security plans at all designated registration areas.
  • Post the approved pub crawl license at each participating establishment.
  • Provide literature explaining responsible drinking practices at any designated registration area.
  • Be present at the pub crawl event to oversee and manage all activities of the event.
  • Refrain from purchasing or consuming any alcoholic beverages.
  • Include the following in any advertisement or promotional materials:
    • State that, "You must be 21 or older to participate";
    • Promote the use of public transportation; and
    • Include the plan for a designated driver program for the event.

In addition, establishments are prohibited from participating in more than one pub crawl event at a time or participating in events not approved by the Board. Complete rules can be reviewed online.

Pub Crawl Forms

Additional Resources