Changing a liquor or wine licence

Queensland liquor licensees can apply for approval to change their liquor licence if their business needs change.

You might want to change your licence:

  • to extend your trading hours
  • when renovating your licensed premises.

To permanently change another condition of your liquor licence—e.g. change the permitted noise level—apply for a permanent variation of your licence.

Extending liquor licence trading hours

Your approved trading hours for serving or supplying alcohol are included on your liquor licence.

For most Queensland licensees, ordinary trading hours are from 10am to midnight. Some licensees' trading hours can be longer—for example, some restaurants and artisan producers can trade until 1am, many venues in safe night precincts can trade until 3am and certain commercial special facilities like casinos or airports can trade 24-hours a day.

Most Queensland liquor licensees can:

All licensees (except community–other licensees) can apply to extend their trading hours before 10am.

You can apply for temporary or permanent extensions (for consumption on the premises only) for the following times:

  • from 7 to 9am at lawn bowls clubs, golf clubs or any community clubs that can demonstrate a need, or other licensees for bona fide functions
  • from 9 to 10am for any licensee (except community–other licensees) who can demonstrate a need.

Temporary permits extending trading hours before 10am will only be issued for 4 dates in any 1-year period.

Read Guideline 46: Demonstrated community need for pre-10am trading for more information.

Temporary extensions

A temporary extension to trade between midnight and 5am is only available when someone other than the licensee, owner or occupier (i.e. an independent third party) wants to celebrate a special occasion at the licensed premises. The approval will only cover the special occasion and a reasonable time before and after it.

Read Guideline 68: Late-night extended hours permit for more information on:

  • the types of special events that don't require evidence to be submitted with your application
  • what's considered a reasonable time before or after the special occasion.

You don't need to submit evidence of the request having been made by an independent third party if the special occasion benefits your customers.

A temporary extension is only available for a maximum of 6 dates in a calendar year (inclusive of New Year's Eve and Australia Day) and can be used on only 1 day per calendar month.

If the special occasion will run over 2 or more consecutive days in a calendar month, you can still apply for a permit to cover it. The consecutive dates must be for the same special occasion. If 2 dates are approved, this will count as 2 of your possible 6 annual extended trading hours permits.

For new licensees, the number of available permits in a calendar year is reduced on a pro-rata basis depending on when your new licence is approved. For example, if your new licence was approved on 20 April, there'd be 8 months left in that calendar year, so you could apply for up to 4 permits before 31 December that year.

Permanent extensions

Certain licensees can apply for the following permanent extensions to trade after midnight:

  • Restaurants and cafés can apply to extend their trading hours up to 1am.
  • Most licensees (except community–other licences) can apply to extend their trading hours up to 2am.
  • Licensees in safe night precinct venues can apply to extend their trading hours up to 3am.
  • Commercial special facility licensees in airports or casinos only can apply to extend their trading hours up to 5am.

Trading hours for the sale of takeaway liquor from hotels (including bottle shops), clubs and certain commercial special facilities are ordinarily from 10am to 10pm (unless they were approved before 1 December 2010, in which case they end at midnight).

Licensees can apply to permanently extend takeaway liquor sales from 9 to 10am.

Liquor licensees (except community-other licensees) can apply for extended trading hours on weekends. The options for extended trading hours on weekends are:

  • before 10am on Saturday and Sunday
  • midnight to 1am, 2am or 3am Friday night/Saturday morning and Saturday night/Sunday morning.

The annual fees payable for extended trading are less for weekend-only trade.

How to apply

To temporarily extend your trading hours, submit an application for a one-off extended trading hours permit.

You must submit your application to the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (OLGR) at least 21 days before the occasion or event. Applications lodged less than 21 days before won't be processed. This a requirement under section 5 of the Liquor Regulation 2002.

To permanently extend your trading hours, submit an application for extended trading hours approval.

If your application is approved, the approval will be endorsed on your licence. You'll need to pay additional annual fees within 28 days of your approval and then by 31 July each year.

Supplying liquor after approved hours

You can make a request to OLGR to have an area of your licensed premises designated for gratuitous supply of liquor after approved trading hours, for a particular day or event.

Read Guideline 31: Gratuitous supply of liquor to find out more.

Renovating or resizing your premises

If you're planning to alter your premises without changing the licensed area description (e.g. remove a wall or lengthen a bar), submit an application to alter, rebuild or change the premises to change your licence.

If you plan to permanently increase or decrease the licensed area, and/or alter or rebuild it in a way that will affect the licensed area description (e.g. remove a detached bottle shop, which you no longer use, or add a footpath dining area), submit an application to permanently change the licensed area to change your licence.

For more information, read:

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