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Auckland Council

1. Check if you need an alcohol special licence for your event

When you need an alcohol special licence

You need an alcohol special licence if you are:

  • selling alcohol at an event
  • charging an entry fee or collecting donations where alcohol is being supplied for free.

Examples include:

  • wine tastings
  • private functions (birthdays, weddings)
  • farmers' markets
  • festivals
  • concerts
  • sporting events
  • bus trips
  • ticketed events
  • functions in public venue where public access is not restricted.

Special licence for events spanning more than one day

You can get a special licence for an event that takes place over several days, as long as the event is the same in size, form and substance each day, and is all related.

This includes:

  • an event that takes place over several consecutive days, like a music festival or food and wine show
  • an event that is spread out over time with gaps in between, like a sports tournament that takes place over four consecutive Saturdays.

If you have a number of events that are unrelated to each other, or different in size, form and substance, you will need to make individual applications for a special licence for each event - i.e. one application form per event.

When you don't need an alcohol special licence

You do not need a special licence when you are supplying alcohol or guests are bringing their own alcohol to a private event, as long as it is not open to the public.

This only applies to a private event where a family occasion is celebrated in a hired venue and guests bring their own alcohol or the host supplies it for free.

We can't issue a licence for BYO events.