Special occasion permits

Find out about special occasion permits.


Your special occasion is an important event in your life. You’ve done research and you have a vision. Now you’re thinking about the event details, including serving alcohol. As you look at the venue, some questions may arise. We’re here to help. 

Do I need a permit?

You don’t need a permit (also known as a special occasion permit) if you’re serving alcohol to invited guests in your own home or a private place. A private place is an indoor place where the public wouldn’t normally be and isn’t rented out to the public. A company´s private boardroom is an example of a private place.

You do need a permit for:

  • Events where alcohol is being sold in a private place, unless the event is already being held at a place that has a catering endorsement 
  • Events of municipal meaning or to raise money for a registered charity and that benefit the public
  • A tailgate event that is held in connection with and in proximity to, an eligible live sporting event 

Who is responsible for the permit/licence?

Your event venue may already have a liquor sales licence that covers your event. If so, great! You’re all set. 

If not, you’ll need to get the liquor permit yourself. We’re here to help. Let’s get started!

What kind of permit do I need? 

There are several types of liquor permits based on the type of event you’re hosting.

Not sure where to start?

My event is… 

Private events can include “stag and does”, bridal showers, wedding receptions, anniversary parties, birthday parties, funeral receptions or other events with invited guests only. I won’t advertise, raise money, or make money from selling alcohol at my event.

Apply for a private special occasion permit


Public events are open to the public. Examples can include general public events, industry promotional events, tailgate parties and auctions. I will advertise, raise money, or make money from selling alcohol at my event.

Learn more about public special occasion permits

Apply to sell or serve alcohol at a private event

Find information about what type of special occasion permit you need for your private event and how to apply.

Learn more