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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 or provide alcohol as part of my experience - do I need any licences for that?
The sale, purchase and consumption of alcohol is tightly regulated in Ireland.
If you would like to sell alcohol as part of your experience, you will need a liquor licence to enable you to do this. Selling alcohol in Ireland without a licence is a criminal offence.
If you do not already have a liquor licence, getting one will involve a court application which can be complicated. You may want to consider contacting a legal advisor for advice on what is involved, the cost of an application and what type of liquor licence would be appropriate for your circumstances.
Selling alcohol includes situations where:
- Alcohol is sold for consumption on your premises (if, for example, you charge guests for a glass of wine that they drink at your home or at an event you’re organising in a place that does not have a liquor licence) or to take off the premises (if, for instance, you charge guests for a gin-infusing workshop, where they get to infuse and take away their own bottle of gin).
- You are also considered to be selling alcohol when alcohol is included as part of an event price (for example, you charge for a meal that includes alcohol), or where you apply a hidden charge for alcohol (for example, you charge for a meal and offer “complimentary" alcohol, the cost of which is factored into the charge that guests pay for the meal).
Here are some examples of where the above considerations are likely to apply (but please double-check with a legal advisor):
- I want to host evening drinks and snacks at home to greet guests. I’d like to charge for this experience.
- I’d like to run a gin-infusing course. I’ll provide the gin and ingredients to guests OR guests will bring their own alcohol, and they’ll take a bottle of infused gin home.
- I’ll be serving a meal at home. I’d like to let people bring their own alcohol if they want to but I’d like to charge a corkage fee or factor a corkage charge into the price of my Experience.
- I’d like to bring guests on a visit to some local bars. I have an agreement with the publicans under which I receive a fee which is calculated by reference to the value of the sale of the drinks by the publican to my guests.
Here are some examples of where the above considerations may not apply (but please double-check with a legal advisor):
- I’d like to bring guests on a visit to a couple of local bars. I’ve agreed a flat fee with the publicans in question which isn’t connected in any way to the amount of money spent by the group on alcohol.
- I’ll be serving meals at home - I’d like to let people bring and serve their alcohol to themselves if they want to. I will not charge anything for this and the fee I charge for the meal covers the meal only. This is considered to be a grey area and it’s a good idea to check the position with a legal advisor.
- I’ll be serving meals at home - I’d like to serve one complimentary glass of alcohol to guests when they arrive. I’m not recovering my cost for this in a hidden charge. This is considered to be a grey area and it’s a good idea to check the position with a legal advisor.
What if my experience is BYO and takes place in a public place?
There is no national legislation in Ireland prohibiting drinking alcohol in public. However, a local authority may have passed bye-laws which prohibit public consumption of alcohol so it’s a good idea to check with your local authority. For example Dublin City Council has passed bye laws which prohibit drinking alcohol on roads and in public places such as, for example parks, beaches and canal banks.
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 are 18 or older.
- It is an offence to buy alcohol for someone under the age of 18 and also to give alcohol to someone under the age of 18 unless you have their parent’s consent and it is provided in a domestic residence.
- It is not possible to drink alcohol in some public places and on some types of public transport, e.g. Dublin Bus.
Is there anything else I should think about?
If your experience will also involve serving or providing food, we recommend that you take a look at our information about Experiences Involving Food. If your experience will involve combining alcohol with another activity (for example, a guided tour of an area), please take a look at our other information sections to work out if any other rules might apply to your activity.
We recommend you also read our other information pages on Business Licenses. If you are in any doubt, we recommend you get in touch with an accountant or legal advisor to find out whether you’re operating as a business.
You should be aware of potential criminal offences for selling alcohol without the required licenses or serving alcohol to underaged persons, which may include financial penalties and the possibility of a custodial sentence.
*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).
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