July ­­15, 2020

To support the Ontario tourism industry and other businesses economically impacted by COVID-19, the Government has amended Regulation 719 under the Liquor Licence Act (LLA) to allow boat operators with a liquor sales licence to sell and serve alcohol while their vessel is docked.

Once they are again permitted to welcome passengers, and until 3:00 a.m. on January 1, 2021, boat operators with a liquor sales licence do not have to be primarily transporting passengers and be underway in order to sell and serve alcohol.

In addition, to provide boat operators the same flexibility as other liquor sales licensees, they are also permitted to temporarily extend their licensed premises, provided they have municipal approval and meet all applicable eligibility criteria. Boat operators with a liquor sales licence, who wish to temporarily add a physical extension to their docked boat i.e. a patio, are authorized to do so until January 1, 2021, if they meet the below criteria:

  1. The physical extension of the premises is a dock to which the boat is attached and may include land adjacent to the dock;
  2. Access to water surrounding the dock and any land adjacent to the dock is prevented by a physical barrier;
  3. The municipality in which the boat is docked has indicated it does not object to an extension;
  4. The licensee is able to demonstrate sufficient control over the physical extension of the premises;
  5. The capacity of the temporarily extended premises does not exceed 1.11 square metres per person.

As an example of maximum capacity, a new 100 square metre patio would be 90 people ( 100m2 ÷ 1.11 m2/person = 90 persons ).

All licensees are expected to comply with physical distancing measures and any other public health guidelines or orders issued by the Ontario Government or by any other applicable level of government. As a result, due to physical distancing requirements, licensees will likely be required to operate below the maximum capacity.

Licensees that meet the above criteria are not required to apply or submit any documentation to the AGCO to demonstrate compliance with the above criteria. However, licensees are required to produce such documentation, if requested by the AGCO.

The AGCO remains committed to protecting public safety and ensuring that alcohol is sold, served, delivered and consumed in a responsible manner. Licensees must continue to adhere to the conditions on their licence and meet all other existing requirements in the LLA and regulations.

Further information on these new measures can be obtained by calling AGCO Customer Service at 1-800-522-2876 or by visiting the AGCO webpage.

Links to electronic versions of the Liquor Licence Act and its regulations are available on our Acts and Regulations page.


AGCO Customer Service
Telephone: 416-326-8700
Toll free in Ontario: 1-800-522-2876
Or via the iAGCO online portal

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