Horeca (hotel, restaurant and catering sector)

This page was last modified on 02-05-2016

In order to operate a cafe/ tearoom, restaurant or accommodation establishment, the manager must hold a business permit.

The business permit is granted to the business (either the manager operating under his own name, or the company he runs) if:

  • the manager meets the requirements in terms of qualification and professional integrity;
  • and the business has a fixed physical establishment in Luxembourg (no so-called 'letterbox companies').

Compliance with these provisions is verified by the General Directorate for SMEs and Entrepreneurship at the time the application for a business permit is submitted.

After the business permit has been obtained and depending on the legal business structure chosen, the establishment has to proceed with various registrations/affiliations before it can begin its activity.

Traders from the Horeca sector who are legally established on the territory of the Swiss Confederation or in a country of the European Economic Area (EEA) may provide temporary and occasional services in Luxembourg without business permit and without giving prior notification.

Forms / Online services

Carry out your procedure:

  • With an online service

    • Business permit - online application
    • Extract from the criminal record of a natural person - online service
  • By downloading a form

Who is concerned

The activities of traders running a licensed or unlicensed establishment (café, tearoom) include:

  • selling hot and cold drinks to be consumed on the premises or for take away;
  • incidental selling of hot dishes to be consumed on the premises or for take away;
  • where applicable, selling various other products (sweets and candy, crisps, tobacco products, etc.).

The activites of traders who are operating an eating establishment (restaurant) include:

  • selling hot dishes to be consumed on the premises, for take away or delivery to the end-consumer;
  • selling alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks on the premises or for take away;
  • where applicable, selling various other products (tobacco products, sweets and candy, postcards, souvenirs, etc.).

The activities of traders operating an accommodation establishment (hotel, boarding house) include:

  • leasing furnished rooms;
  • serving breakfast, hot dishes and meals on the premises to their lodgers;
  • selling alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks on the premises or to take away;
  • where applicable, selling various other products to the lodgers of the rooms (toiletries, sweets and candy, tobacco products, postcards, souvenirs, etc.).

The activities of traders in the Horeca sector do not include delicatessen and related catering services (traiteur), which are subject to a business permit for a main craft activity.

Caterers in the Swiss Confederation (CH) or in a country of the European Economic Area (EEA) do not need a business permit in order to occasionally and temporarily provide services in Luxembourg, provided they notify the General Directorate for SMEs and Entrepreneurship.

Prerequisites

In order to justify the qualifications for access to a profession in the Horeca sector, applicants must have:

  • the qualifications required to become a trader, i.e.:
    • either a vocational diploma (diplôme d'aptitude professionnelle - DAP) or similar (vocational skills certificate - CATP, CAP, etc.) or higher (secondary school graduation diploma, Bachelor's degree, etc.);
    • or any professional experience of at least 3 years in an EU Member State;
    • or a certificate of successful completion of the final exam which completes the course for access to the profession of trader organised by the Chamber of Commerce via the House of Training or any other similar training course provided in another EU Member State;
    • or a copy of a previously held business permit;
  • a certificate of successful completion of the final exam which completes the course for access to professions in the Horeca sector organised by the Chamber of Commerce through the House of Training;
    This supplementary training which is specific to the Horeca sector in Luxembourg (or a training deemed equivalent) is mandatory for all applicants to the profession.

Preliminary steps

If the manager intends to operate an establishment where some of the activities/installations have not yet been authorised, he must apply for an operating permit for classified establishments.

Examples of activities/installations that are subject to authorisation:
  • restaurants with more than 50 seats;
  • hotels;
  • holiday villages and resort hotels;
  • professional kitchens equipped to serve more than 150 hot meals per day (other than restaurant kitchens as above);
  • covered parking spaces and parking garages for clients;
  • elevators, etc.

The application procedure for operating permits for classified establishments may take several months.

It is therefore recommended to submit the application at the very beginning of the project.

How to proceed

Business permit application in Luxembourg

Documentary proof of qualification

In order to provide proof of professional qualification as a trader in the Horeca sector, business managers must attach the following to their business permit application:

  • a copy of their certificate of successful completion of the training course 'Accès aux professions de l'Horeca' (Access to professions in the Horeca sector) provided by the House of Training (or an equivalent training course);
  • as well as a copy of their other certificates or diplomas (it is advisable to attach certified true copies for certificates and diplomas issued by bodies outside the EU);
  • or, in the case of professional experience in another country of the European Union:
  • or, in the case of professional experience in Luxembourg:
  • where applicable, proof of the recognition of professional qualification by the department for the recognition of diplomas.

Documents attesting to professional integrity

In order to provide proof of professional integrity, applicants must attach the following to their business permit application:

  • applicants residing in Luxembourg for more than 10 years:
  • applicants who do not reside in Luxembourg or have been residing in the country for less than 10 years:
    • an affidavit (sworn statement);
    • a declaration of non-bankruptcy made before a notary;
    • an extract from the criminal record or equivalent issued by the State in which the applicant has resided during the 10 years prior to the application.

Other documents to be submitted with the application

The following documents must be submitted together with the business permit application:

  • a copy of the manager's identity card;
  • proof of payment of stamp duty (droit de chancellerie), in the form of:
    • either a tax stamp, value EUR 24, purchased at the Indirect Tax Authority (AED) ;
    • or the proof of payment of EUR 24 into the IBAN account LU09 1111 7026 5281 0000, BIC code: CCPLLULL of the Diekirch Revenue Office, with the following communication: 'autorisation de commerce';
  • in the event of an application for a business (legal person), the company's articles of association which have been filed with the Trade and Companies Register.

In the event of an online application for a business permit via MyGuichet (with a Luxtrust card), the system will automatically generate the list of supporting documents to be attached to the application and which may vary depending on the data entered by the applicant.

Managers who run their business as a sole proprietorship can collect their business permit at the Joint Social Security Centre (CCSS).

Managers who run their business as a company (partnership / capital company) will receive their business permit by post.

Registrations/affiliations depending on the legal form of the company

After the business manager has received the business permit, he must carry out various administrative procedures which depend on the legal form of business chosen.

Sole proprietorship

In the case of a sole proprietorship, the manager has to:

Partnerships (SENC, SECS)

In the case of a partnership (SECS, SENC), the business manager has to:

Capital companies (SA, SARL, SECA, SE)

In the case of a capital company (SA, SARL, SECA, SE), the managers have to:

Alcohol license / Hotel status

Whatever the legal form of the company, the manager has to apply for different authorisations:

Sale of alcohol to be consumed on the premises

Where the business manager intends to sell alcoholic beverages, the following are necessary:

As the number of licences to sell and serve alcohol in Luxembourg is limited, certain intermediaries (namely breweries) offer to make available their licence against a lease contract with an alcohol supply contract.

Business managers who sell beverages to be consumed on the premises are required to comply with the obligations concerning the management of a drinking establishment.

Hotels, motels, inns and restaurants

In order to use certain names such as "hotel", "motel", "pension de famille" (boarding house), "auberge" (inn) or "restaurant", the business manager must have the hotel status.

Moreover, managers of such establishments who offer accommodation services to travelers (including the temporary lease of rooms above a café) must request access to the electronic traveler accommodation form system in order to declare the clients staying in the establishment.

Who to contact

Ministry of the Economy

B.P. 535 - L-2937 - Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 247-74700
Fax: (+352) 247-74701
Email info.pme@eco.etat.lu

Opening hours
The telephone helpline is open Monday to Friday, from 13.00 to 17.00 (not on public holidays).
14, rue Erasme
L-1468 - Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 42 39 39 - 330
Email info@houseofentrepreneurship.lu

Opening hours
from 8.30 to 17.30
7, rue Alcide de Gasperi
L-1615 - Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 42 13 55-1
Fax: (+352) 42 13 55-299
Email horesca@pt.lu