What to know about drugs in Portugal

I introduce this post showing you a video of The Economist. This video asks random people this question: “Which country was the first to decriminalize all drugs?”

Yes, welcome to the first country that has decriminalized all drugs in 2001. No, not The Netherlands, us. However, please note that it’s still illegal to buy drugs on the streets, and there are no “shops” that sell them either.


Among Portuguese adults, there are 3 drug overdose deaths for every 1.000.000 citizens. That’s a surprising number, considering other European countries. In 2001 there were a lot of government officials who were against the rule, stating that drug use would go through the roof, but they were wrong.

You may not be arrested if you got caught with drugs for your personal use, but maybe you will need to go to a rehab clinic in Portugal, where they help you get out of drug use. But what’s that “personal use”? Personal use is the quantity you need for yourself, like 1 gram of heroin, ecstasy or amphetamines, 2 grams of cocaine or 25 grams of weed. These quantities might change, so please make sure you know the right limits.

I hope that this post helped you live a better Erasmus experience in Portugal.

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