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Outdoor dining under COVID-19 restrictions - what businesses need to know

News story
Thursday 30 Sep 2021

Updated 23 May  2022

Due to COVID-19 trading restrictions including capacity limits and social distancing requirements, businesses may be looking at ways to boost their trading area by using outdoor space.

Auckland Council has issued guidelines for applying for or extending outdoor spaces and information about applying for Liquor Licensing.

Following our lobbying, no application or rental fees will apply for temporary or temporarily extended food-only outdoor dining areas while restrictions (Level 4-2 or settings Red and Orange) are in place

Outdoor dining support grants up to $1,500 

Heart of the City is able to support hospitality businesses with outdoor dining support grants of up to $1,500 to enable trading under COVID-19 restrictions. Applications have now closed.

Applying for fast-tracked food only outdoor licenses

Auckland Council is fast-tracking applications for food-only outdoor dining using footpaths or other public spaces (like car parks) outside businesses. License application fees and rental fees are being waived for temporary or temporarily extended food-only outdoor dining areas.

To get your temporary application underway or apply to extend your current area, email council’s outdoor dining team:​

Outdoor dining license extensions

 More information is available here

Apply now for liquor licensing for outdoor dining areas

An alcohol license for your outdoor area is a separate application process. These cannot be fast-tracked and there may be processing delays beyond the standard 6 weeks due to COVID. With alert level change timing unknown, if a liquor license is critical to your outdoor dining and you want to make an application, we recommend doing this as soon as possible. To get started, email:

If you have any questions or need more information, please get in touch.