Occasional Licence

In Scotland, if you wish to sell alcohol from an unlicensed venue or location such as a charity event or a wedding reception then you will need an occasional licence.


Occasional Licence


Local Council

COST £10.00
VALID FOR 14 days
QUALIFICATION(S) NEEDED Certificate for Personal Licence Holders (SCPLH) qualification.

Obtain Scottish Personal Licence

Attend Scottish Personal Licence Training Course
Pass Multiple Choice Exam
Obtain SCPLH Qualification
Apply for Scottish Personal Licence via Local Council

Obtain Premises Licence

Apply for Premises Licence via Local Council

Be a Member of a Voluntary Organisation

Provide copy of the organisation's constitution
Provide letter from the Chair or Secretary confirming that the applicant is authorised to make this application.
Get Licenced

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What is an occasional licence?

If you wish to sell alcohol from premises that are not licensed for the sale of alcohol then you will need an occasional licence.


We make getting your occasional licence a simple, stress-free process 


An occasional licence is required in terms of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 for the temporary sale of alcohol at a venue which is not covered by a premises licence, this could including anything from local halls, community centre or any other type of one-off events in an unlicensed premises.


What is an occasional event?

The definition of an occasional event can vary from a wedding reception to a large-scale music concert.


An occasional licence would be appropriate where for example the holder of a premises licence wishes to host an event where the sale of alcohol would be in operation, this could be a community-based fundraising event or a birthday party in a town hall.


These types of events would be held outside the boundaries of the licensed premises and therefore an occasional licence would be required.


Another example would be one-off events where the intention is to sell alcohol on a temporary basis for a specified time-period at a venue that is otherwise unlicensed. Such one-off events can range from a music festival lasting over a number of days to a local community event hosted by voluntary organisations.


Note - The definition of the term ‘sell’ in this context includes the supply of alcoholic drinks which are included as part of a prepaid ticket or entrance fee.


Who can apply for an occasional licence?

An occasional licence can only be applied for if any of the following conditions are true about the applicant:


✅ the applicant is from a voluntary organisation.

✅ the applicant holds a premises licence to sell alcohol.

✅ the applicant holds a personal licence to sell alcohol.


If you do not hold a personal licence and wish to sell alcohol you must first obtain a Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence Holders (SCPLH) qualification. You can achieve this by enrolling on a Scottish Personal Licence Training Course.

Applicants may also complete an Online Personal Licence Training Course.

How to apply for an occasional licence

Occasional licence applications must be made via your local council. You can find the contact details for your local council at the Official UK Government Website.


Yes. If you hold a premises licence and wish to sell alcohol from premises that are not licensed, you must apply for an occasional licence.
Occasional licences are valid for no more than 14 days.
No. There are limits as to how many occasional licences you can apply for. If you are a voluntary organisation, you can apply each year for a maximum of 4 occasional licences, each lasting for between 4 and 14 days, or 12 occasional licences, each lasting for 4 days or less.
No. If you sell alcohol at an event that is not a licensed venue you may be fined up to £20,000 and face going to prison.

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