Leaving your house

Advice for when you leave your house.

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Leaving your house at Alert Level 2

At Alert Level 2, we have the freedom to do more, but it's important that we all follow public health measures and consider others around us.

Do everything you can to reduce the risk of transmission.

  • COVID-19 is still in New Zealand. Play it safe.
  • Keep a 2 metre distance from people you don’t know when you’re in public places and retail stores.  
  • In other environments, such as your workplace, try to keep a 1 metre distance from others.
  • Wash your hands properly, and dry them.
  • Sneeze and cough into your elbow, and regularly disinfect surfaces. 
  • Keep track of where you’ve been and who you’ve seen.

There are times you should not be out and about.

  • If you’re sick, stay home. Don’t go to work or school. Don’t socialise.
  • If you have symptoms of a cold or flu call your doctor or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 and get tested. 
  • If you have been told to self-isolate you must do so immediately.

At-risk people

If you’re over 70 or are at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19, take extra care when you leave your house.

Guidance for at-risk people

Guidelines for specific activities

Guidance is available to help you stay safe at Alert Level 2.

Leaving your house at Alert Level 3

Just like Alert Level 4, people should stay at home as much as possible except for exercise, going to work or school, or visiting local services like the doctor, pharmacy or supermarket.

If you’re over 70 or are at higher risk of severe illness should you contract COVID-19, you need to be especially careful.

Guidance for at-risk people at Alert Level 3 [PDF, 609 KB]

If you do leave the house:

  • keep a 2 metre distance from other people at all times
  • stay local if you go out for exercise
  • only exercise alone or with the people in your extended bubble
  • if you're exercising outside and it's too busy to keep a 2 metre distance from others, go home — go out later
  • help our emergency services by only doing activities that you can do safely 
  • you can do activities that are local, that you're experienced in and which don't involve interacting with other people or equipment touched by other people,
  • don’t go out on the water — boating, jet-skiing and scuba diving isn't allowed
  • don’t do any team sports or training
  • don’t touch surfaces others may have touched — avoid park benches or playgrounds
  • don’t travel far from home, especially not to baches or second homes
  • only shop for essential supplies
  • wash your hands regularly.

See more tips about shopping safely

See more information about exercising safely

Leaving your house at Alert Level 4

Some people will need to go outside occasionally. For example, to take a short walk for exercise or mental wellbeing, or to visit local essential services like the doctor, pharmacy or supermarket.

If you're over 70, or are immunosuppressed, you should not be leaving the house at all.

If you do leave the house:

  • keep a 2 metre distance from other people at all times
  • stay local if you go out for exercise
  • only exercise alone or with the people you live with
  • if you're exercising outside and it's too busy to keep a 2 metre distance from others, go home — go out later
  • help our emergency services by only doing safe activities, such as going for a walk 
  • don't do activities that may require search and rescue services. For example, don’t go swimming, surfing, boating, hunting or tramping
  • don’t touch surfaces others may have touched — avoid park benches or playgrounds
  • don’t travel far from home, especially not to baches or second homes
  • only shop for essential supplies
  • wash your hands regularly.

See more tips about shopping safely

Stay close to home

Staying close to home is one of the most important things we can do to reduce the risk of spreading the disease.

Your local area means the area near your home that you regularly visit for essential services.

What is considered local “close” will differ depending on where you live. City dwellers may have a supermarket or dairy close by. If you live rurally, you may need to take a drive to reach these.

You can exercise at parks or beaches within your region, but the closer to home the better. Activities must be safe. Keep 2 metres away from anybody not in your bubble. Make minimal trips.

Most of all during this time, we encourage you to continue to be kind to one another. Stay in touch with your older relatives and vulnerable people, talk to your friends, whānau and neighbours over the phone and see if they need your support.

Acts of kindness and maintaining these connections is essential while we work to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Travelling on public transport, in cars and walking, cycling or scootering

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