Restrictions on gatherings will be eased from tomorrow (8 October),
as the Covid-19 Alert level for Auckland, New Zealand's largest city, is
reduced to Level 1 status. This means the city's business events
industry is once again open to domestic groups, with gatherings of 100
allowed (instead of just 10) and Aucklanders also free to enter any
“[Monday’s] announcement by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern dispels all
confusion about who can meet and where. We have been given the green
light to meet… [so] now is the time to rebuild the industry, and deliver
confidence back to organisers who have been holding off planning and
booking their events,” said Conventions and Incentives New Zealand
(CINZ) Chief Executive, Lisa Hopkins.
Under Alert Level 1, there’ll be no limits on gatherings, and social
distancing requirements in restaurants and bars removed. Masks are not
required on public transport but still encouraged, while the use of the
Covid tracking app and businesses displaying QR codes are both still
The New Zealand government had previously given the green light for large events
with separate groups of 100 on a country-wide level, starting from May
30 earlier this year. With the lifting of restrictions on social
distancing in the country, CINZ and MBIE (NZ Major Events) swiftly
proceeded next with a new Voluntary Code for event organisers in June.
However in August, an unexpected surge of Covid-19 cases in
Auckland’s community resulted in drastic moves to halt travel in and
out, as well as strict bans on personal movement and gathering
restrictions. Auckland remained in Alert Level 3 since August, later
shifting to Level 2 on September 23, while the rest of New Zealand moved
to Alert Level 1 two weeks ago.
With Prime Minister Ardern’s announcement, CINZ Chief Hopkins hopes
to spread the message that “it is safe to hold a conference, seminar,
workshop, or team recognition event. We want people to understand that
business events are the safest type of event that can be held, backed up
by the World Health Organisation itself”.
Looking ahead, CINZ is in the midst of planning BE Reconnected, a one-day industry event in December to help kickstart business recovery.
“BE Reconnected will be an essential platform to support the sector
now and beyond. It is imperative for the good of the country and for the
industry that we now move forward safely, and with assurance,” said