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Supply of food or beverages in cinema hall is taxable as restaurant service ?

“Restaurant Service’ means supply, by way of or as part of any service, of goods, being food or any other article for human consumption or any drink, provided by a restaurant, eating joint including mess, canteen, whether for consumption on or away from the premises where such food or any other article for human consumption or drink is supplied.”


Eating joint is a wide term which includes refreshment or eating stalls/ kiosks/ counters or restaurant at a cinema also.


The cinema operator may run these refreshment or eating stalls/ kiosks/ counters or restaurant themselves or they may give it on contract to a third party. The customer may like to avail the services supplied by these refreshment/snack counters or choose not to avail these services. Further, the cinema operator can also install vending machines, or supply any other recreational service such as through coin-operated machines etc. which a customer may or may not avail.

Vide Cicrcular Circular No. 201/13/2023-GST, It is clarified that supply of food or beverages in a cinema hall is taxable as

‘restaurant service’ as long as:

a) the food or beverages are supplied by way of or as part of a service, and

b) supplied independent of the cinema exhibition service.


It is further clarified that where the sale of cinema ticket and supply of food and beverages are clubbed together, and such bundled supply satisfies the test of composite supply, the entire supply will attract GST at the rate applicable to service of exhibition of cinema, the principal supply.

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