Tag Archives: austria

Vinmonopolet…aka one of the worst things about Norway

I’ve resisted posting about one of my least favorite things about living in Norway for a long time.  I figured that, even if I were initially skeptical, I would give the system a chance and see if it grew on me.  It hasn’t.

The basics:

  • Vinmonopolet (“The Wine Monopoly”) is owned by the government.
  • It is a non-profit enterprise.
  • Wine and liquor can only be sold in Vinmonopolet.
  • “Strong” beer can also only be sold in Vinmonopolet. 
    • What’s a strong beer?  Anything over 4.7%.  Yes, seriously.
  • “Weak” beer is the only alcoholic beverage that can be sold in other stores.
  • There are only 239 stores in all of Norway and only 24 in Oslo.

In short, the stores are horribly inconvenient, always have a long line, close at ridiculous hours, and have a terrible selection. 

For the government’s defense, click below.

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The environment? Norwegians love it!

This is a completely unneccessary picture of a fjordDon’t believe me?  According to some smart guys with PhD’s who probably did a lot of research on the matter, Norway ranks #3 in a list of the world’s “greenest, most livable places.”  Take that, Sweden!

The top country without a Nordic Cross flag is Austria at #5. 

In the city rankings, Oslo checked in at #2 (behind Stockholm).