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Coronavirus: Auckland to move to alert level 2, the new rules explained

Source: Josephine Franks // 05:00, 30 Aug 2020

Auckland region is currently at Alert Level 3. From 11:59pm on Sunday 30 August, Auckland is expected to move to Alert Level 2. There will still be restrictions on gatherings, funerals and tangihanga.

The rest of New Zealand is at Alert Level 2 and will stay at Alert Level 2.
Restrictions will be reviewed by 14 September 2020.

Auckland is set to move to alert level 2 at 11.59pm on Sunday after being in alert level 3 for two and a half weeks.

There are currently 137 active Covid-19 cases; 117 of which are linked to the Auckland August cluster of 133 cases - the largest the country has seen.

Since August 12, Aucklanders, like the rest of the country, will be able to move outside their bubbles, eat out and go back to work and school.

But there are still strict rules in place, and some of them have changed. Here’s a run-down of what they are.

At alert level 2, you can break your bubble, but Auckland is “stepping into” level 2. That means to start with, gatherings should have no more than 10 participants.

The exception for that is funerals and tangi, which up to 50 people can attend.

Restaurants and bars are allowed to open, but will not be able to serve groups larger than 10. The three S’s are back in play: customers must be seated, separated, and have a single server.

Sports will be allowed provided records are kept of who is playing so contact tracing can take place, and parks and public sports courts will re-open.

Gyms, museums, libraries and pools are allowed to open with physical distancing and record-keeping in place.

Shopping will be allowed but physical distancing will need to be maintained at retail businesses, with people keeping at least one metre, but ideally two metres, between them.

Cinemas, stadiums, concert venues and casinos can open with more than 100 people at a time, provided there are no more than 100 people in a defined space and the groups do not mix. A cinema, for example, would be able to have different films showing, as long as there were no more than 100 people at each screening.

Work and School

Auckland schools, early learning services and universities can re-open, with appropriate measures in place.

That includes QR contact tracing codes displayed, distance learning options for those who aren’t able to return and staff and children distanced so they don’t breathe on or touch each other.

Businesses are also allowed to open provided they’re following guidance around physical distancing and record keeping. However, alternative ways of working are still encouraged, so if you can work from home you should.

Within workplaces, you should stay one metre away from others where possible.

Businesses must display a QR code for the NZ Covid Tracer app.

Face masks

From Monday, face coverings will be mandatory on public transport, on planes and when using ride sharing services such as Uber.

While they’re not mandatory when you’re out and about, authorities are encouraging anyone over the age of 7 to wear them in places where social distancing is difficult, including in shops.


Aucklanders can move outside the city from Monday, but non-essential travel should be limited.

Air New Zealand has made mask-wearing compulsory on all flights out of Auckland.