Guidelines for hospitality establishments released

The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today. 

The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and the limit of 100 people in an indoor space will work in bars and restaurants and other hospitality and entertainment venues. 

Key components of the guidelines include:

  • Implementing a COVID-19 guest register of everyone in a venue
  • Undertaking regular head counts of people in a venue
  • Configuring electronic gaming machines to allow appropriate physical distancing 
  • Limiting table games at a casino to 5 persons per table

“These measures are important to protect the health of New Zealanders, which is our number one priority,” Health Minister David Clark said. 

“They will change the way we attend bars and restaurants and have an impact on the way people go about living their lives, but we have to apply common sense in these circumstances.

“Many of us look forward to a visit to a café or restaurant to mark special occasions or share time with friends and family. My hope is these changes will allow us to still make the most of these times while keeping us all safer.

“I want to thank the industry for their constructive engagement in developing the guidelines. We’re all in this together and the guidelines demonstrate how important good will and cooperation is at this time.

“I also want to thank in advance the public for their patience with bar and restaurant owners who will be acting in the best interests of all New Zealanders through implementing these guidelines,” David Clark said.

"Hospitality New Zealand appreciate the Government is continually adapting and responding to the COVID-19 situation. These new hospitality guidelines developed between Government and industry are a practical solution for hospitality venues to continue to operate and help assist with reducing the transmission of COVID-19,” said Julie White, Chief Executive of Hospitality New Zealand.

"It is paramount that we as industry work with Government during these unprecedented times

"Hospitality's top concern is the wellbeing of our people." Julie White said.

Graeme Stephens, SkyCity Entertainment Group Chief Executive Officer says: “We are working extremely hard to provide an environment that is safe for our staff and customers and we fully support the measures that have been put in place by the Ministry of Health for the hospitality industry.

“We employ over 4000 people in New Zealand and by working within these guidelines from government we can achieve our main priority at the moment, which is to stay open and operating for as long as possible to maintain shifts for staff and keep as many people as we can on a steady income throughout these unprecedented times.”