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Business Licenses

The City of Carlsbad requires all businesses within the limits of the city to have a valid license. Doing business in the city includes businesses based in other cities that enter Carlsbad as part of their work, such as contractors and delivery companies. It also includes businesses that are located in Carlsbad but may not have customers in Carlsbad. Even companies with a temporary presence require a business license. Short-term vacation rental operators need a business licenses and a short-term vacation rental permitFood trucks and sidewalk vendors require a vending equipment permit.

You may apply for a business license online, by mail or in person.  The current processing time is 3 to 4 weeks.  Please do not submit multiple applications or payments.  

Call the business license office at 760-602-2495 for additional information.

Business License Customer Access Portal

Apply for a Business License

Please review the city's business license FAQ, required information for business licensesreal estate sign information (for realtors) and tips prior to applying for a business license.

Renew Business License Online

Search for Existing Businesses

  • Search for businesses that have a license in the City of Carlsbad. (When you get to the page, go to Business License Search.)

Permit Applications for Business Licenses

Entertainment License Application

  • In Person or by Mail (download application).  For questions regarding an Entertainment License, please contact the Community Development Department at 760-602-2774.