The Public Activities COVID-19 Direction is in effect.

On this page

How everyone is affected

How businesses are affected

Defined public activities

Restricted activities

Maximum occupancy requirements for Defined public activities

Contact tracing

Restricted businesses

Excluded businesses

How everyone is affected

The total number of people at a place must not exceed 1 person per 2 square metres.

Physical distancing, or social distancing principles apply. Every person should attempt to stay at least 1.5 metres from other members of the public. However, this does not apply to people who live together, who are friends or family members, or people who regularly associate with each other.

Wearing a face mask is not mandatory, but it is recommended to wear a mask when out in public if you are unable to physically distance.

People offering personal care services must wear appropriate personal protective equipment while providing personal care services such as:

  • hairdressers, barbershops, beauty and nail salons, tattoo parlours, wellness centres/day spas/massage parlours, saunas/bathhouses and any other place which beauty therapy/tanning/waxing/piercing/body modification takes place.

All care providers, patients, clients, administrative and other staff, employees, visitors, students, contractors and any other person on the premises must wear a face mask (covering mouth and nose) at all times when in the physical presence of other persons on the premises.

Note the following exceptions:

  • A patient or client and/or a person providing care is not required to wear a mask if, in the provider or carer’s professional opinion, or in the opinion of the service organisation providing the service, the wearing of a mask will hinder the provision of the relevant care and/or impact patient or client safety.
  • A person is not required to wear a mask if they have a relevant medical condition, including problems with their breathing, a serious condition of the face, a disability or a mental health condition.
  • A mask is not required to be worn in circumstances where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication, such as to enable communication by or with any person who is deaf or hard of hearing.
  • A patient or client under the age of 12 is not required to wear a mask.
  • A resident or live-in staff member of a residential care facility is not required to wear a mask, including in circumstances in which it is not possible to comply with the physical distancing principle.


The following gathering provisions apply:

Private function (including wedding and funerals)

200 people, maximum 1 person per 2 square metres

Private functions include weddings, funerals, parties or any other function which is by invite only that is held at licensed premises. The function must be in a designated area which has no public access and where possible separate bathroom facilities from the rest of the venue.

Guests must use their best endeavours to remain segregated from other patrons at the premises. Food and beverages must have no shared utensils but can be consumed while standing. Dancing is also permitted.

Private residence

50 people per house

Private place

200 people maximum

How businesses are affected

Covid-Safe Plan

All businesses that conduct a Defined public activity must have a COVID-Safe Plan.

Some Defined public activities require a business to complete contact tracing records.

Covid Management Plan

Some high-risk public activities require a COVID Management Plan, approved by SA Health.

COVID Marshals

COVID Marshals are required across a number of industry sectors to ensure venue capacity, physical distancing and infection control requirements are met.

Defined public activities

A defined public activity means:

  • onsite purchase and consumption of food or beverages (whether occurring in an indoor or outdoor area)
  • sport (including sports training), fitness or recreation activities
  • indoor public meetings
  • ceremonies
  • private functions
  • provision of personal care services
  • provision of public entertainment
  • provision of recreational transport
  • the operation of a nightclub
  • the operation of relevant licensed premises
  • the operation of a casino or gaming area (within the meaning of the Gaming Machines Act 1992)
  • auctions and inspections of premises for the purpose of sale or rental of any property
  • driver instruction
  • an assembly within the meaning of the Public Assemblies Act 1972
  • the provision of health care, residential care, disability support or aged care services.

Maximum occupancy requirements for Defined public activities

The density requirement of 1 person per 2 square metres applies for all defined public activities.

The maximum number of attendees at a place of business will be determined by its size.

These requirements apply only to patrons, not staff.

Contact tracing

COVID-SAfe Check-In is a new feature that has been added to the free mySA GOV app. If someone in South Australia tests positive to COVID-19, the COVID-SAfe Check in enables SA Health to quickly contact others who may have been exposed to the virus and stop the spread of COVID-19.

From 14 December, any defined public activity which requires a COVID Safe Plan and general retail premises must use an approved contact tracing system which includes the COVID-SAfe Check in, Scan Tek or any other electronic platform which is approved by the state coordinator.

Those who have a COVID Safe Plan will be issued with a QR code which will be attached to the approved plan and must be displayed in the premises/business/venue.

A person who participates in a defined public activity or who enters a venue must upload their relevant contact details. If the system is not working or the person is unable to upload their details they must provide their details to the venue operator and these details must be retained.

Contact tracing records must be presented at the request of an authorised officer and may not be used retained for any other purpose.

In circumstances in which it might not be possible for the person attending the activity to provide their contact details, a carer/companion of the person attending may record or provide the relevant contact details on behalf of the person attending.

Contact tracing record for attendance at public activities (PDF, 185.1 KB)

Restrictions on businesses

See Business restrictions and closures for more information on businesses restrictions.

Where businesses may now open, some restrictions apply.

  • No shared utensils may be provided in the course of providing the service of any food or beverages.
  • No communal food or beverage service areas may operate, this includes buffets, salad bars or or sauce dispensers
  • No re-usable equipment, such as ‘hookah’ or other pipes, tubes, heads or any other equipment associated with the operation of shisha, smoking or vaping at the place may be used.

Excluded businesses

A number of locations and activities are excluded from the Direction on public activities, including:

  • airports
  • public transport
  • medical or health services, including hospitals
  • emergency services
  • disability, aged care or residential facilities
  • prisons, correctional facilities or training centres
  • courts or tribunals
  • Parliament or Government House
  • council meetings (although members of the public attending must adhere to maximum occupancy and density requirements)
  • food markets, supermarkets, grocery stores, retail stores or shopping centres
  • workplaces, including offices, factories, laboratories, repair or maintenance premises (workshops), mining or construction sites, waste disposal or processing facilities
  • land or vessels used in the production or treatment of primary produce
  • schools, universities, educational institutions and childcare facilities
  • accommodation facilities such as hotels or motels
  • where people are transiting through a place (such as Rundle Mall)
  • any other gathering deemed exempt by the State Coordinator.

More information

See the Direction on Public Activities for details.

Page last updated: 16 December 2020