NSW allows small bars to sell (and deliver) takeaway alcohol — what you need to know

The NSW Government is allowing bars to sell takeaway alcohol.

This morning, the Sydney Morning Herald is reporting that bars in NSW will be allowed to sell takeaway and delivery alcohol.

It will allow cocktail bars to sell takeaway cocktails, beers, wines and spirits and comes into effect from Tuesday 24 March. Although takeaway and delivery sales aren’t going to make up for a week of trade in your bar, every little bit helps.

In a statement on the Liquor & Gaming NSW site — which you can read in full here — they say that they recognise current enforcement of some licence conditions is redundant, and that they intend to move to commonsense enforcement of licence conditions.

“While legislative requirements remain in force, Liquor & Gaming NSW will have regard to the unprecedented pressures on industry and take a reasonable and proportionate response to compliance,” it said in a statement.

“This includes where a licensed premises, such as a restaurant, café or small bar, does not have authorisation for the sale or supply of liquor for consumption away from the premises, but wishes to provide take-away or home delivery services.”

They intend to make changes to the Liquor Regulation 2018 to “provide certainty to these arrangements,” however in the meantime the statement of regulatory intent on their website will be in effect until either the regulations change, or the NSW coronavirus public health order is ended.

Read the statement of regulatory intent in full hereRead the statement of regulatory intent in full here.

The move comes after Victorian Commission for Gambling & Liquor Regulation announced that bars that were not already licensed for off-premise alcohol sales would be able to apply for a temporary limited licence available to supply liquor off-premises, although they would restrict the volume allowed per person.

“This limit is two bottles of wine or two six packs of beer, cider or pre-mixed spirits, OR one bottle of wine and one six pack of beer, cider or pre-mixed spirits,” they said. You can get the full details here.

The Queensland government has also announced measures that will allow restaurants and cafes to sell takeaway alcohol with meals, but there is nothing announced for bars — more information here.