How To Get A Liquor Licence - | The Hospitality Management Company
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Everything You Need To Know About Liquor Licences

Liquor licenses in South Africa

Everything You Need To Know About Liquor Licences

How to get a liquor licence

If you want to sell alcohol, you will need to have a liquor licence in terms of the liquor legislation.  Failing to register is a criminal offence and the penalties are severe.

 The word “sell” is defined in terms of the liquor legislation as “supply, exchange, offer for sale, display, deliver, supply or dispose of for sale or authorise, direct or allow a sale”.

Moreover, holders of liquor licences must renew their licence every year. If the holder fails to renew the liquor licence, the licence will expire.  If a liquor licence expires, a new licence application must be made.


How to apply for a liquor licence and liquor licence application requirements:

The liquor licence application process may vary from province to province and requires a large amount of supporting documentation.  The Provincial Liquor Board reviews each application thoroughly while bearing in mind several factors. These factors include the municipal and zoning regulations, the intended use of the premises and the particularities of the applicants, as well as any objections lodged against the granting of a liquor licence.

Each liquor licence application is unique. Therefore it is difficult to predict how long the Provincial Liquor Board will take to consider and process an application.  At THMC we proactively work with all parties to ensure that applications are processed as swiftly as is possible.

THMC always works in compliance with the New Western Cape Liquor Act, No 4 of 2008, carefully following all the steps as per legal requirements.  In doing so we ensure you obtain a legally valid liquor licence for your premises.

You can find additional information on the New Western Cape Liquor Act. No 4 of 2008 below.  


The New Western Cape Liquor Act, No 4 of 2008

The New Western Cape Liquor Act, No 4 of 2008, came into effect on 1 April 2012. Other provinces (excluding Gauteng) operate under Section 19 of the Liquor Act of 1989.


Under Section 33 the following categories of liquor licences can be applied for:
  • Licensing for the micro-manufacture and sale of liquor for consumption both on and off the proposed premise.
  • Licensing for the sale of liquor for consumption on the proposed premises.
  • In exceptional circumstances, a licence for the sale of liquor for consumption both on and off the proposed premises.
  • A licence for the sale of liquor for consumption on or off the premises, upon which liquor is sold at a special event.
  • A temporary liquor licence for the sale of liquor for consumption on or off the proposed premises.


The Liquor Licensing Tribunal will consider applications based on the following:

The granting of a liquor licence can only be granted if it is in the public interest, the granting thereof is in the public interest if:

  • The Applicant(s) are of good character, and not disqualified from holding or managing a licence in terms of the act.
  • The proposed premises on which the sale or consumption of alcohol will take place is completed as per the regulations and application submitted for the purpose of the licence.
  • The applicant has the right to occupy the proposed premises.
  • The granting of the application does not prejudice any residents, educational institution or place of worship.


Application procedure and documentation required:

The Board and the designated Liquor Officer in whose area of jurisdiction the proposed premises are located must have received your application for a liquor licence by the last Friday of the calendar month in the Western Cape (section 36). The Board will accept no applications during December. The required application forms must be correctly completed and compiled as per the required regulation.

Where necessary the Municipality concerned must have a copy of a planning application submitted to it. Moreover, the required fees must be paid in the correct manner.  A 50% deposit is payable prior to compiling the application and the balance is payable before the submission of the application.


You will need to provide the following documents/actions:
  • Proof of ID documents or registration of applicants or members/shareholders of the legal entity.
  • A zoning certificate by the local authorities in which jurisdiction the premises lies. Which states that the intended use of the property is in order.
  • A plan of the premises.
  • A site plan.
  • Description of the premises.
  • Proof of right of occupation of the premises. Such as a Title Deed or a valid current Lease Agreement.
  • Colour photographs.
  • Presentations in support of the application.
  • Proof of notice in terms of Section 37(1) & (2), reg.9(2) & 9(4), 10(1), 10(2) of the Act.
  • Exceptional circumstances (if required).
  • If the proposed liquor licence holder is a company, cc or trust, it must appoint a manager to be in control of the premises.
  • A menu should the proposed premises intend providing food.


Additional obligations of a licence holder: 

A holder of an existing licence is required to inform the Liquor Board of a change in management, financial changes, or structural alterations.


Apply For A Liquor Licence Without The Hassle:

The Hospitality Management Company offer a variety of licensing services and can confidently manage the entire process from start to finish.

Click here to contact us for more information on our licensing services.


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