Liquor licensee tips

We share advice for managing an alcohol business.

Tips for success

  • Do not sell alcohol to people under age 21 or hire anyone under the age of 18. Insist on an ID.
  • Do not let anyone drink on your premises after hours, including employees.
  • Provide alcohol service training to employees within 60 days of hire and each year after. Training topics should include:
    • Laws about sale of alcohol
    • Rules for identification checks
    • Recognizing intoxicated persons
    • Responsibilities of businesses that serve intoxicating liquors
  • Do not allow anyone to take open containers of alcohol from your premises.
  • Be a good neighbor.
  • Do not allow unlawful gambling on your premises.
  • Notify the police of illegal activity.
  • Pick up litter each day.
  • Keep your insurance up-to-date.
  • Know your occupancy limit. Don’t violate it. This includes both inside and outside.
  • Have an exit plan for closing time. Encourage patrons to leave without disturbing nearby neighbors.
  • Follow your approved business plan, including hours, security and entertainment.
  • Follow these tips for discouraging patrons from drinking too much:
    • Limit drink specials
    • Create appetizer and drink offers
    • Offer food specials during happy hour
    • Add more virgin drinks to your menu
    • Install kitchen equipment to diversify your menu
    • Advertise food specials
  • Let us know if you make any changes to your business. Failure to report may result in adverse license action. The City Council must approve changes in:
    • Owners, officers, directors, shareholders or managers
    • Physical space, such as enlarging your premises or adding a sidewalk café
  • Pay your taxes, fees, assessments and fines. We cannot approve a license if you owe money to the City or State of Minnesota.

Contact us

Business Licenses & Consumer Services

Community Planning & Economic Development






Public Service Building 
505 Fourth Ave. S., Room 220
Minneapolis, MN 55415