Explainer: How Will Victoria’s Reopening Plan Work?

victoria reopening

Melbourne and regional Victoria have been under pretty strict restrictions for the past few months in an effort to curb a significant increase in COVID-19 cases. Melbourne’s city-wide lockdown was due to end on 13 September, but this has since been extended. Victoria has been delivered a ‘reopening roadmap’, which shows how restrictions will be eased at different dates/stages. 

Here’s everything you need to know about Victoria reopening. 

When does lockdown end?

Melbourne’s stage four lockdown (which includes an 8pm to 5am curfew and a 5km travel limit) was set to end on the 13 September. This has been extended to 28 September, as officials have declared that the number of new COVID-19 cases has not dropped enough. Although, there will be some slight relaxations to the restrictions.

Changes to restrictions from 13 September

From 13 September, key changes to the restrictions in Melbourne include:

  • Curfew changes to 9pm to 5am
  • Exercise or recreation: two people or a household can meet outdoors for a maximum of two hours (previously it was one hour)
  • “Single person bubble” – you can now have one nominated visitor to your home if you’re living alone (previously visitors weren’t allowed in your home, except for care reasons)

What is the reopening roadmap?

From 13 September, Melbourne will be in the first step of the reopening roadmap. The city will move on to the second step after 28 September and when the city can reach an average daily COVID-19 case count of 30-50 cases over a 14-day period. For Melbourne to move on to the next step, the time period must have passed and the number of cases must be low enough.

Melbourne will reach the final step, ‘COVID normal’, when there are no new cases for 28 days, no active cases (state-wide) and no outbreaks of concern in other states and territories around Australia.

What if I live in regional Victoria?

From 13 September, regional Victoria will move on to the aforementioned second step. This means, amongst other restrictions, people can only leave home for four reasons: school/work (if these can not be done from home), care/caregiving, to purchase essential items, and exercise.

In addition:

  • Up to five people from a maximum of two households can meet outdoors for social interaction
  • “Single person bubble” – you can now have one nominated visitor to your home if you’re living alone
  • Outdoor exercise and recreation allowed
  • Restaurants and cafes open for takeaway and delivery only
  • Retailers can open, with restrictions