Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

A Ship Master License allows the holder to serve alcoholic beverages on a passenger ship.
Once an application is submitted via our eLicensing system, the typical turnaround time is 4 – 6 weeks.

Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission

The Details   of Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

What you need   for Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

To apply for a Ship Master License pursuant to M.G.L. c. 138, § 13 you will need electronic copies of the documents listed below.

Required Documents for ALL new Ship Master licenses:

  • Coast Guard Certificate for the ship being licensed.
  • Personal Information Form for anyone with Beneficial or Financial Interest in this license (any person or business entity with ownership).
  • Manager Information Form for each manager of record. There must be one manager of record per ship.
  • CORI Release Form for the liquor license manager.
  • Proof of Citizenship for the liquor license manager. Any one of the following is acceptable: US Passport, US Passport Card, Birth Certificate, Voter Registration or Naturalization Papers.
  • Lease / Occupancy Documents for each proposed ship. If you own the ship in question, you must provide proof of ownership.
  • Security Plan for the proposed ship. This plan indicates what the policies and procedures are to card patrons and prevent patrons from being overserved.
  • Floor Plan (Deck Plan) for the proposed ship to be licensed.
  • Financial Statement and Documents for the proposed transaction.

In addition

    If entity applying is a business:

  • Vote of the Corporate Board or LLC is required authorizing any transaction you are applying for.
  • Business Structure Documents: Articles of Organization, Partnership Agreement, Bankruptcy Documents, Estate Documents, Trust Documents or Business Certificate, are required depending on your corporate structure.

    If Pledging license/stock/beneficial interest/inventory, the following is required:

Fees   for Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

Name Fee Unit
Ship Master License $500 each

How to apply   Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

To apply for this license, please create an account on our eLicensing and ePermitting Portal.

Please review the information below:

Technical Requirements:

Below is the list of supported browser versions that provide the best user experience for the online application:

  • Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer 10

  • Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer 11

  • Firefox 29

  • Safari 6

  • Google Chrome 34

  • Opera 21

Although you may find that your current version also works, it may not support all functions.

To use the system you must first create a user name and password. User guides on this topic and other helpful information about the eLicensing and ePermitting Portal can be found here.

For technical assistance:
Please call the ePLACE Help Desk Team at (844) 733-7522 between the hours of 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM Monday-Friday, with the exception of all Commonwealth and Federal observed holidays.

Next steps   for Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

Processing Time

Please allow 4-6 weeks for the application to be processed. If there is any information missing, a licensing staff member or investigator will reach out to you directly.

If you would like to check on the status of your application, please contact a licensing staff member.

More info   for Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

  • Ship Masters can only purchase from licensed Massachusetts Wholesalers or Ship Chandlers.
  • No more than two drinks shall be sold, delivered, or in possession of any passenger at any one time.
  • If your company has a cruise ship that stops in Massachusetts, this is the license you would apply for.
  • ABCC Regulations state that no manufacturer, importer, wholesaler, certificate of compliance holder or other Massachusetts licensee shall directly or indirectly sponsor "sponsor", promote or advertise or use its name or the trade or brand name of any alcoholic beverage in connection with any cruise or event, public or private, aboard a ship. No ship shall allow or accept funds for such sponsorship, promotion, or advertisement.

Regulations regarding serving on passenger ships can be found in 204 CMR 19.00.
These regulations include general restrictions such as:

  • All alcoholic beverages shall only be sold or delivered between 8:00 am and 12:30 am on Mondays through Saturdays and between 11:00 am and 12:30 am on Sundays.
  • No alcoholic beverages shall be sold or delivered to passengers at dockside or prior to casting off, unless the ABCC gives specific permission in writing.
  • On trips of more than two hours, alcoholic beverages shall not be sold or delivered to passengers within thirty minutes before the ship docks.

To generate a list of the most current Wholesalers, please use our General Search Function provided on our eLicensing and ePermitting portal.

Downloads   for Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

Contact   for Apply for an Alcoholic Beverages Ship Master License (ABCC)

95 Fourth Street, Suite 3 , Chelsea, MA 02150-2358
Find Your ABCC Representative ABCC Staff Directory 

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