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Victoria Covid restrictions: reopening rules for Melbourne, regional Vic, freedoms for vaccinated people – explained

·5 min read
<span>Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images</span>
Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Covid restrictions across Victoria changed from Friday 22 October, with Melbourne’s lockdown ending, after the state passed a full vaccination rate of 70%.

From Friday, in metropolitan Melbourne, there is no curfew and no more travel limits, however, travel to regional Victoria is still not permitted.

In regional Victoria, restrictions have eased further, with all students returning to school. The Victorian roadmap to freedom, updated on Sunday 17 October, can be found here.

In summary, from Friday 22 October, in metropolitan Melbourne:

  • Reasons to leave home and curfew no longer in place.

  • 10 people, including dependants, can visit a home each day.

  • 15 people can gather outdoors.

  • Pubs, clubs and entertainment venues can open to 20 fully vaccinated people indoors and 50 fully vaccinated people outdoors.

  • Funerals and weddings allow for 20 fully vaccinated people indoors and 50 fully vaccinated outdoors.

  • All students to return to school at least part-time.

  • Hairdressing and beauty salons to open for up to five fully vaccinated people at a time.

When 80% of Victoria’s adult population is fully vaccinated, which is forecast to occur in the first week of November, restrictions will ease again.

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When can I leave my house?

As of Friday 22 October, there are no restrictions on reasons to leave home and no curfew.

Can I go out at night?

Yes. The curfew for metropolitan Melbourne has been lifted.

How far can I travel from home?

For people in metropolitan Melbourne, there are no limits on the distance people can travel within the city. However travel into regional Victoria is still restricted to: shopping for essential items, care and other compassionate reasons, authorised work, and permitted study.

People in regional Victoria face no limits on travel, apart from entering Melbourne. Visitors are limited to the same reasons outlined above.

What are the rules for exercise?

In Melbourne, outdoors exercise is permitted with the minimum number of people required for training, while the vaccination rate is at 70%. In the rest of Victoria, it can return indoors for the minimum number of people required.

What are the rules for wearing face masks?

Masks must be still worn everywhere except for in your home. This includes both indoor places and outdoor areas – unless you have a medical exemption. It also applies to all workplaces and secondary schools.

In regional Victoria, masks may be removed in hairdressing and beauty salons if the service requires it.

It is recommended all primary-school-age children wear masks indoors and outside, except when at home or if an exception applies.

Can I have visitors to my house?

In Victoria you can have 10 visitors including dependents in your home a day.

Groups of up to 15 people can gather outside in Melbourne, and this is increased to 20 in regional Victoria. It is recommended visitors be fully vaccinated.

Can I travel interstate?

Each state and territory is updating guidance on travel rules individually:

What about the Victoria-NSW border bubble?

People living in border communities with NSW are able to travel without a permit.

What about if I live in Victoria, but I’m in NSW and want to return home?

Victorian residents stranded in NSW who are fully vaccinated can return home without quarantining. This also applies to non-Victorian residents who wish to come to the state from NSW. Details here.

What about public gatherings?

Groups of up to 15 people can gather outside in Melbourne, and this is increased to 20 in regional Victoria.

What is happening with schools?

All students will return at least part-time on-site in Melbourne, while in the rest of Victoria, they return full-time.

Can I dine in at a restaurant or cafe?

In Melbourne, pubs and restaurants can accept 20 fully vaccinated people indoors, and 50 outdoors.

Entertainment venues cannot host people indoors in Melbourne, but can host up to 50 vaccinated people outdoors.

In regional Victoria, pubs, clubs, and entertainment venues can have up to 30 people indoors.

This increases to 150 indoors, and 500 outdoors once 80% is reached.

People will need to provide proof of their vaccination to enter premises.

Are the shops open?

In Melbourne, essential retail, such as supermarkets and chemists, will remain open. Hairdressers and personal care venues can have up to five fully vaccinated customers. Other stores are closed until the 80% target in reached.

What about weddings, funerals and religious services?

In Melbourne, funerals and weddings can be held with 20 fully vaccinated people indoors, and 50 outdoors.

In regional Victoria, this is expanded to 30 indoors and 100 outdoors.

This increases to 150 indoors and 500 outdoors at 80%.

What about aged care and hospitals?

No visitors are allowed at aged care facilities except for limited reasons. There will be no visitors to hospitals allowed except for end of life, if you’re a partner during the birth of your child, or a parent accompanying a child.

When do I have to isolate?

For people living in Victoria, only those with Covid-19 or who are identified as a primary close contact for someone with Covid-19 will have to isolate for 14 days.

Secondary close contacts do not have to isolate or get tested unless they have symptoms.

Where a primary contact shares a household, those secondary contacts in the same household do not need to isolate, so long as the primary contact is isolating away from the rest of the household.

  • Due to the unprecedented and ongoing nature of the coronavirus outbreak, this article is regularly updated to ensure it reflects the current situation at the date of publication. Any significant corrections made to this or previous versions of the article will continue to be footnoted in line with Guardian editorial policy.

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