Soccer fans in Ottawa will be able to enjoy a pint at bars and restaurants starting at 7 am during the FIFA World Cup.
The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario has approved the start of liquor service at all licensed establishments at 7 am from Sunday until Dec. 18.
“The extension of hours applies to all licensed areas at a licensed establishment, including the patio,” the AGCO said.
Licensed establishments are currently permitted to sell and serve alcohol starting at 9 am seven days a week.
The Registrar of the AGCO says the World Cup is a unique event.
“While temporary extensions are not normally provided for events taking place outside of the province or applicable to outdoor licensed areas, the Registrar recognizes that the FIFA World Cup 2022 is an event of international significance for many communities in Ontario and is one of the most watched sporting events in the world,” the AGCO said in a statement.
“In Ontario specifically, the tournament attracts a large and enthusiastic following within the province’s broad multicultural communities.”
The World Cup begins on Sunday with host Qatar vs. Ecuador. Games start as early as 5 am during the group stage.
Canada’s first game is Wednesday at 2 pm
Bars and restaurants can decide whether to start serving at 7 am
A municipality can object to the extension of hours in their jurisdiction, and must notify the Registrar of the AGCO in writing of their objection.
Last call at bars and restaurants remains at 2 am during the World Cup.