New directions has been given to reinstate the restriction for businesses to ensure all dining and drinking is for seated patrons, and provide clarity for event organisers.

From 24 July 2020:

  • All patrons in food and drink venues must be seated when eating or drinking. You can still order, pay or collect food and drinks at the bar or service counter, but you'll need to pull up a chair to drink and eat.
  • Events may operate in compliance with an Approved Industry or Site Specific Plan, in addition to a COVID SAFE Event Plan. If more than 500 people will be attending an event operating under an Industry or Site Specific Plan, the organiser must tell the local public health unit at least 10 business days before the event taking place.


This Direction aligns with Stage 3 of the government’s easing of restrictions. In Stage 3 all businesses can open, in line with the COVID Safe Framework.

All businesses may now have one person per 4 square metres on their premises. Businesses with a floor space less than 200 square metres can have one person per 2 square metres, up to 50 people at a time.

From midday 3 July 2020, this includes:

  • sport stadiums will be able to fill 50 per cent of their stadiums or seat 25,000 spectators (whichever is less)
  • concert venues, theatres and auditoriums can have up to 50 per cent capacity or one person per 4 square metres (whichever is greater)
  • museums, art galleries, libraries and historic sites can have one person per 4 square metres
  • non-therapeutic massage services and water-based spa services such as saunas and bathhouses will be able to operate
  • food courts will be able to open
  • nightclubs can operate in accordance with an Approved Plan
  • strip clubs, brothels, sex on premises venues and sole operator sex workers can operate with an Approved Plan
  • wedding ceremonies and funerals may have up to 100 people.

Those businesses that have not been required to close (e.g. grocery stores) can continue to operate as they have been.

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