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Evidence of age

In NSW, patrons must be at least 18 years of age to enter a licensed venue and drink alcohol.

In line with responsible service of alcohol principles, anyone who appears to look under 25 years old needs to provide proof of age when entering a licensed venue or buying or consuming alcohol from that venue.

Currently, accepted proof of age documents include:

  • a driver or rider licence or permit issued by an Australian State or Territory or any foreign country
  • a NSW Digital Driver Licence
  • Australian or other passport
  • NSW photo card
  • proof of age card issued by a public authority of the Commonwealth or of another State or Territory for the purpose of attesting to a person's identity and age
  • Keypass (over-18) identity card issued by Australia Post.

Tips for licensed venues when checking evidence of age

It is important your venue has practices in place to assist with accepting proof of age and ID documents.

Tips for identifying a genuine proof of age document:

  • examine all ID in a well-lit area where alterations will be spotted more easily
  • don’t inspect an ID through the window face in a person's wallet – ask them to remove it
  • take the ID from the patron and take your time examining it. It is recommended you do not handle a patron's phone when presented with a NSW Digital Driver Licence.
  • make sure the ID includes a hologram or other security feature relevant to the document
  • compare the photo with the patron presenting the ID – do they match? Pay particular attention to distinguishing facial features
  • feel around the photo, birth date, and edges of the card. A card enclosed in plastic or laminate with wrinkles, bumps and air bubbles could mean the ID has been altered
  • calculate that the date of birth of the ID confirms the person is at least 18 years old.

Refer to Service NSW website for how to check the NSW Digital Driver Licence.

Remember that photo cards, driver licences, passports, and Keypass identity cards ​can be issued to persons under 18 years of age.