Caution | State of Local Emergency declared

The City has declared a State of Local Emergency to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Wear a mask and get vaccinated.

COVID-19 Information Get vaccinated

Child Care Services - business guide

Businesses operating as a child care service do not require a City of Calgary licence. They are governed by the province of Alberta. Please contact Calgary Family & Child Services at 403-297-6100 or​

Child care service business​es include:

  • Before and after-school care
  • Babysitting
  • Child care facilities
  • Day care centres
  • Pre-schools
  • Nannies and nurseries

Rules and regulations

Home-based child care

The operator of the a child care service must live in the home.

Home-based child care services can care for up to 10 children. The number of children allowed does not include the operator’s own children. Home-based child care services with six or fewer children do not require land use approval. When six to 10 children are being cared for, land use approval is required through a home-based child care class 2 application. Businesses wanting to supervise more than 10 children at a residential address are required to apply for a land use redesignation.

Land Use Bylaw

All commercial child care services require a permit to approve the business where there are more than seven children under the age of 13 years being supervised for less than 24 consecutive hours.

Home-based child care services do not require a licence or permit if there are less than six children. A home-based child care service providing supervision of up to 10 children requires a development permit to approve the business.

Note: All businesses operating in Calgary are required to register their business, obtain a business identification number (BID) or Business ID, and obtain land use approval for the business location even if it does not require a licence. Certain businesses that do not need a municipal licence may still require licensing, permits or inspections from other regulatory bodies.

Land use approval

All businesses in Calgary require land use approval. Each space in a building has its own specified, approved use that cannot be changed without an approval, permit or both. Visit home-based business or commercial-based businesses for more information, or contact our Planning Services Centre to investigate land use approval for your business.


Businesses which do not require a licence do not have an associated fee to register for a Business ID.

Fees may be required for permits that are needed to meet land use approval.

Additional information

Business ownership changes

A business licence or business ID is not transferable from one person to another or from one person's business premises to another.

Multiple premises

A business operating from more than one location requires a separate business licence for each premises.

Charitable organization

All charitable organizations must be associated with another licenced business activity. Approval must be granted by the province before applying for a municipal licence.

Businesses not eligible for a charity status:

  • Alcohol beverage sales
  • Tobacco retailer

All fundraising activity is governed by the charitable fundraising act. Charitable organizations that are only fundraising should contact Alberta Municipal Affairs, Housing and Consumer Affairs Division at 1-780-427-8044 or 1-877-427-4088.

All applicants for this licence type should first consult with the province about eligibility for this designation and register their business, prior to applying for a municipal business licence. Contact Service Alberta at 1-780-427-4088 (or toll free in Alberta only at 1-877-427-4088) for more information.

How to apply


Apply now

If you need help when completing your application Chat with us, 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Monday to Friday.

In person

Apply in person at the Planning Services Centre. To skip the line, book an appointment online.​​

Planning Services Centre

We are experiencing higher than normal volumes and longer wait times. We appreciate your patience while our agents answer your questions and review your applications.

If you are trying to reach us, please select only one method of contact for your inquiry. Multiple inquiry services at the same time can increase volumes and wait times. For applications, we encourage the use of our online system as the timelines for drop-off and online submissions are the same.

Monday - Friday* 
8 a.m. - 4:15p.m. (Mountain Time Zone)
*closed on statutory holidays

Live chat:


COVID-19 Service Changes - Application drop-off
3rd floor, Municipal building
800 Macleod Trail SE

COVID-19 updates:
COVID-19 changes to services


We do regular research with businesses to better understand the outlook and viewpoint of the business community. If you are a business owner, leader or manager, join our online business research panel, Business Perspectives.