For many Australians, it’s going to be a very different Father’s Day this year given the coronavirus pandemic.
Social-distancing restrictions mean the usual family get-togethers this coming Sunday may not be possible, while travel restrictions mean many of us won’t be able to get across state borders to visit our families in person.
To help remind you of what you can still do, we’ve put together this state-by-state guide.
And a quick tip before you read on: if you missed Australia Post’s cut-off dates when sending your present or card, make sure to tell your dad you didn’t forget them!
Premier Daniel Andrews says the roadmap for eased restrictions in Victoria will be announced on September 6, the same day as Father’s Day.
That means any family events in the state will have to take place under the current restrictions.
So for people living in metropolitan Melbourne, stage 4 restrictions apply — and unfortunately, social visits to family don’t fall under one of the three reasons you can leave your home.
For people living in regional Victoria, stage 3 restrictions apply — and again, social visits don’t fall under one of the four reasons you can leave your home.
Additionally, in case it wasn’t clear, there are only a few acceptable reasons you can travel into metropolitan Melbourne and socialising isn’t one of them.
Throughout Victoria, restaurants and cafes are open for takeaway and delivery only.
In metropolitan Melbourne, you can only travel up to 5 kilometres to pick up your food and drink, and you can only do this between 5:00am and 8:00pm.
New South Wales
Travel within New South Wales is not restricted for residents of the state.
As well, the only Australians that New South Wales restricts from entering are NSW-Victoria border restriction.
Now, as to what your Father’s Day gathering can look like:
- A total of 20 people (including adults and children) can visit another household at any particular time — and there’s no cap on how many people can visit a particular household over the course of a day
- For outdoor public gatherings, the limit is 20 people
- At venues, while there’s a maximum of 300 people, the limit per table or per booking is 10 people
- There’s a limit of 20 people for holiday homes or rentals (though this limit can be broken if everyone is from the same household)
However, while 20 visitors at households is the rule, NSW household gathering restrictions.
Canberrans are being urged not to travel anywhere with COVID-19 outbreaks — currently, that includes all of Victoria and Greater Sydney.
People from coronavirus-affected areas are likewise being “strongly discouraged” from travelling to the ACT.
Coming to the territory from Victoria specifically is banned with the exception of returning ACT residents, who can do so by air but must complete two weeks of quarantine.
Within the ACT, these are the restrictions you’ll face for any Father’s Day plans you have:
- There are no limits on how many people can visit your home
- There’s a limit of 100 people at public gatherings — and there must be 4 square metres for every person
The Queensland border is closed to anyone who has been in New South Wales, Victoria and the ACT in the past 14 days (though there is a Queensland-NSW border bubble).
So that rules out a quick Byron Bay day trip: you won’t be able to get back via road, and you’d need to quarantine for two weeks at your own expense upon your return.
Within Queensland, there are no travel restrictions, but there are still restrictions on social gatherings.
For listed Local Government Areas (including Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Ipswich, Logan and the Darling Downs), these restrictions include:
- Having a maximum of 10 people in your home, including the residents — that means no visitors if your household has 10 or more people
- Having a maximum of 10 people at public gatherings
Elsewhere in the state, the restrictions include:
- Having a maximum of 30 people in your home
- Having a maximum of 30 people at public gatherings
Victorians are banned from entering South Australia, though there is a “buffer zone” for border communities.
If you’re coming from the ACT or New South Wales, you need to self-quarantine for two weeks after entering South Australia and get tested for COVID-19 twice — on the first and 12th days (however, again, there are particular special rules for border communities).
There are no restrictions on entering the state for anyone coming from the Northern Territory, Queensland, Tasmania or Western Australia, but you do still need to complete your “Cross Border Travel Registration” (the advice is that this should be completed “at least three days before you leave”, which wouldn’t be possible for a last-minute Father’s Day trip).
If you’re already in South Australia, you can freely go anywhere in the state.
As for what your plans can look like for Father’s Day:
- You can have 50 people at a home gathering
- You can have no more than 100 people at a private place that’s not a home
There’s still a hard border stopping everyone but exempt travellers from entering Western Australia.
But if you’re already in the state, the good news for your Father’s Day plans is that there are no hard limits on how many people can attend gatherings (though there must still be 2 square metres for every person).
Travel around Western Australia is also unrestricted, with the exception of remote Aboriginal communities.
Tasmania’s border is still basically closed.
Victorians are banned from entering the state, and all non-essential travellers are required to quarantine for two weeks upon arrival — that includes returning Tasmanians.
There’s no restriction on travel within Tasmania, however.
As for any Father’s Day events you’re planning for your home, there’s a limit of 20 people (but that doesn’t include the residents of the household).
- 250 people indoors
- 500 people outdoors
In both scenarios, there’s a limit of one person for every 2 square metres.
The Northern Territory’s border is open to Australians who haven’t been in declared coronavirus hotspots in the previous two weeks.
You need to fill in a border entry form and sign a declaration once you get there.
However, if you have been to a declared coronavirus hotspot in the previous two weeks, you have to go into supervised quarantine at your own cost once getting to the territory.
Within the Northern Territory, there are currently no hard limits on numbers at gatherings (though physical distancing should be maintained).