Your guide to Victoria’s latest COVID lockdown rules

Woman walking with mask on.

RACV Staff

Posted September 16, 2021


Outdoor recreation and other restrictions will be eased early from 11.59 pm on 16 September as Victorian hits its target of 70 per cent of residents having received their first vaccine dose.

Easings include allowing limited outdoor gatherings such as picnics, the five-kilometre movement restriction expanding to 10 kilometres, outdoor gyms and skate parks reopening and Victorians being able to exercise for four hours per day instead of two.

On 17 September, there will be some easing of restrictions, including:

  • The 5km travel limit for shopping and exercise will be expanded to 10km
  • Outdoor gatherings to socialise with one other person - and if you are all fully vaccinated, up to five adults (plus dependents) from two households
  • The daily exercise limit will be expanded from two to four hours
  • Communal gym equipment and skate parks will reopen
  • Outdoor personal training will be allowed with up to two people plus the trainer
  • Childminding for school-aged children will be allowed
  • Private inspections of unoccupied premises for a new purchase or end of a lease will be permitted
  • Construction sites will be able to increase to 50 per cent of their capacity where 90 per cent of their workforce have received at least one vaccine dose

Construction workers will need to show evidence of having received their first dose to their employer by 11:59 pm on Thursday 23 September to continue working.

Other lockdown restrictions, including the curfew, will still remain in Ballarat and Melbourne, with a plan for the road out of lockdown to be announced on Sunday 19 September.  

In regional Victoria (not including Ballarat), the 5km rule has been scrapped, and retail, restaurants and cafes can open with density limits. Schools are also open for students in Prep - Grade 2 and Year 12 students. 

Single parents in Melbourne and Ballarat have access to childcare alongside essential workers, while border rules remain tightened between metro and regional areas and between Victoria and New South Wales. 

There are now six reasons to leave home:

  • To shop for necessary goods and services
  • Caregiving, including medical care
  • Exercise up to four hours with one other person in your 10km bubble
  • Outdoor recreation (limited to four hours) outdoor with another person (or five from two households when you have had one vaccination)
  •  Authorised worker with a permit or permitted education
  • To get a Covid-19 test or vaccination

The 10-kilometre travel limit also remains in place. 

The Chief Health Officer has also recommended primary-school-age children wear masks, but it is not mandatory. 

Tighter work permit rules and rules on public alcohol consumption remain in place. People can exercise with one other person, but not with their entire household (unless they are dependants).

If anyone living in a Victorian town on the border of NSW or South Australia needs to cross the border, they must apply for a permit.


Current border closures and zones

Victoria's border with New South Wales, and the ACT, is effectively closed. Only authorised workers, those with an exemption, or those in certain cross-border communities will be permitted to cross the border. Residents will need a Specified Worker Permit, transit permit or an exemption to enter Victoria.

  • The safe travel zone between Australia and New Zealand is currently suspended. The country is currently listed as a red zone. 
  • NSW is listed as an extreme risk zone. 
  • ACT is an extreme risk zone.
  • Queensland, South Australia, Northern Territory, Western Australia and Tasmania are green zones.

You can access more details about zones and border entry permits here. 

Victorians are eligible for red zone permits, but conditions apply, and you must get tested and quarantine at home for 14 days upon their arrival.

These are the latest Victorian coronavirus restrictions on what you can and cannot do.

Latest lockdown rules for Victoria

Victoria's current COVID-19 rules

Victoria's current COVID-19 rules

Metropolitan Melbourne and Ballarat

Regional Victoria

Leaving home

There are only six reasons to leave your home:

- For food and essentials (no further than 10kms from your home unless facilities are unavailable) 

- For exercise (up to 4 hours a day, no more than 10kms from your home) 

- For care and caregiving

- For work as an authorised worker with a permit

-To socialise with one other person plus dependants if they cannot be left unattended. Up to five adults from two households may gather to socialise or exercise if everyone over 18 has had two doses. 

- To get vaccinated or Covid-19 tested

Stay at home orders are lifted within regional Victoria (excluding Ballarat). 

 

Masks

Masks must be carried at all times and be worn indoors and outdoors except at home or if an exemption applies. You may not remove your mask to consume alcohol outdoors.  

 

It is recommended, but not mandatory that primary school-age children also wear masks.

Masks must be carried at all times and be worn indoors and outdoors except at home or if an exemption applies. You may not remove your mask to consume alcohol outdoors.  

 

It is recommended, but not mandatory that primary school-age children also wear masks.

Travel

You can only travel 10 km from your home (other than for shopping if required or work as an authorised worker or construction) as of 11.59 pm on 16 September. 

 

People visiting an intimate partner or "singles bubble" may travel further.

 

A curfew applies in Greater Melbourne between 9 pm and 5 am. 

 

Check border controls for each state before travelling interstate.

Intrastate travel is permitted within regional Victoria, with the exception of Ballarat who is under the same restrictions as Melbourne.

 

Movement between metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria is restricted to:
- Necessary goods and services
- Care or compassionate reasons (including bubbles/intimate partner)
- Authorised work and education
- Other specified reasions (eg: moving home)

-Getting a COVID-19 vaccination if the appointment is at an adjacent LGA

 

Check border controls for each state before travelling interstate.

 

Tour transport open with up to 10 people per vehicle. 

Private gatherings

Private gatherings are not permitted in the home. Intimate partner/single bubble visits are allowed.

Private gatherings are not permitted in the home. Intimate partner/single bubble visits are allowed.

 

Public gatherings

Permitted to socialise with one other person - and if you are all fully vaccinated, up to five adults (plus dependents) from two households.

 

Also permitted for personal training for two people plus the trainer.

 

The radius will expand to 10km, and Victorians can exercise/socialise for up to four hours.

Public gatherings are permitted for up to 10 people.

Hospitality

Cafes, pubs, bars and restaurants can offer take-away only. 

Open for seated service with maximum 20 people outdoors and 10 people indoors subject to density limits.

 

Food courts open for takeaway only. 

Weddings

Weddings are not permitted unless end of life or for deportation reasons. Limit of five people including the two people being married, a celebrant and two witnesses. 

Weddings are permitted with up to 10 people, plus those needed to conduct the ceremony. Limit does not include infants under 12 months. 

Funerals

Funerals are permitted with no more than 10 people, plus those necessary to conduct the funeral. This limit doesn’t include infants under 12 months of age.

Funerals are permitted with no more than 20 people, plus those necessary to conduct the funeral. This limit doesn’t include infants under 12 months of age.

Schools & Childcare

Primary, secondary schools and higher education institutions will have remote learning except for vulnerable children or children of authorised workers. Higher education students who are on the Authorised Provider list will require a permit.

 

Childcare centres are closed. Only essential workers and single parents will have access to childcare.

Schools will open for students in Prep - Year 2, and for Year 12 students. Remote learning for all other levels except for vulnerable children or children of authorised workers. Masks are required for all students 12 and over.

 

Higher education continues remote learning unless permitted study.

 

Childcare, kindergarten and family daycare is open.

Authorised workers

Workforce permits are required for authorised workers to travel to work. 

 

Workforce limits apply to construction sites.

 

Commercial cleaners are permitted at non-residential premises only for services that cannot be deferred.

 

If you can work from home you must.

Workforce permits are required for authorised workers to travel to work.

 

Workforce limits apply to construction sites.

 

Commercial cleaners are permitted at non-residential premises only for services that cannot be deferred.

 

If you can work from home you must. Office work can return at 25% or up to 10 people if total workforce is less than 40. Density limits of 1 person per 4sqm applies.

Retail

Essential retail can open with a density limit of 1 person per 4sqm.

Open. Density limits of 1 person per 4sqm applies.

 

Masks mandatory and cannot be removed for eating and drinking in retail settings.

Beauty therapy

Hairdressers, barbers and beauty therapists are closed. 

Open with cap of 10 people. Masks must remain for duration of service.

Religious gatherings

No in-person religious gatherings are permitted.

 

Broadcast services are permitted. Only those necessary to conduct the service may be on site - limited to five people and must be the same five people each time. 

Permitted with up to 20 people per venue, plus those necessary to conduct the ceremony.

Sport & Outdoor

Indoor physical recreation and sport is closed with limited exceptions for hydrotherapy. 

 

Outdoor playgrounds are open for children under 12 years with one parent/carer. Adults cannot remove their mask to eat of drink while supervising children. QR code check-in required.

 

Outdoor physical recreation and sport including skate parks, basketball hoops and outdoor exercise equipment are open. 

 

You can exercise and/or socialise outdoors for up to four hours daily with another person within your 5km bubble, plus dependants that cannot be left at home. You cannot exercise with all members of your household. 

Indoor physical recreation and sport is open with 10 people indoor and 20 outdoor per venue. 

 

Pools are permitted to have 50 people outdoor and 20 people indoor. Hydrotherapy and swimming lessons may occur, while spas, saunas and steam rooms are closed. 

 

Outdoor playgrounds, physical recreation and sport including skate parks, basketball hoops and outdoor exercise equipment is open.

 

Community sport permitted with only the minimum required to train. Spectators prohibited except one parent/carer to supervise children.

 

Outdoor pools open with limit of 50 people.

 

Outdoor personal training permitted with up to 10 people plus the trainer.

Entertainment

Indoor fixed / non-fixed seating: Closed. Up to five people can attend to broadcast a performance.

 

Outdoor fixed / non-fixed seating: Closed. Up to five people can attend to broadcast a performance.

 

Drive-in cinema/ amusement parks/ arcades / escape rooms / bingo centres: Closed

Indoor fixed / non-fixed seating: Open with maximum 20 people per space.

 

Outdoor fixed / non-fixed seating / amusement parks: Open with up to 25% capacity or maximum 300 people, whichever is less.

 

Drive-in cinemas: Open for households/bubbles. Patrons must remain in cars. Density quotas apply for communal spaces.

 

Arcades, escape rooms, bingo centres: Closed

Hospitals & care facilities

Care facilities

 

Visitor restrictions apply with permitted visitors including:

 

- Supporting care and emotional well-being

- Supporting people under 18 years old;

- As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act;

- To provide interpreter support; and

- For learning to support a patient’s care upon discharge.

 

No more than two visitors at a time. The cap can be exceeded if dependents of a visitor are in the group and care cannot be arranged.

 

Hospital Visitors

 

Visitor restrictions apply with permitted visitors including: 

 

- As a parent, guardian or carer of a child who is a patient;

- To provide care and support for the resident’s physical and emotional wellbeing;

- Supporting people under 18 years old;

- As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act;

- To provide interpreter support;

- As a partner of a pregnant woman or patient in a maternity ward; and

- For learning to support a patient’s care upon discharge. 

 

No more than two visitors per day. The cap can be exceeded if dependents of a visitor are in the group and care cannot be arranged.

 

Prospective residents can visit when looking for new accomodation if their centre is due to close or are awaiting discharge for care. 

Care facilities

 

Visitor restrictions apply with permitted visitors including:

 

- Supporting care and emotional well-being

- Supporting people under 18 years old;

- As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act;

- To provide interpreter support; and

- For learning to support a patient’s care upon discharge.

 

No more than two visitors at a time. The cap can be exceeded if dependents of a visitor are in the group and care cannot be arranged.

 

Hospital Visitors

 

Visitor restrictions apply with permitted visitors including: 

 

- As a parent, guardian or carer of a child who is a patient;

- To provide care and support for the resident’s physical and emotional wellbeing;

- Supporting people under 18 years old;

- As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act;

- To provide interpreter support;

- As a partner of a pregnant woman or patient in a maternity ward; and

- For learning to support a patient’s care upon discharge. 

 

No more than two visitors per day. The cap can be exceeded if dependents of a visitor are in the group and care cannot be arranged.

Real estate

Private inspections by appointment. 

 

Auctions online only.

Private inspections with a maximum 10 people plus real estate agent.

 

Auctions permitted with a maximum of 10 people.


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