Central City liquor ban

Drinking and/or possession of liquor is prohibited at all times in any public place within the Wellington city control area.

Courtenay Place at night.

Courtenay Place at night

24/7 liquor-free zone

The control area is:

  • Wellington Central area
  • Oriental Bay
  • Mount Victoria lookout
  • Aro Valley
  • Central Park
  • Mount Cook
  • Newtown.


Liquor ban area poster (1.2MB PDF)

The central city liquor ban is a safety initiative to:

  • reduce alcohol-related crime and disorder
  • provide a safe city environment for everyone.

Research carried out by the Council and police has found that alcohol is a factor in the majority of arrests made for disorder, violence and sexual offending in the city.

Application to consume liquor

Pursuant to section 4.1 of the Wellington Consolidated Bylaw 2008, Part 4 - Liquor Control, the Council can authorise low-risk activities that would otherwise breach the liquor ban.

If you want permission to hold an event where a limited amount of alcohol will be consumed in a public place, call the Public Health Team on (04) 499 4444. Depending on the circumstances, you will either need to apply for a special license or an exemption from the bylaw.


Wellington City Council's 24/7 Liquor Control Bylaw came into effect on 31 July 2008 at 5pm. On 25 June 2010, Wellington City Council decided to extend the liquor ban area to include Mount Cook and Newtown.

News - Liquor Ban - 05.07.10