Greater Sydney restrictions Updates, how far can i travel from home? If you live in an area of concern that is in Greater Sydney then different rules apply to you. See the rules for areas of concern.
Read Also: How to Apply for Work Permit NSW
Stay at home rules
You must stay home. Only leave your home if you have a reasonable excuse.
Stay at home rules apply to everyone living or staying in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong local government areas.
These rules also apply to anyone who has been in Greater Sydney for any reason within the last 14 days.
If you live in Greater Sydney and need to travel more than 50 kilometres from Greater Sydney to carry out work, you need to comply with additional rules.
If you are moving to a new home outside Greater Sydney, or inspecting a potential new home you must register for travel from Service NSW.
If you are travelling to a different house outside of Greater Sydney for work, or urgent maintenance or repairs, or for animal welfare, only one person from your household can go. You must register for travel from Service NSW.
Reasonable excuses to leave your home
- Getting food or other goods and services for the personal needs of the household or for other household purposes, for pets or for vulnerable people:
- Only one person per household should leave home to get food or other goods and services each day (you can take a dependent person with you if that person can’t be left at home).
- The goods and services must be picked up within the local government area where you live, or within 5km of where you live, but not in an area of concern. If the goods or services are not available in the local government area where you live, or within 5km of where you live, you can travel to the nearest place where they are available.
- Browsing in shops is not allowed.
- You cannot leave Greater Sydney to obtain goods and services outside Greater Sydney.
- For work, if it is not reasonably practicable for you to work from home:
- see more about rules for working including when and where you must work from home
- Going to school, university or college if you can’t study from home.
- Getting medical care (e.g. visiting your GP), including COVID-19 tests and vaccinations, getting medical or health supplies or donating blood.
- Going to childcare, or picking up or dropping off a person at childcare.
- Giving effect to new or existing arrangements for access to, and contact between, parents and children or siblings for children who do not live in the same household as a parent or sibling of the child.
- Attending a small funeral or memorial service or wedding service that complies with the specific rules about the service.
- Fulfilling carer’s responsibilities or providing care or assistance (including personal care) to a vulnerable person:
- 2 people can visit a home for carers’ responsibilities or to provide care or assistance at any one time, if 2 people are required for care or assistance to be provided safely.
- A child who is a dependant of a carer can also visit if the child requires supervision and childcare arrangements are not reasonably available.
- Moving house or inspecting property:
- You can move to a new home within Greater Sydney or move between your houses within Greater Sydney.
- If you are moving to a new home outside Greater Sydney, you must register for travel from Service NSW.
- You can inspect a potential new home within Greater Sydney.
- You can only inspect a potential new home outside of Greater Sydney if you have a genuine intention to live outside of Greater Sydney as soon as practicable, you inspect the property as a potential place of residence, and you have registered for travel with Service NSW.
- If you are travelling to a different house outside of Greater Sydney for work, or urgent maintenance or repairs, or for animal welfare, only one person from your household can go. You must register for travel with Service NSW.
- Accessing public services, including social services, employment services, services provided to victims (including as victims of crime), domestic violence services, and mental health services.
- Legal obligations.
- To provide emergency assistance to a person or in an emergency.
- To avoid injury, illness or to escape the risk of harm.
- For compassionate reasons, including where two people are in a relationship but do not live in the same household.
- To feed an animal or for animal welfare.
- If you are a priest, minister of religion or member of a religious order, to go to your place of worship or provide pastoral care.
- Supervising or facilitating a business moving to new premises.
- Transporting a member of your household who is authorised to leave because they have a reasonable excuse (for example, taking a child to school), or taking a person to a home within their friends bubble).
- To visit a person as their nominated visitor.
- To participate in a friends bubble .
Rules for when you leave your home
Leaving home to go to work
In Greater Sydney, including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong local government areas, employers must require an employee to work from home if the employee is reasonably able to do so.
If you cannot work from home, your workplace is allowed to be open, and you go to your workplace, you must wear a face mask (unless an exemption applies).
Most workplaces in NSW are also required to electronically record the details of people who enter them, including their staff. This means you might need to check-in when you are at work.
Many workplaces are also required to have COVID-19 Safety Plans which may require you to take other steps to protect yourself, your colleagues and customers from the risk of being infected with COVID-19.
If you need to enter an area of concern for work, you will need to register for travel with Service NSW. You do not need a permit for the provision of an emergency service.
If you live in Greater Sydney and need to travel more than 50 kilometres from Greater Sydney to carry out work, you need to register for travel with Service NSW.
Exercise or outdoor recreation
If you live in Greater Sydney you can leave your home to engage in exercise or outdoor recreation within your local government area or within 5km of your home.
If you are fully vaccinated, you can attend an outdoor gathering in a public space of up to 5 people for exercise or outdoor recreation so long as all those at the gathering aged 16 years or over are fully vaccinated:
- You must have proof of your vaccination with you at all times.
- You must show a Police Officer your proof of vaccination if its requested.
- Fully vaccinated means you have had 2 doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccination or have a medical contraindication certificate issued to you.
- The 5 person limit on these gatherings does not include children aged 12 or under.
- You are not prevented from attending more than one such gathering in a day.
If you are not fully vaccinated:
- You can attend an outdoor gathering in a public space with 1 other person that you do not live with, or your nominated visitor (“singles bubble”), for exercise or outdoor recreation.
- If you live with more than 2 other people, you can all exercise and engage in outdoor recreation together.
From Monday 27 September 2021, you will be able to resume swimming at outdoor public pools either within your local government area or within 5km of your home.
If you are in the local government areas of Bayside, Blacktown, Burwood, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield, Georges River, Liverpool, Parramatta Strathfield or some suburbs of Penrith, go to the local government areas of concern (Sydney) to show a distance of 5km.
Viewing the map
- Enter an address to display a distance of 5km on the map.
- Click the arrows on the map toolbar to show or hide the address input panel.
Visitors to your home
You must not allow a person to visit your home, except if it is:
- for childcare
- giving effect to new or existing arrangements for access to, and contact between, parents and children or siblings for children who do not live in the same household as a parent or sibling of the child
- to assist a person to move places of residence
- to avoid an injury, illness or risk of harm
- because of an emergency
- to view or inspect property to lease or purchase it, but only in compliance with specific rules on property inspections
- a nominated visitor
- for caring or compassionate reasons
- for work, but only in compliance with specific rules about workers at homes
- as part of a friends bubble.
Nominated visitor (‘singles bubble’)
If you live alone – which means there are no other adults who live in the same home – you can have one nominated visitor.
A nominated visitor is one person you can socialise with at your place of residence who:
- can only be one person (and their dependent children, if there are no alternative care arrangements and the children need supervision)
- can visit you on more than one occasion
- is not a nominated visitor for another person
- lives in or is staying in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong local government areas or in an area of concern.
From Monday 20 September 2021, your nominated visitor can live either in a local government area of concern or Greater Sydney. There will no longer be a need to register a nominated visitor with Service NSW.
A friends bubble is:
- up to 3 people aged 18 years old and under;
- who play or study together at one person’s home; and
- who live in the same local government area or within 5km of each other member of the bubble
All people in the friends bubble must live in a home where everyone who is 18 years and over has:
- 2 doses of a COVID-19 vaccination; or
- a medical exemption.
You can only be a member of one friends bubble.
Another person (e.g. a family member, friend, or carer) can drop off and collect a person who is visiting a home as part of their friends bubble.
If you are transporting a person who is visiting a home as part of their friends bubble, you cannot enter the home.
Caring and compassionate visits
You are allowed to visit a home – and have a person visit your home – for caring and compassionate reasons including:
- providing care to vulnerable people
- visiting a person you are in a relationship with but do not live with.
Only one person may visit a place of residence at any one time to:
- provide care or assistance to vulnerable people and/or
- for compassionate reasons.
Two people may visit a place of residence to fulfil carers’ responsibilities but only if:
- it is necessary to provide safe care to a person who is resident at the dwelling
- they remain at the residence for a minimum time to provide safe care to the person.
You may bring a dependent child with you, if they need supervision and childcare arrangements are not reasonably available.
When visiting, you may be asked to provide information to NSW Police about your visit. You must comply with all other requirements of the rules.
Travelling by car
You can travel in a car with people you live with. For example, taking a child to school is a reasonable excuse to leave home because you are transporting a member of your household who is authorised to leave because they have a reasonable excuse. You can also transport a person in your household to and from their friends bubble.
You are only allowed to share a car with a person you do not live with if it is:
- an emergency
- for a compassionate reason
- to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person
- a car being used as a taxi or rideshare.
- required to use a vehicle for your work
- travelling with your nominated visitor to exercise outdoors.
Proof of address
You must carry proof of your name and address if you:
- are in a vehicle with another person
- have left your home to obtain goods or services
- are exercising outdoors or have left your home for outdoor recreation
- have a reasonable excuse and are leaving Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong local government areas.
If you are required to carry proof of your name and address, you must produce it to a police officer if they ask for it.
You must return home as soon as you can if NSW Police tell you to.
Penalties apply if you do not follow the stay at home rules.
From Monday 20 September 2021, up to 5 people can attend an outdoor gathering in a public space for exercise or outdoor recreation so long as all those at the gathering aged 16 years or over are fully vaccinated. Fully vaccinated means 2 doses of a COVID-19 vaccination.
The 5 person limit on these gatherings does not include children aged 12 or under.
Not fully vaccinated (unvaccinated and partially vaccinated)
If you are in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong, you must not participate in an outdoor public gathering of more than 2 people, unless you are:
- working at a premises that is permitted to be open if you cannot work from home
- providing care or assistance to vulnerable persons
- gathering with other people in your household
- providing emergency assistance to a person
- fulfilling a legal obligation
- moving home or moving your business to a new premises
- attending a small funeral or memorial service or a small wedding.
You can take part in exercise that:
- complies with the gathering rules
- is not done at premises required to be closed.
See advice on sport and recreation.
You must carry a face mask with you if you are not at home.
You must wear a face mask in all indoor or outdoor areas, other than a place of residence. This includes when you are on a street, in a park, at the shops or at work.
There are limited exceptions, such as where you are:
- eating and drinking
- in a vehicle with members of your household or your nominated visitor (‘singles bubble’)
- in an emergency situation.
Learn more about face mask rules.
Weddings and funerals
Number of people
A maximum of 11 people can attend a wedding service in Greater Sydney. The 11 people are:
- a person legally required to conduct the wedding service being the celebrant or officiant
- the 2 people getting married
- the 2 necessary witnesses
- a person recording the service or
- up to 5 guests.
You can leave home to attend a wedding if you are one of these 11 people.
Wedding services held outside Greater Sydney
If you live in Greater Sydney, including a local government area of concern, you can only leave home to attend a wedding outside Greater Sydney if you are a parent, child, or sibling of one of the persons getting married.
Greater Sydney includes the Blue Mountains and Wollongong local government areas.
Wedding services held in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong and local government areas of concern
If you live outside Greater Sydney, you can leave home and enter Greater Sydney (including an area of concern) to attend a wedding service only if you are:
- one of the people who is legally required to conduct the wedding service being the celebrant or officiant
- one of the 2 people getting married
- one of the 2 necessary witnesses
- the person recording the service; or
- a parent, child or sibling of one of the people getting married.
From Monday 20 September 2021, if you live in Greater Sydney, including in an area of concern, you can attend a wedding service in Greater Sydney if you are one of the 11 people attending the wedding service.
No more than 11 people can attend a wedding in Greater Sydney.
Funerals and memorial services
A maximum of 10 people can attend a funeral or memorial service or gathering afterwards in Greater Sydney, including in a local government area of concern.
The 10 person maximum also applies to an outdoor funeral, memorial service or gathering afterwards. Only one group of mourners can attend any of the gatherings. A funeral cannot occur at a place of residence.
In addition to the 10 people attending the service there can also be:
- a person conducting the service
- other people who are necessary for the preparation and conduct of the service.
Funeral or memorial services held outside Greater Sydney
If you live in Greater Sydney, including in a local government area of concern, you can leave home to attend a funeral or memorial service outside Greater Sydney, only if you are a:
- spouse (including de facto) of the deceased
- parent of the deceased
- child of the deceased
- sibling of the deceased.
Funeral and memorial services held in Greater Sydney
Attending a funeral or memorial service is a reasonable excuse to leave home in Greater Sydney, including local government areas of concern.
From Monday 20 September 2021, if you live in Greater Sydney, including in an area of concern, you can attend a funeral or memorial service in Greater Sydney if you are one of the 10 people attending the service.
You cannot attend a funeral or memorial service in Greater Sydney if there are more than 10 people at the service.
Places of worship
A place of worship must not be open to members of the public.
Services may be livestreamed from a church, meeting house, mosque, synagogue, temple or other place of worship that is not open to members of the public.
You can attend the premises if you are directly involved in the service or the operation of the equipment for the livestream event.
Find out about the rules that apply to singing in a place of public worship during a livestreamed event.
Restrictions on businesses and premises
Closure of retail businesses except for delivery and ‘click and collect’
Most retail shops in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong are closed to the public.
Businesses that are closed can continue to operate to:
- provide a ‘click and collect’ service to customers, for collecting goods purchased online or on the phone and
- deliver goods purchased online or by phone.
A ‘click and collect’ service can also be used by customers to return or exchange goods by prior arrangement either by phone or online.
Businesses operating delivery and/or click and collect services must follow the requirements for:
Libraries may operate a click and collect service for collecting and returning books, magazines, DVDs or similar products ordered online or by phone.
Financial and other assistance is available. See the COVID-19 Support Package.
Retail businesses that can stay open to the public
Businesses providing essential products and services that can be open to the public include:
- grocery stores
- shops that mainly sell food or drinks, like butchers, bakeries, fruit and vegetable shops, and delicatessens
- petrol stations
- banks and financial institutions
- hardware and building supplies
- landscaping material supplies
- rural supplies
- shops that mainly sell:
• pet supplies
• newspapers, magazines or stationary (for example, newsagents)
• office supplies
• maternity or baby supplies
• medical or pharmaceutical supplies (for example, chemists)
• alcohol (for example, liquor stores)
- post offices
- garden centres and plant nurseries
- vehicle hire businesses but not including places at which vehicles are sold at
- shops that mainly carry out repairs of mobile phones
- laundromats and drycleaners.
Renovations and construction
Find out about the rules and restrictions for:
- work carried out at homes where people are living: renovations, repairs, maintenance and cleaning
- construction activity.
Auctions for real estate and other goods, and open inspections or real estate (including display homes)
The following activities must not take place in Greater Sydney, including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong:
- Auctions that people attend in person, including for real estate, furniture and antiques.
- Open inspections of properties, including display homes, although inspections can be conducted by private appointment for one person only.
Auctions can take place for food supply, livestock, fibre or crops.
You must follow the stay at home rules if you are a real estate agent or a prospective purchaser of real estate.
Caravan parks and camping grounds
Caravan parks and camping grounds are closed to the public, except to:
- provide accommodation to permanent residents or other people who have no other place of permanent residence, and their visitors, or
- people who were staying there on Friday 25 June 2021 and have not extended their booking
- local workers and overnight travellers, and their visitors.
Places closed to the public
The following places in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong must be closed to the public:
- Retail premises, except for certain businesses.
- Pubs and registered clubs except for:
- selling food or beverages for people to consume off-site and
- providing accommodation, including allowing food and drinks to be consumed in a person’s room
- holding a funeral or memorial service that complies with the rules for funerals and memorial services
- holding a wedding service that complies with the rules for wedding services.
- Food and drink premises, except for:
- selling food or beverages for people to consume off-site
- selling food to be consumed in a person’s room if in a hotel or motel
- if the premises are part of a shopping centre, selling food or beverages for people to consume outside of the shopping centre
- holding a funeral or memorial service that complies with the rules for funerals and memorial services.
- holding a wedding service that complies with the rules for wedding services.
- Entertainment facilities, such as theatres, cinemas, music halls, concert halls and dance halls.
- Amusement centres, such as places to play billiards, pool, pinball machines or video games.
- Micro-breweries or small distilleries holding a drink on-premises authorisation under the Liquor Act 2007 or cellar door premises, except for selling food or beverages for people to consume off the premises.
- Indoor recreation facilities such as squash courts, indoor swimming pools, gyms, table tennis centres, health studios, bowling alleys and ice rinks.
- Places of public worship, except for the purposes of:
- conducting a funeral service or memorial service that complies with the rules for funerals and memorial services
- conducting a wedding service that complies with the rules for wedding services.
- Hairdressers, spas, nail salons, beauty salons, waxing salons, tanning salons, tattoo parlours, massage parlours.
- Auction houses, except for an auction for food supply, or a livestock, fibre or crop auction.
- Betting agencies and gaming lounges.
- Markets, except for food markets.
- Sex on premises services.
- Sex services premises.
- Strip clubs.
- Until the commencement of Monday 27 September 2021, public swimming pools, except natural swimming pools, which may open.
- National Trust properties and Historic Houses Trust of NSW properties.
Any business or place that is required to be closed is allowed to stay open to:
- provide a service to vulnerable people (such as a food bank or homeless shelter)
- being used by or on behalf of a Local Health District, Statutory Health Corporation, the Health Administration Corporation or the Ministry of Health as a vaccination clinic or vaccination hub, but only when it is being used for this purpose
- being used as an early education and care facility.
Rules for business that can stay open
If your business is permitted to stay open under the public health order, you must follow the rules in place including:
- COVID-19 Safety Plan requirements
- the square metres rules
- face masks rules
- mandatory check-in (for example, using QR codes).
Capacity rules for open businesses and premises
All premises in Greater Sydney that are not closed must comply with the 1 person per 4 square metres rule, except for the following exempted gatherings:
- Gathering at an airport that is necessary for the normal operation of the airport.
- For the purposes of or related to transportation including in vehicles, or at truck stops, stations, platforms or stops, or other public transportation facilities, but not including vehicles being used as a party bus.
- At hospitals or other medical or health service facilities where necessary for the normal operation of the facility.
- For the purposes of emergency services, including the provision of training by an emergency service.
- At a prison, correctional facility, youth justice centre or other place of custody.
- At a disability or aged care facility that is necessary for the operation of the facility
- At a Court or Tribunal.
- At Parliament for the purpose of its normal operations.
- At a supermarket, food market, grocery store, or shopping centre that is necessary for its normal operation.
- At a farm, mine, commercial fishing operation, or on a commercial vessel (excluding vessels providing tours or hosting functions) that is necessary for the normal operation of the tenants within the farm, mine, commercial fishing operation or commercial vessel.
- At a school, university, other educational institution or childcare facility that is necessary for the normal operation of the school, university, institution, or facility but does not include a school event that involves members of the community in addition to staff and students.
- At a hotel, motel or other accommodation facility that is necessary for the normal operation of accommodation services at the hotel, motel, or other facility.
- At an outdoor space for the purpose of transiting through the space eg. Pitt St Mall.
- To provide a service to assist vulnerable members of the public, including, for example, a food bank or a service providing for the needs of homeless persons.
- At premises that is necessary to provide the services of an early education and care facility.
Places that are allowed to be open must follow the relevant rules including:
- COVID-19 Safety Plan requirements
- face masks rules
- mandatory check-in (for example, using QR codes).
Temporary or holiday accommodation
If you are staying in temporary accommodation in Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong – including in short-term or holiday accommodation – you may stay at your accommodation until your booking expires.
When your booking expires, you may leave your accommodation to return to:
- your place of residence or
- other accommodation.
While you are staying in your temporary or holiday accommodation, you must continue to comply with the stay at home rules.
New NSW Covid lockdown restrictions: an update on the coronavirus guidelines in Sydney, rural NSW, and Canberra, ACT
The premier, Gladys Berejiklian, has announced that a curfew in the 12 greater Sydney hotspots has lifted as the state hit the 80% single dose vaccination milestone. She announced on 19 September that from Monday 20 September restrictions would be “equalised” across all of Sydney including the western suburbs previously under a harsher lockdown.
Earlier this month, she revealed a roadmap out of lockdown for the state, and an easing of restrictions for some parts of regional NSW.
From Saturday 11 September, parts of regional NSW that had seen zero Covid cases for at least 14 days emerged from lockdown. One of those areas, Yass Valley Council, was plunged back into a two-week lockdown from Tuesday 14 September after a new Covid case was detected.
When can you leave home?
From Saturday 11 September, residents in parts of regional NSW deemed “low risk” have been allowed to leave home and enjoy shopping, pubs, clubs and events.
However, for all other parts of the state, there is currently no change to the four essential reasons people are allowed to leave home:
- Shopping for food or other essential goods and services. You must shop within 5km of home if you are within greater Sydney. Browsing in shops is prohibited, and only one person per household, a day may leave the home for shopping.
- Medical care or compassionate needs, including getting a Covid-19 vaccine.
- Exercise outdoors in groups of two, who cannot travel further than 5km from their home or local government area.
- Essential work, or education, where you cannot work or study from home.
- To shop for essentials like groceries and medicine and supplies that are essential for personal needs or for vulnerable people.
- To obtain essential health care, including to undertake a Covid-19 test or receive scheduled vaccination.
- To exercise outdoors for two hours a day with your household or up to five people
- To provide essential caregiving services.
- To undertake essential work.
Further details for the ACT are available here.
What if I live outside the ACT but travel across the border for work?
The ACT has declared all of NSW as a Covid-19 hotspot. Residents who lived across the border in one of the following approved postcodes may enter the ACT for essential work and healthcare reasons without an exemption:
- 2581 Gunning, Collector
- 2582 Murrumbateman, Yass
- 2584 Binalong
- 2611 Uriarra
- 2618 Wallaroo, areas along the ACT’s north-western edge
- 2619 Jerrabomberra
- 2620 Queanbeyan, Googong, Karabar, Sutton, Gundaroo
- 2621 Bungendore
- 2623 Captains Flat
- 2626 Bredbo and Michelago
If you live outside these postcodes you will be required to seek an exemption.
If you live in the ACT but travel into NSW for work, you are expected to follow the rules of the ACT lockdown even when in NSW. You will also have to complete a new declaration form every 72 hours.