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An Overview of Bar License

In India, opening a bar requires a lot of research, thought and planning. So if you want to open a Bar in India, then you will need to apply for a Bar License. In India, a Bar License allows you to sell alcohol for consumption on the licensed premises, but it doesn’t allow you take-away liquor or gaming. If the establishment or Bar is set up in an attractive location with ample parking, one can sit relax, watch the crowds walk in & make themselves comfortable.

Any Bar in India that wants to serve liquor requires an appropriate Liquor License. Operating a Bar without a Liquor License can lead to huge penalties, shutdowns & legal repercussions. Corpbiz will also help you in obtaining a Liquor License along with the Bar License.

Different Types of Bars in India

There are different types of Bars that can be established and the type of Bar to be set up is dependent on various factors such as capital investment available, the kind of ambience or environment that the owner is going for, the skills of the staff, etc.

  • Pub: It’s a public house place which serves alcohol & food, on occasion, where people generally meet & socialise.
  • Nightclubs: Aside from serving food & alcohol, Nightclubs offer a variety in terms of entertainment, such as music, dancing, and comedy act, and generally operate from the late evenings & stay open until the wee hours of the morning.
  • Lounge: It's an upscale bar which is very well furnished with comfortable seating arrangements & often prices its drinks at higher rates.
  • Sports Bar: It’s one where sports matches are televised continuously & alcoholic beverages are served as well.
  • Tapas Bar: It’s one where drinks are served along with light snacks & appetisers served as well.

Types of Liquor Licenses in India

Following are the various types of Liquor Licenses in India:

  • L-1 License: This License is for the wholesale supply of Indian liquor to other license holders.
  • L-3 License: This is for hotels to provide guests with foreign or overseas liquor in their rooms (requires approval from Tourism Department).
  • L-5 License: This License is for hotels to serve liquor or alchol in bars within their registered premises.
  • L-19 License: This License is for registered clubs to serve foreign or overseas liquor to members.
  • L-49A License: For serving liquor at parties or marriages at a specific location in Delhi.
  • Beer& Wine License: To allow Bars to sell beers & wines.
  • Restaurant License: This License is for Establishments that make less than 40% of their overall profits from the sale of alcohol.
  • Tavern License: Establishments that make 50% of their profits via the sale of alcohol.
  • Personal Bar License: This License allows an individual to sell alcohol on behalf of a registered business.

Who can apply for Personal Bar License?

  • In order to apply for Bar License, you must be aged 18 years or above and, in almost all instances, hold a relevant licensing qualification.
  • If you are applying, you should obtain an accreditation qualification first. The purpose of the qualification is to ensure that License owners are aware of Licensing Law & the extensive social responsibilities involved in the sale of alcohol.

Selection of the Right Location for Your Bar

Opening a Bar requires the right location and the location of your Bar can play a major role in inviting a large number of customers. Moreover, some states require that a Bar is attached to a hotel with a minimum number of rooms and that Bar must be located at a certain distance from schools, places of worship, etc.

Licenses Required to Open a Bar in India

The following are different licenses required to start s Bar in India:

  • Liquor License;
  • Sign Permit;
  • Food Service License;
  • Business License (before becoming an owner of the restuarant or Bar, you need to obtain this License);
  • EIN or Employee Identification Number;
  • Permit for food handler.

Documents Required for Bar License in India

Following are some vital Documents required for Bar License in India:

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Procedure for Applying for a Bar License

Following is the procedure for Bar License:

Step 1: Filing of Application: The first step is to file an application form; our experts will help you in filling the application. You just need to provide all the relevant details along with the requisite fee.

Step 2: Documentation: After filing the application form for Bar License, you need to provide all the vital Documents. Based on the License being applied for, the relevant Documents may vary. However, some of them remain common to all types of License like ID proof, NOC from the Municipal Corporation, Address Proof, applicant's photograph, etc.

Step 3: Submission & Additional Information: After submitting the application form and Documents, the same will be examined by the Licensing Authority (LA). The Licensing Authority (LA) also possesses the power to call for any extra or additional Documents or information.

Step 4: Public Notice: Once the application is found to be in order, then a notice will be issued by the Licensing Authority on the personal/business address of the applicant with the name & license details. Any objections to the same may be brought to the Authority's notice.

Step 5: Issuance of License: If there are no objections raised, the application shall be passed and the License shall be issued. However, if there are any objections, the applicant may exercise their right to defend himself against such objections raised.

Note: The License is valid for only 1 year and it can be renewed yearly by using the renewal application form & the renewal fee has to be paid to the concerned Authority.

Corpbiz Assitance in Obtaining Bar License

  • Purchase a Plan for Expert Assistance
  • Add Queries Regarding Bar License 
  • Provide required Documents to Corpbiz Expert
  • Complete all Admissibility Criteria for Preliminary Screening
  • Complete all Procedural Actions
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Frequently Asked Questions

No, without this License, a pub cannot serve alcoholic drinks to the consumer. The applicant must meet all the standards. It is an offence if the applicant doesn’t have a license and runs a Bar.

Yes, the FSSAI License is vital for starting a Bar Business in India.

Advantages of a Bar License:

  • Improves the company's reputation
  • Turnover has risen
  • Observance of the applicable State Excise Authority

It is vital that your Bar is properly licensed or certified before you open for business to avoid legal penalties or troubles. Licenses are needed to serve food, alcohol and even to play music in your Bar.

This License is planned to ensure that anybody running or managing a business that supplies or sells alcohol will do so in a professional manner.

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