Wairarapa rugby fans may be unable to enjoy a pint at their favourite bar for the majority of Rugby World Cup games this year.

Of the 48 matches in the Rugby World Cup, 34 of these will kick off outside of Wairarapa venues' licensed hours due to the time zone difference between New Zealand and host country, England.

The permitted on-licensed venue hours in Wairarapa, 8am-1am, will not cover a majority of matches the All Blacks may play in, including the World Cup Final which begins at 5am on November 1.

Masterton District Council spokesman Sam Rossiter-Stead urged Wairarapa venues to register their interest in screening Rugby World Cup matches outside of licensed hours as soon as possible.


"We have contacted all of the relevant licensed premises in Masterton advising them they will need to apply for a special licence for these games," he said.

"At this time the Masterton District Licensing Committee has not received any applications or queries regarding this.

"Special licence applications are usually required to be lodged at least 20 working days prior to the date of the event, but we would urge people to apply as soon as possible for Rugby World Cup games, as there could be a lengthy process required to hear the applications, involving a number of different agencies."

Kuripuni Bar, Farriers, and Horse and Hound were all contacted and are all still reviewing the processes involved in screening matches outside of licensed hours.

Staff at Pukemanu in Martinborough said they had no plans to screen matches outside of licensed hours, which appears to be a general consensus for most Wairarapa venues.

Murray Buchanan from South Wairarapa District Council said they had not received any applications for special licences for the rugby world cup.

People on the Wairarapa Times-Age Facebook page have expressed a mixed opinion on whether venues should apply for a special licence to screen the matches, with the point being made that fans can watch the games from home on Sky.

All Blacks supporter Jordan McDowall, however, thought Wairarapa venues should take the initiative to provide fans with a place to celebrate victories together.


"I think some bars should be open. It will be great revenue for them, especially the final games," he said.

"As long as they stick to policy, alcohol laws etc ... and they have to screen the games.

"Lots of other places will be doing it around the country - why not Masterton? Or are we too conservative again?"

Facebook user Jax Manu Waight suggested that even cafes should jump on board with public screenings of the games.

"If no alcohol is served, open up your doors," she said.

"Cafes should jump on board. I would get tickets to a breakfast buffet plus game, would be awesome."