If you’ve ever considered joining the Australian workforce then one option you’ve probably considered is bartending or hospitality. In Australia though, there are some requirements you’ll need before pouring your first beer and one of them is an RSA certificate.
The RSA stands for responsible serving of alcohol and is a critical certificate for anyone seeking employment as a bartender or in any other field within hospitality. This article will provide answers to commonly asked questions about getting your RSA so you can join Australia’s bustling bar scene.
What is an RSA Certificate and Why is it Necessary to Work in Hospitality?
The RSA is mandatory for everyone working in hospitality positions that involve serving alcoholic beverages. It is also not limited to bars but also establishments that sell alcohol such as bottle shops, so essentially anything that is licenced to sell alcohol.
They are used to certify that individuals providing alcohol have undergone adequate training to serve beverages in a way that is safe, to prevent underage drinking and encourage responsible alcohol consumption.
How Do I get an RSA Certificate in Australia?
Now that you understand the importance of getting an RSA to serve alcoholic beverages in Australia, you will need to go through the necessary steps to get the certificate. Those who want the certificate will need to complete a course that covers topics such as the legal responsibilities of serving alcohol, identifying intoxication and minimizing alcohol-related harm.
There are several ways to complete the course, including online classes or in-person training sessions. The course is generally short in nature and typically completed within one day in which comprises the theory aspect, a practice test and assesments.
How long does an RSA Certificate Last and When Should I Renew it?
The certificate’s validity will vary from state to state but will last a few years, giving you some time to work in the industry before you’ll need a refresher course. It’s important to regularly check the expiration date so it remains valid during your time working in the hospitality industry.
The RSA certificate will last up to 3 years until it is invalid. If the current validity still applied you will need to attend a refresher course. If your certificate has expired, you can still reapply and update your RSA certification.
New South Wales
In New South Wales, RSA certificates are valid for 5 years, which compared to Victoria is a longer timeframe. Those looking to renew their certificates will need to attend a refresher course and reapply for the certificate through a certified training provider.
The RSA certificate will be valid for 3 years and require participants to complete an online assessment every 3 years to renew the certificate. These assessments shouldn’t take more than a few hours to complete and usually help applicants get updated on any new licencing rules.
Adelaide is unique in that its RSA certificates don’t expire. The certificates need to be done in person at an accredited institution to be valid and include theory and assessment components. However, it is recommended that those serving alcohol in South Australia keep updated with licensing regulations.
Can I Get an RSA if I’m Under 18 Years Old?
Yes, anyone can attend the training to receive the certification if they are at least 17 years old but you won’t be able to serve alcohol until you’ve turned 18 years old. It is a legal requirement in Australia for employees to be at least 18 years of age in order to serve alcoholic beverages.
Don’t let this discourage you though, as there’s no harm in being prepared early so you can jump straight into the workforce when ready.
Regardless of where you plan on working in hospitality in Australia, it’s important that you obtain an RSA Certificate to be eligible while providing alcoholic beverages to customers. Following these steps should help you stay up to date with your certification so you can work in hospitality without having to worry about its validity. All the best.