Your questions answered: Which COVID-19 restrictions are easing

Save articles for later

Add articles to your saved list and come back to them any time.

Melbourne had its first day with zero new cases of the coronavirus since June on Monday, and the city will get a taste of well-earned freedoms this week.

Premier Daniel Andrews has pressed ahead with plans to loosen the restrictions from 11.59pm on Tuesday.



Masks will still be mandatory, except in certain circumstances, and strict COVID-19 rules will remain in place to keep case numbers low.

There's a lot of information to process. Here, we've tried to answer some of your questions.

Can I go to the beautician?

Beauty parlours and tattooists will open from Wednesday, so long as the customer can wear a face mask at all times. That means manicures, pedicures and body waxing is back on – unless you need to take your mask off. Hairdressers have been open for a week already.

Can I go to church?

You can. From Wednesday, up to 10 people plus one faith leader will be allowed at indoor religious gatherings. Outdoors, up to 20 people will be allowed to gather. Those caps will increase again from November 9.

Ten wedding guests will now be allowed at weddings, in addition to the happy couple, their witnesses, celebrant and photographer. Funerals will be capped at 20 mourners, not including infants under 12 months old. The limits will lift again on November 9.

Can I go out for dinner?

Yes! Groups of up to 10 people will be able to dine both indoors and out from Wednesday, seated 1.5 metres away from other groups with no more than one person per four square metres. There will be a cap of 10 people per space indoors, with no more than 20 patrons total indoors.

We've spoken a lot about outdoor dining in the lead up to this announcement. Bars and restaurants will be able to seat 50 people outdoors, with one person taking up two square metres.

Live music will be permitted outdoors, too, but they will be included as patrons and must stand two metres apart. Musicians will also need to wear a mask except in limited circumstances. From November 9, densities will increase to allow up to 40 people indoors (with still no more than 10 people per space) and 70 patrons outside.

Can I go to the pub to watch the Melbourne Cup?

Yes. By the time the Melbourne Cup comes around next Tuesday, November 3, the city will have been dining out for six days. The same density restrictions will be in place.

Can I go to the movies?

No, not yet sadly. Outdoor drive-in cinemas will be able to operate, though, with no seating provided to guests.

How far can I go from my home?

Metro Melbourne is still bound by the 25-kilometre rule. But from November 9, Mr Andrews said Victoria will once again "become one". The "ring of steel" will be removed and the people will be able to freely move between the regions and the city.

Can I go to the beach?

That all depends on where you live. As above, Melbourne is still bound by the 25-kilometre limit. Much of the city will at least reach the bay and from November 9 you'll be free to take a dip anywhere in Victoria.

Can I visit my family?

We don't yet know what the rules will be to visit family in the home. Currently, home visits are still banned except for single-person bubbles and intimate partners. Mr Andrews said he would make more announcements about that on Tuesday and that those rules will roll out at at midnight with the rest of the changes.

What about at the park?

Outdoor gatherings at the park or beaches are allowed, with no more than 10 people. From Wednesday, the two-household cap will be lifted and those 10 people can come from as many households as you like.

More than 10 people will also be allowed to gather outdoors if they are all from the same household.

Can I go to the gym?

Not quite. Indoor gyms will be allowed to reopen from November 9 with no more than 10 people per space or class. The entire venue will be capped to host no more than 20 people at a time, with each person needing eight square metres.

From this Wednesday, up to 10 people can join an outdoor training session. Adults will be allowed to play non-contact community sport outdoors with as many people as is required to play the sport, so long as they remain 1.5 metres away. For example, a game of cricket could go ahead from Wednesday, with two teams of 11 players and the necessary umpire or coaches.

As for kids, 20 children will be able to play sports indoors if they can keep 1.5 metres away from one another from November 9. Children will be allowed to play contact sports outdoors from the same date. Only one parent or guardian per child will be able to supervise at a time.

I live near an indoor pool. Can I go?

Indoor pools have only been open for one-on-one hydrotherapy sessions with a health profession. That will be expanded on November 9 and will be capped at 20 swimmers at a time.

Up to 50 swimmers will be able to take a dip at outdoor pools from the same date.

Can I go the library?

You can drop off your books. And from November 9, libraries will be able to welcome 20 people indoors at a time or 10 people per room. Outdoor activities will be permitted in groups of 10 from this Wednesday.

I'm finishing school, can I have a graduation ceremony?

Grades 6 and 12 will be able to go to their school graduations for staff and students from Wednesday, though no guests will be allowed.

Read the Department of Health and Human Services’ frequently asked questions here.

Most Viewed in Politics

Source: Read Full Article