For many of us, ANZAC Day is one of the few days we take to really stop. Many shops aren’t open and if you’ve woken up early to experience a dawn service, an afternoon nap is usually in order.

As business owners and managers, you may be wondering whether businesses close because they want to, or they have to. We’ve summarised the requirements for Queensland businesses below.


In Queensland, there are effectively 3 types of retail shops; exempt shops, which also includes the sub-category of independent retail shops, and non-exempt shops. Exempt shops are defined under the Trading (Allowable Hours) Act 1990 and represent specific retail business types, i.e.

  • antique shop
  • art gallery or arts and crafts shop
  • aquarium, aquarium accessories or pet shop
  • bait and tackle or marine shop
  • bookseller’s or newsagent’s shop
  • bread, cake or pastry shop
  • butcher’s shop

and many more.


These businesses can open 24/7, 365 days a year. Despite this allowance, many of these small businesses still choose to close on ANZAC Day, for various reasons.


The sub-category of exempt shops, independent retail shops, must meet these specific criteria:

  • The business is run by an individual, partnership or a proprietary company (does not include a public company or related corporation).
  • There are no more than 30 people, including the owner, engaged in the shop at any one time.
  • There are no more than 100 people engaged by the owner in all shops throughout Queensland at any one time.
  • The business is not conducted within a non-exempt shop or part thereof.


Independent retail shops cannot open before 1pm on ANZAC Day, except in the case of independent retail shops that predominantly sell food or groceries, such as the local corner store chains, which have no restrictions.


All other retail businesses then fall into the category of non-exempt shops, such as Coles and Woolworths and other large retailers. For ANZAC Day, this also includes factories and offices. These businesses are required to be closed for the entire day on ANZAC Day, with some notable exceptions:

  • racing venues (horses or greyhounds)
  • offices or agencies of TAB (Qld)
  • premises licensed under the Liquor Act 1992 (Qld) or Wine Industry Act 1994(Qld) (see Anzac Day trading hours for licensed premises)
  • real estate offices, which may open only for the purpose of rental transactions and must not sell real estate or conduct open house inspections
  • premises engaged in:
    • printing, publishing and distributing newspapers
    • manufacturing, distributing or supplying gas, electricity or water
    • necessary continuous manufacturing or mining
    • essential services
    • supplying of milk
    • manufacturing bread and the preparation of food in restaurants, cafes, pastry cook and hot takeaway food kitchens.


Cinemas, amusement parks, sporting events and other places of amusement are generally not permitted to open until 1.30pm.


If you need help understanding these requirements for your business, give our Workplace Partners a call today!


Source: Business Queensland