Virginia ABC > Licenses > Get a License > Licensing FAQs

Licensing FAQs

Executive Order 51 Update Effective July 1, 2021

Starting July 1, 2021, there will be changes to procedural and regulatory matters for ABC licensed businesses. Please visit our COVID-19 Licensee Resources page for details.

Obtaining a Banquet License

How many days in advance of the event should a banquet application be submitted?

Banquet license applicants should apply at least 10 days prior to the date of the event.

When is it appropriate to get a one-day banquet license?

Whenever alcoholic beverages are being sold, dispensed in a public place, where food is sold for compensation, on the premises of a club, and to purchase alcoholic beverages from a wholesaler.

Obtaining a Retail License

Following are a few frequently asked questions related to the ABC licensing process. Information about specific license types can be found on the appropriate page using the links to the right. For more information about any licensing issue, please contact your ABC special agent.


How do you obtain an ABC license in Virginia?

By submitting an application on forms provided by Virginia ABC for the desired type of banquet, retail or industry licenses.

How long does it take to get a retail license?

Retail license applicants should apply at least 60 days prior to scheduled opening date.

Are ABC licenses transferable?


How much alcohol can be legally transported into Virginia?

One gallon or four liters, if in metric size containers, per person of legal age.

What newspapers are acceptable to publish in for ABC licenses?

Any English-language newspaper published in or having a general circulation in the county, city or town wherein such applicant proposes to engage in such business. (COV 8.01-324)

Can an officer of a corporation, living abroad, obtain an ABC license?


For Assistance

For ABC licensing assistance, please contact your regional ABC office or email 

Bringing Personal Alcohol Into Virginia?

Moving into Virginia from out of the country or from another U.S. state? Returning to Virginia from vacation? Learn more about bringing personal alcohol into the Commonwealth.

Keg Information

If you are a consumer and wish to purchase a keg click here.

Out-of-State Delivery

Apply for out-of-state delivery and out-of-bond permits using the Virginia ABC License Application (PDF).