Birmingham has received just one application for extended pub opening hours under relaxed licensing laws introduced three weeks ago.
The city's head of licensing is urging bars and clubs who want to open later to submit applications as soon as possible as only Bar 110, on Colmore Row, has applied to take advantage of new rules which came into force on February 7.
In its application, submitted last Wednesday, the bar and restaurant applied to extend its hours from 2am to 4am.
Birmingham City Council presently handles about 640 applications annually for entertainment licences, but is expecting that figure to increase to 4,000 over the next year as it now issues drink licences as well.
Licensing committee chairman, Coun David Osborne, introduced urgent measures which will see the frequency of licensing committee meetings increasing from once a week to once a day and £150,000 being spent to take on extra licensing officers.
He now fears that all the applications could come at once. Coun Osborne (Lib Dem South Yardley) said: "I would call on all bar owners to act responsibly because we do not want to deal with all these applications at the same time.
"If we have too many applications, we would have to automatically refuse some, which would mean them going back to where we least want them to go, the magistrates courts."
All landlords who want to change their current opening hours, or whose licences have received opposing ' representations' from bodies such as the police or fire service, have to go to the council's licensing committee. All others are processed by council officers.
A council licensing spokeswoman said many landlords were taking their time with applications because the new rules are complicated.