State governments have announced the easing of COVID-19 restrictions through a three-phase plan, including the reopening of schools and limited re-entry to pubs, cafes and restaurants. But, what does this mean for weddings?
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Here is the wedding legislation breakdown, by state:
New South Wales
The maximum number of people who may attend a wedding is the maximum number of people allowed on the premises, which is one person per 4 square metres.
Wedding services are no longer subject to separate limits, with the exception of a wedding at a place of residence (which can have the greater of 20 people or one person per 4 square metres of space).
People attending will be required to provide their name and contact details so that they can be used for contact tracing.
- Capacity must not exceed, to a maximum of one person per 4 square metres, 20 guests for a wedding service, excluding the couple, the persons involved in conducting the service and the photographer and the videographer.
- If you want to have singing or live music at the ceremony or reception, consider having solo singers, rather than group singing – which is higher risk, and consider alternatives to wind instruments (such as a flute, oboe or clarinet) which are also higher risk. When choosing the venue, make sure there is extra room for singers (at least 3 metres from other people).
- If you want to have dancing at the wedding, ensure this is restricted to only the bridal couple and the bridal party. Make sure to choose a venue that has a dancefloor area with enough space. Think about strategies to avoid crowding on the dancefloor and other areas such as avoiding or modifying rituals like throwing the bouquet or the Hora. Ensure people do not take alcoholic drinks onto the dancefloor.
- Consider seating guests from the same household next to each other, to make it easier to fit everyone safely together.
- Consider having photos taken before the ceremony (rather than in between the ceremony and reception) to decrease the amount of time between each.
From 11:59pm on 21 June, 20 people can attend a wedding in addition to the couple, and the celebrant. Children are counted in the person limit.
If a wedding is held in a home, the restrictions on private gatherings apply. This means up to 20 people, including the couple, are allowed. The celebrant, who is required for the service, is not included in the limit.
Venue operators or the celebrant at a wedding or funeral are required to request the first name and contact phone number of each person attending the wedding, and keep records for 28 days for contact tracing purposes.
A recreational facility such as a community hall can be used for a wedding. Weddings held at a community hall can have up to 20 people in attendance, in addition to the couple and the celebrant. The venue must apply the one person per four square metre rule.
From the 3rd of July, 100 pax weddings are permissible, in addition to the celebrant and the couple with social distancing and hygiene requirements in place.
You can have a wedding of up to 100 people.
South Australia will implement the two square metre rule per person for indoor gatherings, restaurants, bars and cafes when it moves to Stage 3 on Monday 29 June.
Up to 40 attendees can attend religious gatherings, ceremonies and instruction; non-denominational ceremonies; and similar services. This number excluding staff or volunteers present to facilitate the service or ceremony.
Services and venues involved in religious ceremonies, funerals and weddings must have a COVID-19 Workplace Safety Plan in place. This applies to both indoor and outdoor weddings.
Please note that additional changes to gathering limits (including weddings, funerals and religious ceremonies) will come into effect from midday Wednesday 17 June 2020. For more information visit Important Community Updates.
When planning the event, you should review all aspects that may increase the risk of COVID-19 transmission to inform the development of your COVID-19 Event Safety Plan PDF. The Plan should address the following essential criteria.
Provide key event details including (but not limited to):
- Organising body, contact name and position, phone and email
- Event title/s, event venue/s and location, time/s, date/s (including ‘side’ events)
- Event target group/s and expected number of attendees
- Whether the event is likely to be attended by 500 or more people
- Specify whether the event is indoor/outdoor/mixed.
Australian Capital Territory
Wedding ceremonies can now have up to 100 people (excluding those conducting the service or assisting in the conduct of the wedding) or one person per 4 square metres, whichever is lower.
Wedding celebrations should be held in accordance with rules for the hospitality sector.
Wedding and funeral organisers must keep a record of the names and contact numbers of individuals attending. Details can be safely destroyed after 28 days.
Last updated: 24th of June, 2020
Digital Content Coordinator: Zoe Kanlis
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