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Nightclubs, bars, restaurants, and gambling arcades

Questions and answers for owners of nightclubs, bars, restaurants, gambling arcades etc.

 
Nightclubs, restaurants, gambling arcades etc.

Yes. Establishments selling food, drinks or tobacco for consumption on-site can stay open from 5.00 am to 10.00 pm. This applies to both indoor and outdoor areas. 

Establishments selling food, drinks or tobacco for consumption on-site comprise dining places such as restaurants and cafes, bars such as wine bars, cocktail bars and pubs, and places like hookah cafes.

The requirement to wear face mask or shields applies at all establishments selling food, drinks or tobacco for consumption on-site unless guests are seated. The requirement to wear face masks or shields also applies at establishments selling takeaway food or drinks. For further details, see the Q&A section 'Requirement to wear face masks or shields'.

All establishments selling food or drinks must normally stay closed from 10.00 pm to 5.00 am. However, the following exception applies:

Restaurants and cafes etc. can sell takeaway food and drinks from 10.00 pm to 5.00 am (if they have the requisite licences under other relevant legislation). Restaurants, cafes etc. cannot be required to remove tables and chairs between 10.00 pm and 5.00 am, but if an owner does not arrange the removal of tables and chairs or rope off or otherwise seal off the area, the owner must display signs saying that eating, drinking and smoking is prohibited at the tables of the restaurant/cafe during that period. 

All establishments selling food, drinks or tobacco for consumption on-site, that is, all restaurants, cafes, bars etc., and all restaurants and cafes selling takeaway food or drinks must observe the following directions at their premises:

 
  • Ensure a free floor area of at least four square metres for each customer, visitor or participant. However, at premises where customers, visitors or participants are mainly seated, one customer, visitor or participant is allowed for each two square metres of floor area. 
  • Restaurants, bars and similar establishments must display information posters at entrance doors stating the maximum number of people allowed at the premises. Information posters must also be displayed in or at the premises to remind people of the requirement to wear a face mask or shield and of the risk that they can be asked to leave. 
  • Ensure that all employees and other persons admitted to the premises observe the Danish Health Authority's recommendations on good hygiene and appropriate conduct.
  • Display information posters telling people with symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate themselves at home.
  • Display information posters on good hygiene and appropriate conduct in public spaces. 
  • Make water and soap and/or hand sanitizer (with an alcohol concentration of at least 70%) available to customers, visitors and participants. 
  • Ensure that employees and other persons admitted to the premises use gloves when selling and delivering non-wrapped food if they touch the food with their hands. 
  • Ensure that the layout of the premises is designed as far as possible to minimise the risk of infection, including that it must be possible for customers, visitors and participants to maintain social distance – also at checkouts. 


The Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs (Erhvervsministeriet) has collaborated with the relevant authorities, business and industry and the labour market parties to prepare guidelines for a careful layout of restaurants, cafes, amusement parks, hotels, holiday resorts etc. in light of the outbreak of COVID-19 (guidelines agreed by the sector partnership). The recommended guidelines have been uploaded to virksomhedsguiden.dk

Yes. Pubs, wine bars, cocktail bars etc. are allowed to stay open from 5.00 am to 10.00 pm. 

If they stay open, they must:

 

  • Ensure a free floor area of at least four square metres for each customer, visitor or participant. However, at premises where customers, visitors or participants are mainly seated, one customer, visitor or participant is allowed for each two square metres of floor area. 
  • Ensure that bars and similar establishments display information posters at entrance doors stating the maximum number of people allowed at the premises. Information posters must also be displayed in or at the premises to remind people of the requirement to wear a face mask or shield and of the risk that they can be asked to leave.
  • Ensure that all employees and other persons admitted to the premises observe the Danish Health Authority's recommendations on good hygiene and appropriate conduct.
  • Display information posters telling people with symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate themselves at home.
  • Display information posters on good hygiene and appropriate conduct in public spaces. 
  • Make water and soap and/or hand sanitizer (with an alcohol concentration of at least 70%) available to customers, visitors and participants. 
  • Ensure that employees and other persons admitted to the premises use gloves when selling and delivering non-wrapped food if they touch the food with their hands.
  • Ensure that the layout of the premises is designed as far as possible to minimise the risk of infection, including that it must be possible for customers, visitors and participants to maintain social distance – also at checkouts. 

 

Discotheques, nightclubs and the like must still stay closed. In the assessment of whether a venue is a discotheque, a nightclub or the like falling within the scope of the temporary ban, it must be taken into account whether there are only few seats, whether there is a dance floor, whether its principal activity is not the sale of food and whether it has been granted a licence for extended opening hours. However, it is irrelevant for this assessment whether or not it is called a discotheque. 

Following an assessment of the specific circumstances, a bar with only few seats, a dance floor, no sale of food and usually late-night opening hours may therefore fall within the scope of the temporary ban, whereas in light of the circumstances, a nightclub that puts chairs and tables on the dance floor and otherwise rearranges the premises to resemble a more traditional bar may open. If the venue opens, the above requirements must be observed. 

The Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs (Erhvervsministeriet) has collaborated with the relevant authorities, business and industry and the labour market parties to prepare guidelines for a careful layout of restaurants, cafes, amusement parks, hotels, holiday resorts etc. in light of the outbreak of COVID-19. The recommended guidelines have been uploaded to virksomhedsguiden.dk.

No. Discotheques, nightclubs and the like must still stay closed.

In the assessment of whether a venue is a discotheque, a nightclub or the like falling within the scope of the temporary ban, it must be taken into account whether there are only few seats, whether there is a dance floor, whether its principal activity is not the sale of food and whether it has been granted a licence for extended opening hours. However, it is irrelevant for this assessment whether or not it is called a discotheque. 

Following an assessment of the specific circumstances, a bar with only few seats, a dance floor, no sale of food and usually late-night opening hours may therefore fall within the scope of the temporary ban, whereas in light of the circumstances, a nightclub that puts chairs and tables on the dance floor and otherwise rearranges the premises to resemble a more traditional bar may open. If the venue opens, the above requirements must be observed. 

The Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs (Erhvervsministeriet) has collaborated with the relevant authorities, business and industry and the labour market parties to prepare guidelines for a careful layout of restaurants, cafes, amusement parks, hotels, holiday resorts etc. in light of the outbreak of COVID-19. The recommended guidelines have been uploaded to virksomhedsguiden.dk.

Music venues with a seated audience where visitors are mainly seated at assigned seats facing a stage, cinema screen, playing field or the like are allowed to stay open. However, a maximum of 500 people can be allowed access to the music venue at the same time. 

 

If they stay open, they must:

 

  • Ensure a free floor area of at least four square metres for each customer, visitor or participant. However, at premises where customers, visitors or participants are mainly seated, one customer, visitor or participant is allowed for each two square metres of floor area.  
  • Ensure that all employees and other persons admitted to the premises observe the Danish Health Authority's recommendations on good hygiene and appropriate conduct.
  • Display information posters telling people with symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate themselves at home.
  • Display information posters on good hygiene and appropriate conduct in public spaces.
  • Make water and soap and/or hand sanitizer (with an alcohol concentration of at least 70%) available to customers, visitors and participants to the extent possible. 
  • Ensure that employees and other persons admitted to the premises use gloves when selling and delivering non-wrapped food if they touch the food with their hands.
  • Ensure that the layout of the premises is designed as far as possible to minimise the risk of infection, including that it must be possible for customers, visitors and participants to maintain social distance – also at checkouts.

 

Music venues with a standing audience still fall within the scope of the temporary ban on staying open. 

 

Concerts can be held as drive-in events. For further details, see the Q&A on drive-in events.

If no food, drinks or tobacco is served at meeting and conference facilities, hotel lobbies etc., such venues are not considered to be establishments serving food or drinks, and there are no mandatory closing hours.

If meeting and conference facilities or hotels have a restaurant or bar as such or a dedicated restaurant or bar area at which food is served for guests, such premises or dedicated area will be considered to be an establishment serving food or drinks, which is required to close at 10.00 pm and at which people are subject to the requirement to wear a face mask or shield.

If food, drinks or tobacco is served at premises with a different main function than serving the relevant consumables, including premises such as a hotel lobby (accommodation), a computer cafe (entertainment/cultural purpose), a concert hall (cultural purpose), bingo games at a sports hall (educational/cultural purpose) and a bowling alley (entertainment), the possibility to purchase food or drinks for consumption at the premises does not independently make the premises an establishment selling food or drinks. In that case, the concert hall, lobby etc. will not have to close at 10.00 pm. However, food, drinks and tobacco cannot be sold for consumption at the premises after 10.00 pm.

It should be noted that this is the case only at premises with a different main function than serving food or drinks. Therefore, a bar or restaurant as such cannot claim that the main function of the premises is to provide a cultural programme or entertainment because sports events are shown on a giant screen in the room or because bingo games or live music is played at the premises. The same applies to shops with the dual purpose of selling products provided by customers and selling food and drinks consumed at the shop at specific chairs and tables arranged for that purpose. Such shops cannot claim either that the main purpose of the premises is to make retail sales if it is possible to consume food and drinks at the shop.
No, the restrictions apply to all establishments selling food, drinks or tobacco for consumption on-site. It is determined based on an assessment of the specific circumstances whether the venue is considered to be an establishment selling food etc.

Yes. Gambling arcades can stay open. This applies regardless of whether the gambling arcade is located in conjunction with a kiosk etc., or whether the gambling arcade is located separately.

All establishments selling food or drinks must normally stay closed from 10.00 pm to 5.00 am. This applies to both indoor and outdoor areas. 

However, sausage stands, shawarma restaurants, pizzerias etc. can sell takeaway food and non-alkoholic drinks from 10.00 pm to 5.00 am if they have the requisite licences under other relevant legislation, but during that period they cannot make their premises available to guests who want to consume food or drinks sold by the relevant restaurant or cafe. Restaurants and cafes cannot be required to remove tables and chairs between 10.00 pm and 5.00 am, but if an owner does not arrange the removal of tables and chairs or rope off or otherwise seal off the area, the owner must display signs saying that eating, drinking and smoking is prohibited at the tables of the restaurant/cafe during that period. 


Establishments selling takeaway food or drinks without offering customers the possibility to consume it on-site, whether indoors or outdoors, must observe the following directions at their premises:

 

  • Ensure a free floor area of at least four square metres for each customer or guest. 
  • Ensure that all employees and other persons admitted to the premises observe the Danish Health Authority's recommendations on good hygiene and appropriate conduct.
  • Display information posters telling people with symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate themselves at home.
  • Display information posters on good hygiene and appropriate conduct in public spaces. 
  • Make water and soap and/or hand sanitizer (with an alcohol concentration of at least 70%) available to customers. 
  • Ensure that employees and other persons admitted to the premises use gloves when selling and delivering non-wrapped food if they touch the food with their hands.
  • Ensure that the layout of the premises is designed as far as possible to minimise the risk of infection, including that it must be possible for customers and guests to maintain social distance – also at checkouts.

 

As in the case of establishments selling food and drinks, the requirement to wear face masks or shields applies in connection with the pick-up of items from a place selling only takeaway food and drinks.

 

The Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs (Erhvervsministeriet) has collaborated with the relevant authorities, business and industry and the labour market parties to prepare guidelines for a careful layout of restaurants, cafes, amusement parks, hotels, holiday resorts etc. in light of the outbreak of COVID-19. The recommended guidelines have been uploaded to virksomhedsguiden.dk.

Yes. Workplace and institution canteens can serve food to employees. This also applies in case a canteen is operated by an independent contractor. 

Workplace canteens to which only employees are admitted are not deemed to be restaurants, and such canteens do not have to close at 10.00 pm, nor does the requirement to wear a face mask or shield apply at the canteen.

However, the Danish Health Authority's recommendations must be observed. 

Canteens to which members of the public are admitted, such as canteens at museums and educational institutions and workplace canteens also open to outsiders not affiliated with the workplace, are considered to be restaurants if the food or drinks are consumed at the location. In those cases, the requirement to close at 10.00 pm and the requirement to wear a face mask or shield applies.

Yes. Hotels are allowed to stay open. 

It is normally prohibited to organise or attend events, activities etc. with more than 10 people at or in a hotel. However, up to 500 people can attend simultaneously if participants are mainly seated at assigned seats facing a stage, cinema screen, playing field or the like. 


Restaurants and cafes/dedicated restaurant or cafe areas etc. of hotels are allowed to stay open from 5.00 am to 10.00 pm. When open, such restaurants and cafes must observe the rules applicable to establishments selling food or drinks, including the requirement to wear a face mask or shield. 

From 10.00 pm to 5.00 am, the establishments are allowed to sell takeaway food or drinks if they have the requisite licences under other relevant legislation. 

All hotel facilities open to the public must also:

 
  • Ensure a free floor area of at least four square metres for each customer, visitor or participant. However, at premises where customers, visitors or participants are mainly seated, one customer, visitor or participant is allowed for each two square metres of floor area. 
  • Restaurants, bars and similar establishments must display information posters at entrance doors stating the maximum number of people allowed at the premises. Information posters must also be displayed in or at the premises to remind people of the requirement to wear a face mask or shield and of the risk that they can be asked to leave.
  • Ensure that all employees and other persons admitted to the premises observe the Danish Health Authority's recommendations on good hygiene and appropriate conduct.
  • Display information posters telling people with symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate themselves at home.
  • Display information posters on good hygiene and appropriate conduct in public spaces.
  • Make water and soap and/or hand sanitizer (with an alcohol concentration of at least 70%) available to customers, visitors and participants. 
  • Ensure that employees and other persons admitted to the premises use gloves when selling and delivering non-wrapped food if they touch the food with their hands. 
  • Change the layout of premises to ensure social distancing between customers, visitors and participants – also at checkouts.

 

According to the Government's announcement, the ban on gatherings of more than 10 people applies from 26 October 2020 to 13 December 2020.