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Operating your business at Level 2 ~ guidelines for the industry

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The Restaurant Association has created updated guidance for all food and beverage businesses, including bars, and food trucks to operate at Level 2. These guidelines have been created with input from relevant Government agencies.

Members are encouraged to phone the Association for clarification on any points.

Download the updated Operating your Business at Level 2 guide here (updated 23 June, 2021).

Check out our resources and Level 2 signage here (including pick up zone, wait here, physical distancing signs).

Further information:

For hospitality business the key measures are:

Business must ensure that a government-issued QR code is displayed in a prominent place near the entrance. This is a new requirement from the last lockdown and it is an offence not to comply with this requirement.

Restaurants, cafes & bars

  • In addition to displaying the QR code, businesses must also have other record-keeping systems and processes in place to enable a contact tracing record to be kept of all persons entering the workplace. This means an alternative way to collect customers details for the purposes of contact tracing, if they don’t scan the QR code poster.
  • The overall limit on numbers is 100 per separate ‘defined space’. There must be no mingling of people between the different defined 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; use your own contact tracing register for people who do not sign in by using the QR code app.
  • Customers must be seated at a table except where using the toilet, paying or departing, or, ordering and collecting food and drinks (only at unlicensed premises – see below).   
  • Ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter is allowed for non-licensed 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.
  • You can’t play pool or a gaming machine in the same area that food and drink is being consumed – though businesses are free to set up pool tables or gaming machines in a clearly separate space to the food and drink area.


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

Venues generally – Social Gatherings

“Social gatherings” are not subject to the usual “three S” rules for hospitality businesses.

If someone hires a hospitality venue for a social gathering, the gatherings rules apply, not the hospitality ones. Please refer to the Association’s Level 2 Guidelines for further information.

An enforcement officer who has reasonable grounds to believe that a business is not operating to the requirements outlined in the Order may issue an infringement notice, or impose conditions on the businesses operation and may direct any person who appears to be in charge of the business to close and cease operation. This will be for a period that does not exceed 24 hours after it is given.

Copyright © 2020 Restaurant Association of New Zealand Inc. All rights reserved.  No individual, party, entity is permitted to share, adapt or reuse this work without the consent of the Restaurant Association of New Zealand Inc.

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