Gov. Greg Abbott: Alcohol to-go sales in Texas to continue beyond May 1, could last 'forever'

Although Texas restaurants will begin to open May 1, to-go alcohol sales will be allowed to continue, according to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. (Courtesy Pexels)
Although Texas restaurants will begin to open May 1, to-go alcohol sales will be allowed to continue, according to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. (Courtesy Pexels)

Although Texas restaurants will begin to open May 1, to-go alcohol sales will be allowed to continue, according to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. (Courtesy Pexels)

As some Texas restaurants and businesses prepare to reopen with limited occupancy starting May 1, alcohol to-go sales will be allowed to continue, according to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission and Gov. Greg Abbott.

“From what I hear from Texans, we may just let this keep on going forever,” Abbott said in an April 28 tweet.




Gov. Abbott announced April 27 that retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters and malls across the state will be permitted to operate at 25% capacity starting May 1. In response, the TABC has issued updated guidelines regarding how businesses who sell alcoholic beverages should plan to reopen.

These guidelines allow for restaurants to continue to use expanded to-go and delivery sales options, which established the practice of to-go alcoholic beverage sales.


Here are other key guidelines from the TABC.


  • Dine-in restaurants can reopen May 1 at 25% capacity if alcohol sales account for less than 51% of gross revenue.

  • Tap rooms and tasting rooms can reopen at 25% capacity starting May 1 for dine-in services if they operate a restaurant with permanent food service, and alcohol sales account for less than 51% of gross revenue. These businesses can also reopen May 1 for quick tastings and to sell beverages to be consumed off-site.

  • Bars are not allowed to open May 1 but may be included in the next phase of reopening in mid-May.


The most up-to-date guidelines can be found on the TABC website.

“TABC staff is reviewing the governor's report and working with his office to seek further guidance,” the TABC website reads. “We will continue updating this page with directives that will help businesses reopen safely under Gov. Abbott's new executive order.”

By Claire Shoop
Claire joined Community Impact Newspaper in September 2019 as the reporter for the Sugar Land/Missouri City edition. She graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in May 2019 where she studied journalism, government and Arabic. While in school, Claire was a fellow for The Texas Tribune, worked for the student newspaper, The Daily Texan, and spent a semester in Washington, D.C. She enjoys playing cards with her family and listening to the Boss, Bruce Springsteen.


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