Effective date: 6 July 2016Last amended: August 2020
This policy is designed to provide information in regard to the subject matter covered, and with the understanding that the Director of Liquor Licensing is not passing legal opinion or interpretation or other professional advice. The information
is provided on the understanding that all persons undertake responsibility for assessing the relevance and accuracy of its contents.
This policy provides guidance as to the legislative and operational requirements associated with the sale, supply and consumption of liquor on commercial charter boats. It also provides guidance as to best practice principles that should be taken into
consideration when liquor is supplied or consumed on a charter boat.
Where the sale and supply of liquor takes place on a boat, the nature and purpose of the charter and the reason for which people are resorting to the vessel will determine whether or not a liquor licence is required.
Even if a licence is not required, the vessel may be deemed a ‘regulated premises’ and offence provisions under the Act apply to the supply, consumption and possession of liquor in regard to juveniles and drunk persons on the charter boat.
Whether the vessel requires a liquor licence or is simply deemed a regulated premises, all commercial vessels must adhere to the safety and certification requirements as directed by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority. For further information visit
There are many examples of businesses, functions and events that will require a liquor licence. Some of these include:
In the case of a raft-up event, all vessels involved in the event will require a licence if the consumption of liquor takes place between the vessel departure point and the destination. If consumption of liquor will only occur at a designated point, once passengers reach that destination, one licence to cover all of the vessels involved in the event will be sufficient.
Where a charter boat is hired, and guests are permitted to bring their own liquor on to the boat, charter boat operators and customers must be aware that the boat is still considered a ‘regulated premises’ under the Act if food, light refreshments
or non-intoxicating drinks are ordinarily served to members of the public on the boat.
For the purposes of sections 115 and 122 of the Act, any person who permits the sale, supply or consumption of liquor on a regulated premises to a juvenile
or a person who is drunk, commits an offence. A penalty of up to a $10,000 fine applies to this offence.
A charter boat will require a permanent licence if liquor is to be sold/supplied to customers on an ongoing basis. In the case of one-off events, an occasional licence will be required for the event.
The conditions that will be imposed on occasional licences will depend on the nature of the charter boat and the event. For example, an occasional licence for a small private function may have less conditions imposed than a raft-up event, which attracts
a higher level of risk. The following standard conditions will generally be imposed depending on the nature of the charter boat/event:
In addition to the above conditions, licence applications for events involving raft-ups will be required to include a management plan on how the event will be managed.
While the following may also be imposed as conditions of the licence, they should be considered best practice for any event involving the consumption of liquor on a charter boat:
Even if a liquor licence is not required, charter boat operators should consider implementing the above best-practice principles if liquor is to be consumed on their vessels.
Do not submit enquiries with this form.