Victoria Covid lockdown restrictions: latest update to Melbourne curfew and regional Vic coronavirus rules explained

Victorian premier Daniel Andrews has announced an extension to Melbourne’s lockdown until 11:59pm Thursday 2 September, and the introduction of a curfew from 9pm to 5am every day. These stricter restrictions take effect from 11:59pm Monday.

The lockdown initially applied to the entire state of Victoria, but now only applies to greater Melbourne. Rules in regional areas reverted to those which were in place before the latest lockdown – see more below.

When can I leave my house?

In metropolitan Melbourne, you cannot leave your home unless it is for one of five approved reasons – similar to previous lockdowns.

The reasons are: shopping for essentials; authorised work, if you cannot work from home, or education; exercise for up to two hours; caregiving, compassionate and medical reasons; and to get vaccinated.

Essential workers who can’t work from home will need to get a permit to go to work from 11:59pm Tuesday 17 August.

Can I go out at night?

A curfew has been reintroduced, meaning people in greater Melbourne must stay home between 9pm and 5am. The rule takes effect at 11.59pm Monday, but Daniel Andrews urged people to obey the 9pm deadline tonight.

How long will the lockdown last?

The lockdown in Melbourne was initially extended until 18 August, but as local transmission continues, it has been extended until 11:59pm Thursday 2 September. In regional Victoria, it lifted at 11.59pm Monday 9 August.

How far can I travel from home?

For shopping and exercise in Melbourne, you need to stay within a 5km radius of your home.

What are the rules for exercise?

In metropolitan Melbourne, there is a two-hour limit on exercise, and it can only be with one other person, and you must stay within a 5km radius of your home. Gyms have closed their doors again and community sport will also be suspended. Outdoor exercise equipment including skateparks will be closed.

What are the rules for wearing face masks?

Masks must be 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.

Masks can now also not be removed to drink alcohol outdoors.

What are the rules for construction?

Large construction projects will only be allowed to have 25% of their workers on site, and smaller construction projects will have a maximum of five workers.

It is anticipated that additional restrictions in relation to the movement of tradespeople between construction sites will be announced in coming days.

Is regional Victoria included?

From 11.59pm Monday 9 August, rules returned to those previously in place, meaning students returned to school and restaurants reopened with strict density limits.

There is no limit on the distance regional Victorians can travel from home. But people can only travel to Melbourne for a permitted reason, and must then follow restrictions there.

People from Melbourne will not be allowed into regional Victoria except for care and compassion reasons and for authorised work.

Andrews said on Monday he will not reintroduce the “ring of steel” between Melbourne and regional Victoria.

Can I have visitors to my house?

No, visitors to homes in greater Melbourne are not allowed, other than an intimate partner, or a nominated person for someone who lives alone.

Can I travel interstate?

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

What about the Victoria-NSW border bubble?

Victorian premier Daniel Andrews has announced people living in border communities with NSW will need to apply for a permit to travel in the bubble. People can apply from Thursday, but the permit rule will not be enforced until 6pm on Friday.

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

Only people deemed authorised workers and those granted an exemption on compassionate grounds will be able to get a permit to enter Victoria from NSW.

What about public gatherings?

Public gatherings are not allowed in greater Melbourne.

What is happening with schools?

Schools have moved to remote learning, except for vulnerable children and the children of essential workers. Higher education have also switched to remote learning.

Childcare centres and kindergartens are still open.

Can I dine in at a restaurant or cafe?

No. In metropolitan Melbourne, restaurants, cafes and pubs will be open for takeaway only.

Regional businesses will open for seated service only, and must check IDs of everyone they serve, to ensure they are from the regional Victoria area. Density requirements apply.

Are the shops open?

Essential retail, such as supermarkets and chemists, will remain open. Other stores are closed.

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What about weddings, funerals and religious services?

Funerals will be able to go ahead indoors and outdoors with up to 10 people, plus those required to conduct the funeral.

Weddings are not allowed, unless end of life or other exceptional circumstances apply.

People involved in producing religious broadcasts must be the same group of people each time.

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.

Can I go and get vaccinated?

Getting vaccinated is one of the reasons people who are eligible to receive the jab can leave home. The Victorian government has expanded the eligibility to include those aged between 40-49 for state-operated vaccination sites. People in this category can now call the hotline on 1800 675 398 to book an appointment.

  • 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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