Bartending License Requirements for North Dakota

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In North Dakota there are no state regulations in place that require a server or bartender to be licensed in order to sell alcohol.

With that being said, there are several cities and counties in North Dakota that have implemented requirements for bartender training and licensing. They are the following:

  • Dickinson
  • Fargo
  • Grand Forks
  • Watford
  • West Fargo
  • Glyndon
  • Williston

Other North Dakota cities and counties continue to require and remove requirements of bartending licensing consistently, so it is best to contact your local city clerk’s office to confirm.

Note: The team at Bartending License Help has called and emailed multiple cities in North Dakota to confirm bartending license requirements. While many cities do require licensing according to their city codes, it is clear that city employees are very unaware of requirements. Therefore, while the information provided here is technically correct, we highly advise speaking to your employer about what they require.

It is also important to keep in mind some employers will require bartenders to complete such courses regardless of state or city laws. To receive an all-encompassing seller/service license, we suggest this quick and cheap course from Serving Alcohol.


Sellers and servers of alcohol in Dickinson, North Dakota are required to complete an approved server training course in order to work as a bartender.

Bartenders are required to pass the test with a score of at least 72% within 90 days of starting their job. The server training card is required to be renewed every three years.

Fargo, Moorhead, West Fargo and Glyndon

Server training is required in the cities of Fargo, Moorhead, West Fargo and Glyndon in order to sell or serve alcohol. The reason why we group these four cities together is because training is done at the same place for all four.

To take the required server training it will be done through the North Dakota Safety Council (NDSC). The online-only course costs $20 and is valid for three years.

The training must be taken before starting your job and is required for anyone involved in the service of alcoholic beverages (managers, servers, security guards, bartenders, and door attendants).


In order to sell or serve alcohol in Williston, North Dakota, you are required to take Responsible Beverage Server Training as provided by the Williston police department within 90 days of starting your job. Certifications are valid for three years.

A calendar of upcoming training classes can be found here.

Grand Forks

All sellers or servers of alcohol in Grand Forks, North Dakota are required to successfully complete server training that is approved by the Grand Forks Police Department. A certificate of training must be obtained within 60 days of starting a job and is valid for three years. Training providers may be found here.


Employees and managers in Watford, North Dakota are required to take server training that has been approved by the Watford City Police Chief or the City Administrator. A server training certificate must be obtained within six months of starting a job and is valid for three years at which point it must be renewed.

Minimum Age To Serve Alcoholic Beverages In North Dakota

According to the state law in North Dakota, individuals must be 21 years old in order to bartend (mix drinks).

There is a state exception for 18-20 year olds to “serve and collect money for alcoholic beverages” as long as a manager or supervisor is on duty who is of legal drinking age. This is important because for 18-20 year olds in North Dakota, you may serve alcohol, but you are not legally allowed to mix or dispense alcohol.

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