Over the weekend, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews unveiled the state’s highly anticipated reopening roadmap, based on vaccination milestones that will guide the transition out of lockdown.
So-called ‘Phase A’ is set to come into effect when 80% of over 16-years-olds have had at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccination. Currently, projections suggest this will happen on September 26, 2021.
Phase B will come into effect when 70% of the eligible population is fully vaccinated. Currently, that’s expected to happen on October 26, 2021.
In Metropolitan Melbourne, Phase B is when lockdown measures will end, removing restrictions on reasons to leave home, and scrapping the curfew. However, travel will still be limited to within 25km of the home.
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Face masks will also still be required indoors and outdoors.
Phase C will come into effect when 80% of the eligible population is fully vaccinated — which is projected to be around November 5, 2021.
At this point, state-wide travel will be reintroduced, along with increased allowances public and private gatherings.
Finally, Phase D will kick in when 80% of over 12s are fully vaccinated. There’s no proposed date for this yet, but at the time of writing, Victoria is set to fall in line with the national reopening roadmap.
For businesses, there was a lot of information to take in, and a lot of varying rules. So we’ve broken it down, industry by industry.
Here’s what’s changing in Metropolitan Melbourne, and when:
Hospitality businesses can offer takeaway services only.
Hospitality businesses will be able to reopen to fully-vaccinated customers, for seated, outdoor service only. A maximum of 50 customers will be allowed at a time, with a density cap of one person per four square metres.
Food courts will remain closed, except for takeaway, and masks may not be removed indoors to consume food or drink.
Food and drink businesses will be able to offer services indoors, to fully-vaccinated people, with density limits still in place.
Small venues can open to up to 25 people, before the density limit applies.
Larger venues can open to up to 150 people indoors and 500 people outdoors, with density requirements applied regardless.
At this point, nothing changes for food courts.
Nightclubs will also be able to re-open to fully vaccinated people, with a cap of 150 people inside and 500 people outside. Only seated service will be allowed.
Retail will remain closed, with the exception of essential retail and click-and-collect services.
Other retail stores can reopen for outdoor service only, as well as for click-and-collect.
All retail stores will be able to re-open, with density requirements of one person per four square metres. It does not appear customers will have to be double vaccinated in order to enter a store.
Tourism and accommodation
Accommodation businesses must remain closed, unless for permitted reasons. No new bookings may be taken.
Tour operators and transport providers must remain closed.
Accommodation providers will be able to reopen to one household group per booking, or to intimate partners or ‘bubble buddies’. It does not appear that guests will have to be fully vaccinated.
Outdoor tours, such as walking or cycling tours, can recommence with density limits and a cap of 50 people.
Tour transport, such as buses, will still not be allowed.
Accommodation providers will be able to re-open, in line with private gathering limits. Two households can form a bubble, allowing members of each to visit the other, and to travel together.
Tours can reopen to fully-vaccinated people, with an indoor capacity of 150 people, and outdoor capacity of 500 people. Density limits will still apply.
Tour transport will also reopen, with the same limits applying.
Health and fitness
The cap on outdoor personal training will lift to five people, if they are all fully vaccinated.
For people who are not fully vaccinated, groups must be limited to two people, plus the trainer.
Five people will be allowed to broadcast workouts from a gym.
Community sport will be able to restart for fully-vaccinated people, with a cap of 50 people, and density limits in place.
Guidelines have not been released regarding gyms and indoor fitness centres.
Pools, saunas, steam rooms and springs will also be able to reopen to up to 50 fully-vaccinated people, with changing rooms and all indoor facilities remaining closed.
Community sport limits will increase to up to 150 people indoors and 500 people outdoors, with density limits still in place.
Pools, saunas, steam rooms and springs will also be able to reopen to up to 150 people indoors, and 500 outdoors.
Hairdressing and beauty
Hair and beauty salons will remain closed.
Salons will be able to re-open to fully vaccinated customers, with a density requirement of one person per four square metres, and with a cap of five people at a time.
The vaccination requirement and density limits will remain, but salons will be able to cater to up to 150 people at a time.
Early childhood education and care businesses will still only be able to open for vulnerable children and children of essential workers who have no alternative options.
Early childcare centres will be able to accept children whose parents are fully vaccinated.
Early childcare centres will be able to reopen fully.
Entertainment venues will remain closed, with five people able to attend a venue to broadcast a performance.
Entertainment venues will be able to open to up to 50 fully vaccinated guests, for outdoor entertainment only.
Zoos will also be able to reopen at 25% capacity, with all indoor spaces remaining closed.
And amusement parks will be able to open to a maximum of 50 fully vaccinated people, outdoor only.
Indoor entertainment venues will be able to reopen to up to 150 fully-vaccinated guests, with density restrictions of one person per four square metres of space.
Outdoor, seated entertainment will be available to fully vaccinated people, to a maximum of 5,000 people per venue, or 25% of capacity, whichever is lower.
For outdoor, non-seated entertainment, such as zoos or other attractions, capacity limits will be lifted to 50%. Indoor spaces will still have a 150-person cap, with density restrictions in place.
For amusement parks, the outdoor capacity limit will increase to 500 people per space.
Weddings and events
Weddings will still not be permitted, with the exception of end-of-life or other compassionate reasons.
Up to 50 fully vaccinated guests will be able to attend a wedding, outdoors only.
For people who are not fully vaccinated, up to 10 guests can attend, plus the couple and anyone required to conduct the ceremony.
Up to 150 fully vaccinated people can attend a wedding indoors, with density limits in place. Up to 500 people can attend an outdoors event.
For people who are not fully vaccinated, the rules will not change at this stage.
A single household will be able to inspect a vacant property, with the agent remaining outdoors, for end-of-lease and new-purchases.
Rules for inspections will remain the same, but auctions will be able to reopen to a maximum of 50 fully vaccinated people, with a cap of 50, with density restrictions in place.
Real estate operations will be able to fully reopen to fully vaccinated people. Density limits of one person per four square metres will apply, with a cap of up to 150 people indoors and 500 people outdoors.
Working from home
While office work is not strictly an industry, the new roadmap also brings in new guidelines for returning to the office — or not, as the case may be.
Only authorised workers may leave home for work. Everyone else must continue working from home, if possible.
The rules will not change at this point.
Fully vaccinated people will be able to travel to work, however people will still be encouraged to work from home if they can.
Masks must be worn indoors, and a density limit of one person per two square metres will apply in areas not accessible to the public.
You can find the full roadmap here.