COVID-19 Alert Level update: 3-Step approach for Auckland

Tuesday 5 October 2021

Ahead of the Ministry of Education Bulletin later today please find below a summary of the Prime Minister’s announcement made yesterday.

COVID-19 Alert Level update: 3-Step approach for Auckland

On Monday 4 October, the Prime Minister announced that Auckland will continue to remain at Alert Level 3, with a weekly review and a phased approach to shifting down the Alert Level 3 restrictions.

Step 1 comes into effect from 11.59pm on 5 October 2021. Steps 2 and 3 will come into effect if, and when, the public health assessment tells us it is safe to do so.

Step 1 - From 11:59pm on 5 October 2021 Auckland remains at Alert Level 3, but:

  • Outdoor gatherings between 2 households can go ahead, with a maximum of 10 people attending
  • Travel anywhere in the Auckland region for exercise, sports or recreation outdoors is allowed
  • Early learning centres can reopen to all children, with a maximum of 10 children in each bubble.

Step 2 -  Auckland remains at Alert Level 3, but if, and when, the public health assessment tells us it is safe to do so:

  • Retail can operate, with customers able to enter premises, wearing face coverings and keeping 2 metres apart 
  • Oublic facilities like pools, libraries and museums can reopen, with face coverings and 2-metre social distancing required
  • Outdoor gatherings of up to 25 people can go ahead.

Step 3 - Auckland remains at Alert Level 3, but if, and when, the public health assessment tells us it is safe to do so:

  • Hospitality venues, like cafes, bars, and restaurants, can reopen with a limit of 50 people
  • Event facilities likes cinemas, casinos, and theatres can open with a limit of 50 people in a defined space, wearing face coverings and 2-metre physical distancing
  • Close contact businesses, like hairdressers, barbers and beauty salons, can reopen, with workers wearing face coverings
  • Social gatherings, indoors and outdoors, can take place with a limit of 50 people in a defined space. 

Updated Alert Level 3 information is available on the Unite Against COVID-19 website.

Alert Level settings for Waikato Alert Level 3 areas

The above changes to Alert Level 3 restrictions do not apply to the Waikato Alert Level 3 areas (Raglan, Te Kauwhata, Huntly, Ngāruawāhia and Hamilton). The alert level for these areas will remain in place for five days and will be reviewed on Friday 8 October. For general Alert Level advice for those in an area of the Waikato at Alert Level 3, please see the Unite Against COVID-19 website here.

Cross-boundary travel to and from Waikato

The regional boundary between Waikato and Auckland is maintained.

Travel in and out of the Waikato Alert Level 3 area is limited to permitted reasons. You can cross into the Waikato Alert Level 3 area from an Alert Level 2 area to work in any business or service which is open in the Alert Level 3 area. But you cannot cross from the Waikato Alert Level 3 area to work in an Alert Level 2 area, except for work in permitted businesses and services.

If travelling in and out of the Waikato Alert Level 3 area, we recommend carrying a letter from your employer confirming place of work and need to travel. Other than across the boundary with Auckland, you are not required to provide evidence of a recent test and formal business travel documents.

Changes to Alert Level 2 settings

The rest of New Zealand outside of the affected Waikato areas and Auckland region is currently at Alert Level 2. 

The Government announced changes to the Alert Level 2 settings today. There will no longer be gathering limits for hospitality venues (though physical distancing requirements remain at these venues, and social gathering limits of 100 will remain in place). The ‘no standing’ requirement on public transport will also be lifted. More information will be available on the Unite Against COVID website.

A further update which will be school-specific will be provided later today.

Ngā mihi | Kind regards

Deborah James
Executive Director