Host an alcohol free event


Given the strong link between alcohol consumption and increased cancer risk, we encourage alcohol-free events. If you do choose to allow alcohol at your event, here's some tips for helping your guests to drink responsibly or feel comfortable if they choose not to drink.

Things to consider:

  • People may choose not to drink for a wide range of reasons, including health, religion and personal preference. Running an alcohol-free event means everyone is included!
  • Don't fundraise though the sale of alcohol. People shouldn't need to drink more to raise more.
  •  Alcohol is more typical at evening events. Try running a breakfast or morning tea function instead.
  • Find alternatives to giving alcohol as prizes or thank you gifts. Pot plants, fruit baskets and gardening tools are great presents!
  • Avoid supplying alcohol to your guests. Choose a venue with a cash bar or one that allows people to bring their own drinks if they want to.

Practical tips 

Choose lower alcohol drinks

• Include mid-strength and light beers
• Lower-alcohol wine is available; it's often branded "low joule"
• Have plenty of ice in mixed drinks
• Make lower alcohol punch and spritzers

Drinking less

• Use smaller glassware
• Choose bar service over table or cocktail-style service
• Display or serve non-alcoholic drinks in the same place as alcoholic ones (eg. in the same cooler)
• Provide food and non-alcoholic drinks first

Non-alcoholic options
Make non-alcoholic options more appealing than the alcoholic ones, try:

• Homemade iced tea and coffee
• Fancy water with fruit and herbs
• Mocktails
• Fruit punch
• Smoothies and juices
• Tea and coffee

Social lubricants

Help people relax and get to know each other by:

• Putting out games like noughts-and-crosses, connect-four and Jenga
• Setting up lawn games like croquet or bocce
• Asking trivia questions or holding quizzes to get people talking

• Remind people not to drink and drive
• Encourage car-pooling, public transport and taxis
• Provide non-alcoholic drinks for designated drivers


Download our alcohol and events fact sheet (pdf, 803kb)