What is it?

An outdoor dining permit allows you to put tables and chairs on the footpath outside your business for dining.

Outdoor dining permits are valid from 1 July to 30 June (or part thereof) each year.

Moving public infrastructure

When you apply for a permit, you can ask Council to move public infrastructure.

This includes:

  • litter bins
  • bench seats
  • bicycle hoops.

But you will need to show how the proposal benefits the community. You’ll also be responsible for costs associated with moving public infrastructure.

This includes relocation and reinstatement costs.

If you trade on the footpath without a valid permit, you may receive a fine.

For more details, read our Footpath Trading Guidelines, or talk to a member of our team.

Who is it suitable for?

Food businesses such as cafes and restaurants can apply for an outdoor dining permit.

Will I need more than one permit?

How many permits, licences, and registrations you need depends on your business.

Businesses running outdoor dining services often apply for:

If you think you may need more than one permit, use our Business Permit Finder to determine the permits you need.


For 2022-23, fees will be charged pro-rata from 1 November 2022.

Fees are calculated based on the precinct you operate in.

You can view maps of the different precincts below:

Council will invoice fees when we receive a complete application. A card payment fee applies.

Fees greater than $800 may be eligible for a payment plan. For more information on this, contact the Footpath Trading Unit.

Before you apply

Before you apply, it’s a good idea to read our Footpath Trading Guidelines. You can also talk to our team to go through any questions you might have.

In your application, you’ll need to confirm which furniture and structures you would like to use for your outdoor dining. These may include:

  • Tables (must be between 0.7m and 0.8m in height)
  • Chairs (must be between 0.4m and 0.5m in height)
  • Bench seats (you need to allow 0.6m per person)
  • A-Boards or advertising signs (must not exceed 1.0m in height and 0.7m in width)
  • Removable screens (must be no higher than 0.9m)
  • Umbrellas (a minimum of 2.2m from the underside of the umbrella to the footpath must be maintained)
  • In-ground sockets (compulsory for all umbrellas and some removable screens)
  • Planter boxes (must be no higher than 0.9m and no longer than 1.8m)
  • Display of goods (must be no higher than 1.2m)

When you apply

Follow these steps to apply on My Port Phillip:

Step 1. Register or log in using registration details

Step 2. Apply for a permit

Step 3. Select permit type - outdoor dining

Step 4. Address

Step 5. Lodge

Step 6. Confirmation - accept terms and conditions of use

Step 7. Summary - attach any required documents

Step 8. Payment - securely pay by credit card.

After you apply

Application fees are invoiced when a complete application is received by Council. A card payment fee applies.

Assessment time

Outdoor dining permit assessments may take 20 business days. (This is from the time you submit a complete application.)

The time required to assess your request will depend on how complex it is.

Decision process

If your permit is approved, you’ll receive:

  • a letter detailing your approval
  • an endorsed plan showing the trading zone and patron numbers.

If your application is refused or you are dissatisfied with the permit decision, you can request a review. These are considered by the City Permits Panel (PDF 253 KB).


Learn more about Council’s footpath trading guidelines.

Contact us

Footpath Trading team
Online: My Port Phillip
Email: footpathtrading@portphillip.vic.gov.au
Phone: 03 9209 6844