FAQs Changes to Restrictions

About the changes

What changes have been made?  

From 11.59pm on Friday 29 May 2020, COVID-19 restrictions in the ACT will ease further. Key changes that will take effect include:

  • gyms, health clubs, fitness and wellness centres (including yoga, barre, pilates and spin facilities) can reopen with up to 20 people per enclosed space at one time if they can follow physical distancing
  • lifting of restrictions on indoor social sport to allow up to 20 people per enclosed space and ensuring there is low contact and limited sharing of equipment
  • reopening of galleries, museums and national institutions with groups of no more than 20 people with physical distancing of one person per 4 square metres
  • reopening of outdoor attractions such as the National Zoo and Aquarium and Cockington Green to allow groups of no more than 20 people (including children) with physical distancing of 1.5 metres
  • reopening of beauty salons and other personal services such as waxing, nail, tattoo and massage services, with a maximum of 20 people in the salons, or physical distancing of one person per 4 square metres, whichever is smaller
  • further easing restrictions on cafés, restaurants and other hospitality venues to allow up to 20 patrons per enclosed space or outdoor area if they can abide by physical distancing of one person per 4 square metres and put specific measures in place to manage personal contact.

The maximum limit has also been extended to other previously announced measures, including:

  • all indoor and outdoor gatherings can now have a maximum of 20 people (including children).
  • this includes gatherings at a person’s home, which can be a maximum of 20 people (with exceptions where two households coming together results in a gathering of more than 20 people).
  • weddings can now have up to 20 people attend, excluding those conducting the ceremony.
  • funerals, regardless of indoor or outdoor can have up to 50 people attend, excluding those conducting the service.
  • religious ceremonies and places of worship can have up to 20 people attend, excluding those conducting the service.
  • real estate open houses and auctions can proceed with a maximum of 20 people.

Sector FAQS

Click below for more on how these changes will impact specific sectors, more will become available soon:

To view the relevant direction, see the Public Health Directions page.

General Business

Who needs to request patron or attendee contact details?

For the following businesses and undertakings, the first name and contact number of every patron or attendee must be requested:

  • restaurants, cafés and other hospitality venues
  • gyms, health clubs, fitness or wellness centres
  • yoga, barre, pilates and spin facilities
  • boot camps and personal trainers
  • auction houses
  • real estate auctions, display homes and open house inspections
  • funerals and wedding ceremonies
  • nail salons, beauty therapy, tanning and waxing services
  • tattoo and body modification parlours; and
  • spa and massage parlours.

If you receive the information, you should also record the date and time the person attended the business or undertaking.

Patrons and attendees can decline to provide you with this information. If they do decline, you cannot refuse them service or entry on that basis.

How do I comply with the one person per 4 square metre rule?

Establish the floor space of your business premises. Divide it by four and round down. This is how many people you can have at your premises at a given time. You should have regard for permanent fixtures when calculating the usable space.

For more information, download the factsheet about the 4 square metre rule.

Do I need to ensure people are 1.5 metres apart?

Remaining 1.5 metres from others is an important way to keep safe and should be done where possible and as much as possible.

Businesses should communicate this to employees and configure their premises to encourage 1.5 metres distancing and to make it as easy as possible for anyone at the premises. However, there is no onus on proprietors and employees to ensure patrons comply with 1.5 metre distancing rules.

You can download signage to help advise customers from the Resources page.

Do I need to have a COVID Safety plan?

Yes. This is a requirement of the Public Health Directions and having a COVID Safety plan forms an important part of the risk assessment all employers must conduct under Work Health and Safety legislation.

Businesses may be asked to produce their COVID Safety Plans upon request by an authorised officer  .

What does it mean to manage ingress and egress?

Managing ingress and egress is about managing the flow of people entering and leaving a premise. The intent is to minimise risk by ensuring people are not gathering at entries and exits and can maintain an appropriate distance from one another when entering or exiting a premise. Proprietors should consider how to best manage ingress and egress in their premises. Things to consider include:

  • establishing different entry and exit points where possible
  • putting up signs asking people not to gather at entry and exit points; and
  • marking the floor with tape to indicate to people where to stand when waiting in a line for service.


I have been working from home, can I go back to work?

Working from home where it works for you and your employer is still encouraged at this time.

If you cannot work from home, physical distancing and good hygiene practices should be maintained.

It is also important to remember that if you are sick, you must not attend your workplace. You must stay at home and away from others and you should get tested if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.

You can get tested for COVID-19 in the ACT if you have the following symptoms:

  • Fever of 38 degrees or greater (or recent history of fever such as chills or night sweats); or
  • Respiratory infection (such as shortness of breath, cough, or sore throat).

In addition, people who have sudden onset of loss of smell, loss of taste, runny nose, muscle pain, joint pain, diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite may be eligible for COVID-19 testing, after assessment by a health professional.

If you develop any of these symptoms, please call your GP or visit a Respiratory Assessment Clinic.

Note: All people who are tested should self-isolate until they receive a negative test result.

When travelling to and from your home for testing, do not attend any public places, such as shops or cafes/restaurants, on the way. If possible, you should travel using a private mode of transport, such as a private car, to minimise exposure to others.

If public transport, rideshare or taxi is your only travel option, you should wear a mask (if you have one), avoid direct contact with other people (including other passengers, drivers and transport staff), cough/sneeze into your elbow, and wash your hands before and after you travel.

acknowledgement icon
Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.

Last Updated: May 27 2020