Victorian lockdown restrictions have been eased further, with masks no longer required outdoors and the 25 kilometre travel limit lifted.
Starting at 11.59pm tomorrow night, businesses like gyms, indoor entertainment venues and electronic gaming can reopen in Melbourne.
Public gatherings will allow up to 20 people, while gatherings in the home are permitted to have up to two visitors in a home per day, plus dependents.
“Hospitality venues can host up to 25 people before applying the density quota, which is great for small venues,” Acting Premier James Merlino said.
“The rule that if you can work from home, you should work from home remains, but office workers will be able to return up to 50 percent, or up to 20 people, whichever is greater.”
Masks are no longer required outdoors, but remain recommended if you cannot maintain a 1.5 metres distance from others.
“Everyone must continue to wear them indoors, whether it is shopping, on a train or at a workplace,” Mr Merlino said.
Changes in regional Victoria
In regional Victoria, restrictions have been lifted further.
Five visitors are allowed inside homes, plus children.
“We want to keep regional Victoria free of this virus, which is why the public team have recommended stronger settings for metropolitan Melbourne as extra protection as we run down these remaining cases,” Mr Merlino said.
“Restaurants and cafes can open to a maximum of 300 patrons per venue for seated service,” he said.
“Smaller venues can host up to 25 people before any density quotation applies, or they can use density of two people per two square metres up to 50 patrons.
“Religious ceremonies capped at 300 for the venue. Funerals to 100 people. Weddings limited to 50 people.”
Offices in regional Victoria would be able to increase to 75 percent capacity, or 30 people, whichever is greater.
Can I travel out of Melbourne?
The 25 kilometre travel limit has been lifted, and Melburnians can now go into regional Victoria.
But there are specific rules in place to stop the virus spreading out of Melbourne itself.
Melburnians travelling to the snow will be required to get a COVID-19 test within 72 days of leaving Melbourne.
Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said ski resorts are a “high-risk environment”.
“A single case infectious on the mountain would be a potential super spreader event.
“It is essentially how it spread across Europe in March last year.
“Significant clusters have occurred because of those combinations that I have talked about – indoors, post-exertion, not wearing masks, being with strangers, and the combination of cold and humidity coming together.”
He noted significant outbreaks in US and Canadian ski resorts.
The AFL and other football codes will not as yet be able to host crowds in Melbourne itself.
But 7000 spectators will be able to attend the game in Geelong on Friday.
Only people from the Geelong area and Surf Coast will be able to attend the game, but they must be members of one of the two clubs playing.
“We will continue to work with sporting codes on future games and as we ease restrictions further,” Mr Merlino said.
“As we have done for the last number of weeks, these settings will be in place for seven days, and the public health team will review this data and options on a daily basis.”