Alert Level 3

Alert Level 3 information on personal movement, exercise, education, work, business, travel and gatherings.

Auckland region is at Alert Level 3

Auckland region moved to Alert Level 3 at 12 noon on Wednesday 12 August 2020.

The rest of New Zealand moved to Alert Level 2

This will remain in place until Wednesday 26 August.

If you're unwell

  • If you’re sick, stay home. Don’t go to work or school. Don’t socialise.
  • If you have symptoms of cold or flu call your doctor or Healthline and get advice about being tested.
  • If you have been told to self-isolate you must do so immediately.

Testing locations in Auckland — get a free test for COVID-19 if you have cold or flu symptoms (external link)

Personal movement

Under Alert Level 3 you should continue to stay in your household bubbles whenever you are not at work or school.

You must stay within your household bubble but can expand this to connect with close family and whānau, or bring in caregivers, or support isolated people.

It’s important to protect your bubble. Keep your bubble exclusive and only include people where it will keep you and them safe and well. If anyone within your bubble feels unwell, they must immediately self-isolate from everyone else within your bubble.

Don’t invite or allow social visitors, such as friends, family and whānau, to enter your home.

Physical distance

Maintain physical distancing of 2 metres outside your home, when buying the groceries or exercising. Using a face covering when in contact with others you don’t know is highly recommended.

Face coverings

It is highly recommended that you wear a face covering if you are out and about.

Workplaces and businesses

Under Alert Level 3, you are required to work from home if you can.

Workplaces can only open if:

  • workers cannot work from home, and
  • workplaces are operating safely, and
  • customers are not allowed on the premises, and
  • businesses can trade without physical contact with customers, for example through phone or online orders, delivery, pick-up and drive-through.

Businesses cannot offer services that involve close personal contact, unless it is an essential service, emergency or critical situation.

Supermarkets, dairies and petrol stations can have customers on their premises.

Retail is possible through delivery and non-contact collection at the door, including of prepared food. Customers cannot consume food or drink on premises.

If businesses cannot operate safely, employees must not go to work and premises should remain closed.

How to do business at Alert Level 3

Public venues

Public venues must close. This includes libraries, museums, cinemas, food courts, gyms, pools, playgrounds and markets.

Golden Rules for business at Alert Level 3

  1. If your business requires close physical contact it can’t operate.
  2. Your staff should work from home if they can.
  3. Keep contact tracing records of anyone who has close interaction, for example staff and contractors.
  4. All businesses must display the government QR code poster for use with the NZ COVID Tracer App, by 19 August.
  5. Customers cannot come onto your premises — unless you are a supermarket, dairy, petrol station, pharmacy or permitted health service.
  6. Your business must be contactless. Your customers can pay online, over the phone or in a contactless way. Delivery or pick-up must also be contactless.
  7. Basic hygiene measures must be maintained. Physical distancing, hand washing and regularly cleaning surfaces. Workers must stay home if they are sick.
  8. Staff must remain a minimum of 1 metre apart at all times where practical. Other measures, such as PPE including face coverings, should be used where appropriate.
  9. Different advice applies to essential healthcare workers, border agencies, courts and tribunal staff, first responders and corrections staff. You can get further advice  from the Ministry of Health(external link) (external link).
  10. You must meet all other health and safety obligations.

Travel and transport

At Alert Level 3 travel is restricted. This is to minimise the risk of transmission and COVID-19 spreading.

Travel within your local area

You can travel within you your local area, for example going to work or school, shopping, or getting exercise. Public transport can continue to operate with strict health and safety requirements.

You should maintain physical distancing and wear a face covering.

Travel between regions

Travel into, out of, and through Auckland is heavily restricted while the city is at Alert Level 3.

You can travel if you are returning to your primary residence. Not to go to a bach or holiday home.

There are limited exemptions for other people to travel which are listed in the Order, this includes people are who are moving freight, and a range of government workers.

The Police are enforcing this at checkpoints around Auckland.

This restriction is initially very tight, and there is room for us to adjust if we need to.

Travelling through Auckland Airport

The restrictions on flying into and out of Auckland are the same as driving in our out.

Aviation Security staff at the doors of Auckland Airport. They are asking people why they are travelling, and if they believe there are any issues they can bring Police into that conversation.


Where possible we encourage students to learn from home. Schools can safely open but will have limited capacity. 

Gatherings and events

Gatherings of up to 10 people can continue, but only for:

  • wedding services
  • funerals and tangihanga.

Physical distancing and public health measures must be maintained.

Information on gatherings and events at Alert Level 3

Information on funerals and tangihanga at Alert Level 3

Information for religious communities at Alert Level 3

Exercise and recreation

You can do low-risk recreation activities in your local area, for example to go for a walk or a run, a swim at the beach or a day walk. 

Now isn't the time to take up new activities, or expose yourself or your bubble to any risk. Use your common sense — stay local, stay safe. 

Recreational fishing is allowed from public conservation land as long as you stay in your local area.

Boating, yachting and any team sports or training are not allowed.

You can do recreational activities by yourself or with people from your bubble.

Whitebaiting is permitted at Alert Level 3 during the whitebaiting season. You may only fish locally, stay 2 metres from other river users and don’t use motorised vehicles to get to your fishing spot.

Detailed advice on exercise and recreation — including hunting, fishing, and whitebaiting

At-risk people

People at high risk of severe illness such as older people and those with existing medical conditions are encouraged to stay at home where possible, and take additional precautions when leaving home.

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