South Coast businesses welcome easing of restrictions

 CRED VillageCentre BridgePlaza 1

Unvaccinated people are now free to shop and socialise on the south coast and across New South Wales.

The state government has significantly eased COVID-19 restrictions despite a rise in COVID-19 case numbers amid super-spreading events in the festive season.

For the first time in three months, the same set of rules now applies to the vaccinated and the unvaccinated in NSW.

Masks are now only required in certain places including on public transport and in airports.

The NSW Health website states masks will be strongly encouraged in settings where people cannot social distance.

QR code check-ins will be scaled back and are only required in high-risk settings like public transport, planes, hospitals, aged and disability care facilities, gyms, places of worship, memorial services, personal services, pubs, bars and clubs, as well as indoor music festivals.

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Aaron Brown from the Batemans Bay Soldiers Club said the club's customers will still need to check-in.

"From today both vaccinated and unvaccinated patrons are allowed into the club, we're welcoming everybody," Mr Brown said.

"You don't have to show your vaccination certificate on entry but you do still need to check in with your QR at Service NSW on your phone or we can help you at the reception desk."

There's no cap on visitors in homes, hospitality venues, or on numbers at outdoor public gatherings.

Business NSW says dropping the QR check-in requirement to enter shops, and ditching the requirement for customers to show their vaccination status, will give business owners a much-needed boost in the countdown to Christmas.

"This is the early Christmas present business owners and their employees have been waiting for," Business NSW Chief Executive Daniel Hunter said on Wednesday.

The live music scene will be bolstered by the news as well, with singing and dancing permitted indoors and outdoors for all and no person limit for entertainment and recreation facilities or any outdoor public gathering apart from music festivals which are capped at 20,000 people.

Live Music CRED ClubSapphire

CEO at Club Sapphire in Merimbula, Damien Foley, said as a live music venue, they're welcoming the relaxing of rules.

"It (the relaxing of rules) means everything," Mr Foley said.

"The auditorium for instance has been operating under restrictions as far as the number of people allowed in it," he said.

"With them being lifted that really makes the live entertainment, the big shows viable again, so we're certainly looking forward to being able to reintroduce them as soon as we can."

See the full list of eased restrictions HERE.

Image Credit: Village Centre and Bridge Plaza, Batemans Bay Soldiers Club, Club Sapphire