On Licence

An On Licence authorises the holder of the licence to sell and supply alcohol to any person present on the premises, for consumption on the premises.

Under the new Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 there are new criteria that your business must meet to be issued a new or renewed On Licence. These include the suitability of the applicant, the hours proposed, the design and layout of the premises, and whether the amenity and good order of the locality will be affected by the business. The On Licence Application Form details the information that needs to be provided as part of the application.

There are also new rules around maximum trading hours, host responsibilities and the advertising and promotion of alcohol.

Read more information on changes for the alcohol industry on the Ministry of Justice Website.

Certificate of Compliance – Building and Planning

Every new application for an On Licence must have a certificate from the Council to show that the proposed use of the premises meets the requirements of the Resource Management Act 1991 and of the building code.

The Certificate of Compliance must be obtained before you lodge your On Licence application. Once all the correct information is provided it generally takes 15 working days to process and there is a fee.

Certificate of Compliance Application Form

Endorsed On Licences

There are two categories of Endorsed On Licences:

BYO Endorsed On Licence

This allows the consumption of alcohol brought by a customer, who is at that premise for the purpose of dining. A BYO licence does not authorise the licence holder to sell and supply alcohol to patrons.

Caterers Endorsed On Licence

This allows a person conducting the business of a caterer to deliver alcohol from the premises described in their licence and to sell it on any other premises for consumption on those premises attending any reception, function, or other social gathering promoted by any person other than the holder of the licence.

Licence Renewals

A licence is normally renewed for three years.

You must apply to renew a licence at least 20 working days* before the date on which the current licence expires. If you apply to renew a licence less than 20 working days before the expiry date the application may be refused by the District Licensing Committee. If you apply after the expiry date of the current licence it will be treated as a new licence application and can only be granted for one year.

*Working days do not include weekends, public holidays or the period 20 December to 15 January inclusive.

Temporary Authority

If you are seeking a licence for a premises that has previously been licensed and that licence is still current then you may be able to obtain a Temporary Authority. The Temporary Authority enables the premises to lawfully operate while you obtain a licence, and to sell and supply liquor under the same terms and conditions as the current licence.

Manager’s Certificate    

At all times that alcohol is being sold or supplied to the public through an On Licence, there must be a duty manager who holds a Manager's Certificate present. It is the duty manager's responsibility to ensure that the regulations of the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 are being upheld. Details of current or proposed manager/s that hold a Manager’s Certificate must be supplied with your application.

Public Notice

See a list of public notices for licence applications.

Once your application has been accepted, you must attach a notice to the outside of the premises within 10 working days after filing the application, in a conspicuous place on or adjacent to the site to which the application relates. the notice must remain on  display for at least 10 days.

Public notice template (display at premises) (37KB PDF)

Licence fees

Fees are calculated according to a new premises cost/risk rating that is determined by a combination of factors.

More information on Licence Fees.

More information

Information about the new Act on the Ministry of Justice website
Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012
Alcohol Ban Areas

Contact us


03 546 0200