Liquor and Gaming NSW > Liquor > Serving alcohol responsibly

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Stan​​​dard drink and alcohol guidelines

Drinking alcohol can affect your body and your mind. These guidelines are to help lower the risk of alcohol-related harm.

What is a standard drink?

A standard drink contains 10 grams of alcohol regardless of the size of the container (glass, bottle, can) or type of alcohol (beer, wine, spirit).

375ml can or bottle full-strength beer = 1.4 standard drinks
150ml wine = 1.4 standard drinks
30 ml spirits = 1 standard drink.

How much can I drink?

For most healthy adults, these are the guidelines:

  • Up to 2 standard drinks a day cuts the risk of alcohol-related disease or harm over a lifetime.
  • More than 4 standard drinks on a single occasion and you risk alcohol-related injury. 

Intoxication guidelines

The NSW liquor laws state that you cannot sell and supply alcohol to intoxicated persons.

Licensees must ensure they:

  • serve alcohol responsibly to help minimise alcohol-related harm
  • to prevent intoxication from occurring on their premises
  • provide a safe venue for patrons and staff.

Or else they can face:

  • fines
  • higher licence fees
  • suspension or cancellation of a licence.

​​GL4003 Intoxication guidelines​​ (PDF, 193KB) help you decide whether someone is intoxicated or not.

GL4002 Prevention of intoxication on licensed premises guidelines​​(PDF, 193KB) - provide practical steps for licensees to manage the risk of intoxication on their premises.

The NSW Liquor Act 2007 states that a person is intoxicated if:

  • the person’s speech, balance, co-ordination or behaviour is noticeably affected, and
  • it is reasonable in the circumstances to believe that the affected speech, balance, co-ordination or behaviour is the result of the consumption of liquor.​