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Effective date: 23 October 2009
Last amended: 23 February 2021
Next review: 23 February 2023


This policy guideline is designed to provide accurate and authoritative 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.


The Liquor Control Act 1988 (the Act) sets out the fundamental trading conditions for each class of licence with sections 98 to 98H of the Act providing the permitted trading hours.

Under section 60 of the Act the licensing authority may grant an extended trading permit (ETP) authorising the licensee to sell and supply liquor in circumstances to which the licence would not otherwise apply. In addition, section 63 of the Act empowers the licensing authority, to vary any term or condition imposed on a licence.

An application for an ETP, or to vary or cancel a condition of a licence must be considered on its own merits, and therefore, the onus is on the licensee to demonstrate the merits of their application.

This policy provides guidance as to the circumstances in which permits or variations to licence conditions may be considered. This list of circumstances is not exhaustive, please contact the department on 61 8 6551 4888 if you require further information in relation to your particular circumstances.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the Director’s policies on:

Extended trading hours

Public holidays, peak holiday tourist periods and special dates

Christmas and New Year

Peak holiday/tourist periods

  • Non-metropolitan liquor stores located in holiday and/or tourist areas, which traditionally attract a large influx of visitors over peak periods, may seek to trade on Sunday/s during those peak periods. Submissions in support of the application will be required. Licensees should also refer to the policy on Extended Trading Permits – Sunday Trading: Non-metro Liquor Stores.
  • ETPs will not be granted to authorise trading on Good Friday (section 60(4) of the Act specifically prohibits extended trading hours on Good Friday).


  • RSL clubs who hold a club or club restricted licence may apply to trade between 6 am and 12 midday on ANZAC Day to sell and supply liquor to either members and guests or to non-members (see further information below regarding restrictions on non-member permits). Hotels, taverns, small bars and some special facility licences may seek approval for a private function being held specifically for RSL members and their guests — no general public will be allowed entry to the function.

St Patrick’s Day

  • Traditionally Irish themed hotels, taverns, nightclubs, clubs and certain special facility licences may seek an extension of trading hours on St Patrick’s Day.

Mothers' Day and Fathers' Day

  • Licensees may seek a permit to extend trading hours for Mothers’ Day and Fathers’ Day functions. However, the permit will generally be conditioned such that liquor may only be sold and supplied ancillary to a meal provided by the licensee.

National race days

  • Licensed premises with a TAB facility may seek a permit for additional trading hours to cater for patrons of the TAB facility during a race meeting.

Public holiday long weekends

  • The 2015 amendments to the Act increased extended trading hours for hotel, tavern and small bar licences to 12 midnight every Sunday. In addition, the standard trading hours for nightclubs were extended to 2 am on Monday mornings.
  • Given this increase in trading hours on Sundays, applications for one off extended trading permits on Sundays preceding a gazetted public holiday that falls on a Monday will generally not be approved, unless exceptional circumstances exist.

Entertainment such as bands, DJs

  • Licensees in the metropolitan area may seek approval for one (1) additional hour if the entertainment being provided is a live performance by an interstate or international bona fide band, DJ or artist.
  • Licensees outside of the metropolitan area may seek approval if the entertainment being provided is a live performance by a bona fide band, DJ or artist who is not based in the local area.

Private functions/events

  • Applications for extended trading hours will generally only be considered where a patron has approached the licensee to hold a private function, for example a 21st birthday party; wedding reception; fashion parade etc.
  • The function should be a private event to which the general public will not be admitted.

Live broadcasts of sporting events

  • Licensees may seek approval for extended trading hours during live broadcasts of events such as the FA Cup; a World Cup; Olympic Games; AFL Grand Final; or world title boxing matches.
  • Where there is a national team competing in a final, and the premises has a strong emphasis or theme that is consistent with that nation, the application will be looked at favourably. Submissions in support of the application will be required.
  • Approvals for these events will be conditioned such that patrons must be there for the purpose of watching the live broadcast, and lock-out conditions may also be imposed.

Local festivals

  • Licensees may seek approval where there is a large influx of visitors due to a local festival or special event occurring in the town. Submissions in support of the application will be required. Applications will be considered on their own merits in the context of the local event. The applicant must demonstrate a genuine need for extended hours in relation to the event.

Event after parties

  • Where a licensee has been approached by the organisers of a major event to hold the official 'after party', applications for extensions to approved hours may be considered if the licensee can demonstrate that:
    1. the application is to extend trading hours to hold a private 'after party' for organisers, performers, volunteers, exhibitors etc in a specified part of the licensed premises and is at the request of the festival organiser; and
    2. the general public are not permitted entry to the 'after party' function.

Other Extended Trading Permits


  • Nightclubs may seek a permit to authorise the sale and supply of liquor at a special function being held on the licensed premises whether or not continuous live entertainment is being provided. For example, a matinee show of a live performer or a corporate function.


  • Club licensees may seek an ETP to authorise the sale and supply of liquor at a special occasion or function, on the licensed premises, to persons other than members or guests of members, that is; the general public. For example: an open day, or a function such as a wedding reception being held by a non-member.
  • While the nature of the function will be taken into consideration at the time of determination, there is no restriction on the club as to the reason for such permits.
  • Generally, no more than twenty four (24) approvals of this kind shall be issued in a 12 month period.
  • Licensees should also refer to the policy on Extended Trading Permits — Sale and Supply Liquor to Non-members at Club and Club Restricted Premises for further information.


Restaurant licences may seek an ETP to authorise the sale and supply of liquor at a private function being held on the licensed premises where no meal is being supplied.

With the exception of a 'grand opening' and New Year’s Eve functions, permits will generally not be granted where the licensee is seeking to host a function that is open to the public.

Applications will generally be considered where a patron has approached the licensee to hold a private function, for example: a birthday/wedding anniversary celebration, wedding reception or fashion launch/parade.

Generally, no more than twenty four (24) permits of this kind may be issued in a twelve (12) month period. Applicants should refer to Extended Trading Permits — Restaurants Holding Finger Food/Cocktail Functions for further information.

Extended area approval

  • Approvals may be issued to authorise a licensee to sell and supply liquor at a function away from their licensed premises provided the area is adjacent to the licensed premises. This could include a carpark, or an adjacent building.

One Off Extended Trading Permits — Caterers

  • Section 60(4)(a) of the Act specifically identifies that one of the purposes for which an ETP may be granted is to allow catering, that is, authorising a licensee to sell liquor as a caterer for a one-off event. Under such an approval the licensee is authorised to sell and supply liquor at unlicensed premises, where it has been engaged and has agreed as a caterer to provide liquor, whether with or without food, for consumption by persons on those premises only, subject to the requirement that the consent of the owner or occupier of the premises has been obtained. Please also refer to the policy on temporary bars for further information.

Please note:

  • Where a licensee has been engaged to cater for a third party at a location not licensed, the area where liquor will be sold and supplied does not need to be adjacent to the licensed premises; and
  • The licensee must be responsible for the business conducted under the licence which includes the responsibility for employing/engaging the security/crowd controllers in the licensed area.

General restrictions and conditions of approvals

  • As a matter of policy, only one (1) additional trading hour will be approved. Special circumstances would need to be demonstrated before any additional hours will be considered in excess of one (1) hour.
  • An application for an extension of hours and/or area will be considered on its merits and will be determined on the papers. Therefore, licensees must lodge submissions in support of their application at the time of lodgement that address the following criteria:
    1. what type of entertainment is being provided?
    2. is food being provided?
    3. does the licensee adopt responsible serving practices?
    4. does the licensee have a management plan, security, staff instructions and code of practice? and
    5. what special management measures are being put in place to manage the function or event?

This list in not exhaustive and other criteria may be relevant.

Lodging an application

A licensee seeking an approval under these provisions will be required to meet the following criteria:

  1. Lodgement of an application for an Extended Trading Permit for Special Occasion or Function or an application to Add, Vary or Cancel Condition of a Licence or Permit for a Special Occasion or Function.
  2. Submissions in support of the application;
  3. Any approvals and/or consents that the licensing authority considers appropriate; and
  4. Payment of the prescribed application fee (plus an additional fee for each additional day).

For events where over 500 patrons are expected to attend a copy of the management plan for the event maybe required.

Important: applications must be submitted in accordance with the minimum timeframes specified in the table below. Failure to do so is likely to result in the application being refused.

Lodgement periods:

  • up to 500 people 14 days
  • between 501 and 5000 people 60 days
  • over 5000 people 90 days.

Application kits containing the lodgement guide and all the required forms can be downloaded from the department’s website or by contacting the department on 61 8 6551 4888

Related pages

Page reviewed 11 September 2023