Shortly after Hong Kong lifted the PCR test requirement for international arrivals, the government scrapped all the social distancing restrictions.

Having rolled back mass testing and mandatory quarantine, the government is now scrapping other preventive measures, including contact tracing. John Lee, chief executive of China’s HKSAR, announced that Hong Kong would lift all social distancing measures, including outdoor gathering limits. However, wearing a mask would still be mandatory in public. If the authorities catch you violating the mask-wearing rule, you may have to pay a penalty of up to $10,000.

Residents can remove the mask in country parks or while jogging and exercising in indoor and outdoor centres.

Hong Kong COVID restrictions: The government has relaxed dining-out rules

You can finally plan that family dinner as the government is also lifting all restrictions on people sharing a table and gatherings. In addition, visitors and residents will no longer need to scan the vaccine pass while entering the restaurant premises. Finally, bars will remove previously existing regulations for maximum table capacity. So, get those party poppers poised!

Note: The government does not allow eating and drinking on public transport.

Cinemas will operate at full capacity

Cinema lovers rejoice as theatres can now operate at full capacity. You can also munch on that popcorn as the government gave a green signal to eating and drinking during movies.

The welcome move comes amid a high vaccination rate in Hong Kong, which creates an overall barrier against the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, Hong Kong has a sufficient supply of anti-epidemic medicines. Furthermore, Hong Kong’s hospital authority has strengthened its capacity with skilful medical staff.

Photo credit: M+ Cinema House 1

The government has advised overseas travellers from China’s mainland, Macao and Taiwan to take rapid antigen tests for five days in a roll. Lo Chung-Mau, health secretary of the HKSAR government, clarified that cancelling all mandatory entry tests was aimed at allowing hassle-free travel between Hong Kong and the mainland. Many celebrated the long-awaited relaxation on travel. Searches for popular overseas tourist destinations jumped with the announcement of the relaxation of Hong Kong COVID restrictions.

(Hero and feature image credits: Pexels)

This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Hong Kong