The NSW Premier today announced the three stage roadmap to lifting restrictions. However, once again, the announcement was short on detail. So here is what we know regarding events.
Stage 1: October 11th – 70% vaccination target achieved
As previously announced venues can reopen to fully vaccinated guests with the following restrictions
- Up to 20 people can gather in outdoor settings.
- Hospitality venues can reopen subject to one person per 4sqm inside and one person per 2sqm outside, with standing while drinking permitted outside.
- Booking cap for hospitality venues of 20 people per booking (new).
- Major recreation outdoor facilities including stadiums, racecourses, theme parks and zoos can reopen with one person per 4sqm, capped at 5,000 people.
- Up to 500 people can attend ticketed and seated outdoor events.
- Indoor entertainment and information facilities including cinemas, theatres, music halls, museums and galleries can reopen with one person per 4sqm or 75 per cent fixed seated capacity.
- Up to 50 people can attend weddings and funerals.
- Masks will remain mandatory for all indoor public venues, including public transport, front-of-house hospitality, retail and business premises, on planes and at airports.
Stage 2: Expected to be October 25th – 80% vaccination target achieved
- One person per 4 sqm rule stays in place until end of November
- Up to 200 people can attend COVID Safe events
- Up to 500 people can attend ticketed and seated events (no change)
- No caps on weddings and funerals (subject to 4sqm and fully vaccinated)
- Masks will remain mandatory for all indoor premises and settings, except children under 12
Stage 3: December 1st
- Density rate increased to one person per 2 sqm indoors and outdoors for all event and entertainment venues
- Amusement centres and nightclubs can open with one person per 4 sqm.
- Weddings, funerals and places of worship – one person per 2 sqm
- Masks wearing will be mandatory while travelling on public transport, on planes and at airports, and for front-of-house hospitality workers
- Mask wearing is not required when outdoors.
- Not stated, but assumed – mask wearing indoors no longer required.
And here is what we don’t know
We still don’t know when the vaccine certificate will be linked to the NSW check-in QR code – so, it is expected that when venues open on 11th October guests will have to go through a two stage check-in, the QR code that we are used to and then to show proof of vaccination. This will mean venues will have to have additional staff in order to check both.
There is nothing in the fact sheet about limits on larger events apart from one person per 2 sqm, so we must assume this would be the limit for the likes of music concerts and festivals,
And the questions we previously asked
- When will live music be allowed in venues? (public venues and events)
- What are the guidelines for enforcing the No Vax – No Entry policy?
- Will there be spot checks to ensure everyone in the venue has complied?
- What are the penalties if a venue has not complied with capacity limits and ensuring all patrons are vaccinated?
- At 70% a venue can host an engagement party for 500 pax (at 4 sqm) but a wedding is limited to 50 pax (until that limit is lifted 2 weeks later).
- At 70% Places of worship could host say 500 pax (at 4 sqm) but a wedding or funeral is limited to 50 pax. So is a nuptial mass considered a religious ceremony (4 sqm) or a wedding (50 pax)?
The Premier was asked would a venue be shut down if visited by a positive case – she couldn’t answer.
Will QR code check-ins still be required after 1 Dec? – The Premier expects this to be likely.