18 August 2021
Alert Level 4 information on travel, personal movement, exercise, education, work, business and gatherings.
Masks must now be worn when visiting any essential store/service during Alert Level 4 lockdown.
From 8am Thursday 19 August 2021, the vaccination programme will resume nationwide.
Information from: www.covid19.govt.nz.
Staying at home — what it means
We need your support to protect New Zealand and eliminate COVID-19.
- Everyone must now stay home.
- The only reasons you can leave home are to shop for groceries, access necessary healthcare, get a COVID-19 test, exercise or go to work if you are working in an Alert Level 4 service.
- Only make physical contact with those who you live with.
Do not worry, during this time you will be able to access all the essentials you need, including medicine and food.
Food and shopping
- Supermarkets, dairies, pharmacies and food banks will remain open.
- When shopping, as much as possible send in only 1 family member at a time. Practise 2 metre physical distancing and good hygiene while shopping.
- Dairies and food banks will operate a strict “one-in, one-out” policy. They will not be allowed to sell or provide food prepared on the premises.
- Primary industries, including food and beverage production and processing, will still operate.
- Freight and courier drivers will continue to transport and deliver food.
- Grocery food deliveries — such as My Food Bag and Hello Fresh — will continue, as long as the food is not pre-cooked.
- Takeaway services will be closed.
- Liquor stores will close, unless within a Licensing Trust Area and will operate with a strict “one-in, one-out” policy.
- Wine and beer will continue to be sold at supermarkets.
Public spaces and gatherings
Places where the public gather must close
All public facilities must close. This includes:
Indoor and outdoor events cannot go ahead
Events, including family and social gatherings cannot go ahead. This includes birthdays, funerals and tangihanga, and weddings.
- Rubbish collection will continue. Check your local authority website for recycling.
- NZ Post will deliver mail and courier drivers will continue to make deliveries.
- Self-service laundries can stay open, as long as 2 metre physical distancing is enforced.
- Service stations will remain open and will be supplied.
- Public transport, regional air travel and ferries are mostly restricted to those involved in Alert Level 4 services, freight and those returning home in the first 48 hours.
- Some public transport will be available for essential trips, such as to the supermarket or doctor, but options are likely to be limited.
Exercise and recreation
- You can go for a walk, run or bike ride. Exercise is good for your mental health.
- If you do, it must be on your own, or with your household bubble.
- Keep a 2 metre distance.
- Do not do activities that may require search and rescue services. For example, do not go swimming, surfing, boating, hunting or tramping.
- If you are unwell, do NOT go outside.
Meeting friends and whānau
- Staying at home is meant to reduce the transmission of the virus.
- For this to work, you are asked to only have physical contact with the people you live with.
- If you live alone, you may arrange with another person living alone or a household to be part of your household bubble. This can include at most 2 households, and they must be in the same town or city.
- If you want to talk to a friend, call or video chat with them.
- If you want to talk to a neighbour, do it over the fence.
- Children can travel between the homes of separated parents so as long as they live in the same town/city.
- You can drop off groceries to others, but drop the groceries at the door. Always keep a 2 metre distance.
Alert Level 4 businesses and services
Only certain businesses may remain open to the public during the Alert Level 4 period. If a business is not sure if it provides Alert Level 4 services or products, it should close.
If you are a business or worker in a non-Alert-Level-4 business, you may still work — as long as this is from home. If you cannot work remotely, you must stay home.
Funerals and tangihanga
Funeral directors can continue working at Alert Level 4. However, gathering together for funerals and tangihanga is not permitted at Alert Level 4.
Only people from the same household bubble as the deceased person can go to the funeral home and cemetery with the deceased, and only if these are in the same region. Talk with your funeral director about specific arrangements, including how to keep your physical distance.
This may be a challenging time for you and your family. If you ever feel you are not coping, it is important to talk with a health professional.
For support if you need to talk, you can call or text 1737. It is free, anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to talk with a trained counsellor.
All schools and early childhood education centres are closed.
Schools will be providing information directly to all parents about what this means for them.
Schools are establishing ways to teach online and remotely.
Where possible, Alert Level 4 workers with children aged 0 to 14 need to make their own arrangements for childcare.
We know this will not be possible for everyone.
Alternative arrangements are in place to allow Alert Level 4 workers to access childcare and continue to work.
Your employer will tell you if you qualify as an Alert Level 4 worker for these purposes.
How to access healthcare
Health and medical facilities will remain open while we are at Alert Level 4.
You can still get medical help if you need it. This includes healthcare services, such as Healthline, GPs, cancer services, disability and aged support services.
However, if you need to see a doctor or other medical professional you MUST phone first.
Most consultations will happen over the phone or by videoconference to stop any risk of COVID-19 spreading by person-to-person contact.
If a face-to-face meeting is required, your doctor or other medical professional will organise this with you.
Please only call Healthline if you or someone you know feels unwell or you need medical advice, rather than general questions about COVID-19. It’s important Healthline is able to answer calls from those who need medical advice. The more people who call asking for general information, the fewer people who need medical advice can get through.
If you cannot get through and are severely unwell, for example having trouble breathing, contact emergency services (call 111).
Transport and travel
At Alert Level 4, all types of transport and travel are restricted.
Only travel for essential reasons, such as to get food or medicine, or to go to work if you are an Alert Level 4 worker.
If you are away from home when New Zealand moves to Alert Level 4, you have up to 48 hours to travel home. However, try and get home as soon as possible.
Transport and travel if you are unwell or at risk
If you are unwell or at high risk, you should avoid leaving your home at all.
Public transport, taxis, and ride-sharing services
You can use public transport, taxis and ride-sharing services for transport for essential reasons.
Private vehicles and active transport
You can use a private vehicle for essential reasons. You should only travel in your vehicle with people from your household.
You can use active transport like walking and biking, if you keep a 2 metre distance from anyone not in your household.
International air travel
Visitors and tourists can still use international air services to travel home but commercial flights have been impacted.
Do not go to the airport unless you have a ticket. If you do not have ticket, contact a travel agent or airline directly. If you can’t get a ticket, please contact your country’s embassy.
Domestic air travel
While in Alert Level 4, air travel will be used only to transport people travelling home in the first 48 hours after the move to Alert Level 4, undertaking Alert Level 4 services and to transport freight.
People at higher risk in particular should stay at home and ask others to pick up supplies for them. You just need to ask them to leave supplies at the door, rather than come in.
You are at high risk if you are over 70, have a compromised immune system or have underlying health conditions.
People with underlying medical conditions include a compromised immune system, liver disease, cancer, kidney disease, heart disease and diabetes mellitus, pregnant people or those on immunosuppressant medications.
You need to take more precautions to protect yourself against all infections, including COVID-19.
In an emergency
If there is another emergency while we are at Alert Level 4, you should do what you would normally do.
If you feel an earthquake: drop, cover and hold during the shaking. If you’re near the coast, remember long or strong: get gone.
If you are advised to evacuate by authorities because of a tsunami, flood, fire or other emergency, follow the evacuation advice.
Emergency evacuation orders will override the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 requirement to stay at home. If you have to evacuate and leave your house, take your grab bag with you and try to avoid contact with people who aren’t in your bubble. Stay 2 metres away from others.
If life or property is threatened always dial 111 for police, fire or ambulance.