Bars and night clubs

How to stay safe when going out to bars and night clubs.

Bars and night clubs at Alert Level 1

At Alert Level 1, bars and night clubs can have as many people on their premises as they want. There is no requirement for dining-in customers to be seated, separated and have a single server. 

Bars and night clubs legally must display a QR code poster to help you keep track of where you’ve been. We recommend you use the NZ COVID Tracer app to do this, or another way that works for you.

Stay safe at Alert Level 1

At Alert Level 1, we still need to play it safe. We all need to be ready in case COVID-19 comes back into the community.

To be ready at Alert Level 1:

  • maintain good hygiene
  • stay home if you’re sick
  • get tested if you have cold or flu symptoms
  • keep track of where you’ve been and who you’ve seen.

Get more advice on living at Alert Level 1, including keeping your distance, wearing face coverings and contact tracing for businesses

Bars and night clubs at Alert Level 2

Bars and night clubs can open at Alert Level 2, with 100 people per defined space.

1 metre physical distancing is required, except for friends and whānau. Tables will be 1 metre away from other groups.

Bars and night clubs have been shown to be places where COVID-19 can spread easily, so it’s important to follow the requirements, even when you’ve had a few drinks.

You should not go to a bar or night club if you:

  • have COVID-19 symptoms, or  
  • if you need to be in isolation for any reason. 

Follow the 3 S’s

If you go to a bar or night club, follow the 3 S’s:

Seated

Stay seated at your table unless using the bathroom, paying or departing. This means no dancefloors or standing around tables.

Separated 

Your table will be set up at least 1 metre apart from other groups. Make sure you keep 1 metre physical distance throughout the night from other groups and people you don’t know. 

Single server

Each group will have only 1 server, where practical. Make all your orders through your server and do not go up to the bar to order food or drinks.

Playing pool and gaming machines 

You can play pool and use gaming machines provided they are 1 metre apart from each other. You can not eat or drink while playing pool.

When playing, make sure you keep 1 metre apart from other groups. 

Contact tracing 

We recommend you sign in to a bar or night club with either:

  • the NZ COVID Tracer app and QR codes, or 
  • an alternative contact tracing system.

Defined space

A defined space is a single indoor or outdoor space separated from other spaces.

If a place has more than 1 defined space, then people should not intermingle between the defined places. This includes when entering, leaving, or using the toilet. It does not include workers.

This also applies to separate businesses that work from the same location. 

Indoors

An indoor space is a single space if there are walls that substantially divide that space from other spaces. The walls can be permanent or temporary.

Outdoors

An outdoor space is a single space if there:

  • are walls that substantially divide that space from other spaces — the walls can be permanent or temporary, or
  • is at least 2 metres between all people in that space and any other people (outside that space).

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