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Auckland moves back to Alert Level 3 for 3 days, rest of country to Level 2

posted on

11 August, 2020

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has made an announcement on Tuesday night that Auckland will go into Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country will go into Alert Level 2 as of 12:00pm Wednesday 12 August (midday).

It comes after four cases of community transmission in Auckland have been confirmed.

As of noon Wednesday 12 August, Auckland will move to Alert Level 3 for three days until midnight on Friday 14 August. The area covered by Level 3 is the Auckland Super City – from Wellsford in the north to Pukekohe in the south.

For Auckland this means cafes, bars, restaurants and other foodservice businesses must close their doors from noon tomorrow. Contactless delivery and pick-up is still allowed at Alert Level 3.

People will be required to work from home unless they are an essential service worker. Schools will close.For the rest of the country Alert Level 2 means hospitality businesses need to follow the three ‘S’s’ where practicable – with diners seated, separated and served by a single server. There is also a limit of 100 guests.

While this is a devastating blow for our members, we are here to support you through this. You will find linked below our approved guidelines for safe operations at Alert Levels 2 and 3, and other Level 2 and 3 resources. These have not changed since they were last issued. 

We remain laser focused on how we can best support you through these incredibly difficult times. We will keep you updated as we learn of new developments, and remember if in doubt please call our 0800 helpline for support. Now is a timely reminder to use the Government’s tracer app and adopt the QR code system which is available here to ensure all businesses can contact trace.

Our focus is now on supporting our members to manage this situation as best that you can and we are hopeful that we can get back to normal trading quickly.

View the Government statement on changing the Alert Levels here.

To assist members with your initial comunications to staff, the Association has created a letter template (2 versions), which can be accessed at the follow links:


The Restaurant Association guidelines for operating at Level 3 are available here.

General principles for operating at Level 3

  • Businesses must take health measures to keep their workers safe – maintain physical distance between workers, recording who is working together, limiting interaction between groups of workers, disinfecting surfaces, and maintaining high hygiene standards.
  • Hospitality businesses can operate under Alert Level 3 for contactless delivery and pick-up (including drive-through) of pre-prepared food and beverages. Customers cannot enter your premises.
  • People are still instructed to stay home unless for essential personal movement. Essential personal movement is for activities such as accessing local services and businesses, recreation or work and school.

Additional information on Government requirements for Aucklanders at Level 3


The Restaurant Association guidelines for operating at Level 2 are available here.

For hospitality business the key measures for operating at Level 2 are:

Restaurants, cafes & bars

  • The overall limit on numbers is 100.
  • Multiple groups of 100 are allowed provided they are in separate ‘defined spaces’ and there is no mingling of people between the different spaces (including in common areas) (see below information on defined spaces).
  • 1 metre physical distancing is required between groups and there must be at least 1 metre between tables.
  • Only one server is to serve at any table, to the greatest extent practicable.
  • Records must be kept to enable contact tracing for workers and customers, but there is no longer a requirement to record physical addresses.
  • Customers must be seated at a table except where using the toilet, paying or departing, ordering and collecting food and drinks (at unlicensed premises
  • Ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter is allowed for nonlicensed premises only, provided that physical distancing is maintained.
  • Ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter is not permitted at bars or other licensed premises.


  • Takeaway food can be ordered from the counter of any establishment, irrespective of whether patrons are able to dine-in or not.
  • 2 metre physical distancing is required.
  • Record keeping is not mandatory.
  • To reduce lines and queuing you could encourage pre-ordering online, over the phone or via an app

Additional information on Government requirements for New Zealanders at Level 2


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