Experiences Involving alcohol in Melbourne
These information pages can help you get started in learning about some of the laws and registration requirements that may apply to your experiences on Airbnb. These pages include summaries of some of the rules that may apply to different sorts of activities, and contain links to government resources that you may find helpful.
Please understand that these information pages are not comprehensive, and are not legal advice. If you are unsure about how local laws or this information may apply to you or your Experience, we encourage you to check with official sources or seek legal advice.
Please note that we don’t update this information in real time, so you should confirm that the laws or procedures have not changed recently.*
I plan to serve/provide alcohol as part of my Experience - do I need any licences for that?
The sale, purchase and consumption of alcohol is strictly regulated in Australia. In general, the sale of alcohol requires a liquor licence. You can find more information about the types of liquor licences available here. The sale of alcohol is generally a tricky area, so we encourage you to check with the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation or speak to your lawyer to make sure you are following the laws.
If you are considered to be selling alcohol for consumption on-premises and to take away as part of your Experience you will be required to apply for a General Licence. If your Experience involves selling alcohol for consumption on-premises only, you will be required to apply for an On-Premises Consumption Licence. If you are considered to be supplying alcohol in a substantially restricted or limited scale or scope, such as limited trading hours or days, or offering only a limited or specialised range of products, you may apply for a Renewable Limited Licence. These licences have an application fee of $461.30. You can apply for the licences by completing the relevant online application form available at the provided links and uploading the necessary supporting documents.
There is a separate licence available for temporary events that are held either on a one-off basis or as a series of events over a period of up to 3 months, which has a fee of $59.40 provided that you do not already hold an existing licence. Separate licences exist for BYO alcohol Experiences or for Experiences involving the operation of a winery, brewery or sporting or recreational club where alcohol will be supplied to members and guests.
If your experience involves operating a restaurant or entertainment venue that is open to the public, you will need to consider the likely impact on the community of your proposed business and the level of community support for the proposal.
You will need to ensure that all personnel who serve liquor have completed an approved Responsible Service of Alcohol course and have received a certificate.
You may qualify for the "minor business exemption", which is available if the supply of alcohol is only a small part of the products and services that form part of your Experience. To determine whether this exemption applies to your Experience, there are different criteria for bed and breakfasts, gift services, hairdressers, butchers, and cruises. More information is available here.
For bed & breakfasts, you will not need a liquor licence if you provide temporary guest accommodation and:
- there are fewer than 8 guests staying at the premises at any one time, and
- the alcohol is not provided to minors, and
- no more than 750ml of liquor is provided in any one room per day.
If you hold a liquor licence you may need to register your business with the local council. Please refer to our Business Licensing page for further information.
What if my Experience takes place at a bar?
You will not run afoul of regulations if you take your guests to your favourite local bars that are licensed under the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998. However, as a tour host you have a responsibility for the health and safety of your guests and should take particular care in relation to an Experience that involves the consumption of alcohol.
What if my Experience is BYO, and I want to allow guests to bring their own alcohol?
If you run a restaurant, recreational club or party bus as a business and your Experience involves allowing guests to bring their own alcohol, you may need to apply for a BYO Licence. Further information is available here. If you do not operate a restaurant, recreational club or party bus as a business then you will not need a liquor licence to allow guests to bring their own alcohol to your Experience.
I brew my own beer or produce my own wine. What else do I need to keep in mind?
If you brew your own alcohol, you will require a Brewery or Winery Licence. Further information about obtaining a Brewery or Winery Licence is available here.
If you brew your own alcohol, you must comply with any applicable health standards and labelling requirements for alcohol under the Australian New Zealand Food Standards Code. Further details may be found on the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation website.
If my Experience involves alcohol, do I need to watch out for anything else?
Yes: age of guests and location.
You should make sure that all attendees meet the minimum drinking age of 18. It is also not permitted to drink alcohol in some public places. You should contact your local council for more information. For example, the City of Melbourne provides information about alcohol bans in specified local areas on its website.
Please be aware of potential criminal offences and financial penalties for failure to comply with the liquor regulations, including by selling liquor to a person under 18.
If your Experience will also involve the preparation or serving of food, we encourage you to take a look at our information section about Experiences involving food. Similarly, if your Experience will combine alcohol with another activity (for example, a guided tour), please take a look at our other information sections to work out if any other rules might apply to your activity.
*Airbnb is not responsible for the reliability or correctness of the information contained in any links to third party sites (including any links to legislation and regulations).