Explainer: What will the new restrictions mean for me? 

Explainer: What will the new restrictions mean for me? 

Non-essential retail may remain open, but the retail sector will be requested to defer January sales events. 

The Government has announced that from midnight on 24 December until 12 January, Level 5 restrictions will apply nationally.

There will be a number of specific adjustments to Level 5 and, the Government said “certain transitional arrangements” will apply during the Christmas period.

What will the new restrictions mean?

The adjustments to Level 5 are as follows:

  • Non-essential retail may remain open, but the retail sector will be requested to defer January sales events 
  • Gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools may remain open for individual training only outdoor 
  • Golf and tennis are permitted 
  • Hotels may only open for essential non-social and non-tourist purposes except for guests who already have a booking and are due to check in up to and including 26 December 
  • People must remain within your county (as opposed to within 5km of your home) apart from travel for work, education or other essential purposes 
  • Non-contact training in pods of up to 15 may take place outdoors 
  • No matches/events should take place except for professional and elite sports and horse racing and greyhound racing behind closed doors 

Transitional arrangements for the Christmas period include:

  • From 3pm on 24 December, restaurants and pubs operating as restaurants will close - hotels may provide food and bar services to guests only after that point 
  • Up to and including 26 December, visits from up to 2 other households will be permitted 
  • Up to and including 31 December, visits from one other household will be permitted 
  • From 1 January no visitors are permitted in private homes/gardens (except for essential family reasons) 
  • Travel outside your county will continue to be permitted up to and including 26 December. People who are away from their place of residence after that period will be permitted to return to their place of residence 
  • The current restrictions on travel from Britain to Ireland should remain in place until at least 31 December, but kept under constant review in the light of unfolding information and circumstances.
  • Christmas religious services may take place, but will move online after 25 December when places of worship may remain open for private prayer 
  • Up to and including 2 January 2020, there can be 25 people at a wedding and from 3 January there can be six people at a wedding. 

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