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Dublin: 7°C Wednesday 28 October 2020

Covid-19 Level 3 (plus): Here are the changes that come into force for Dubliners at midnight

The capital is facing additional measures on top of the stated Level 3 restrictions.

003 Phoenix Park Phoenix Park in Dublin during the April lockdown. Source: RollingNews.ie

IT’S NOW BEEN confirmed that Dublin is to be moved to Level 3 of Covid-19 restrictions for the next three weeks.

The move was widely anticipated and comes following advice from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) yesterday. 

In addition however, there are to be a number of additional restrictions placed on Dubliners beyond the previously stated Level 3 measures.

Dublin faced other “additional measures” when it was placed at Level 2 on Tuesday. 

So what exactly changes for Dubliners when the new level comes into effect from midnight?

87598_fba3e092-8f8d-4441-8945-8842459df73c-page-001 Source: gov.ie

Home visitors

Was: Just one visiting household up to six people
Now: Just one visiting household up to six people

Dubliners were already living under stricter measure in terms of visitors to homes compared to elsewhere in the country, so this won’t change under the new alert level. 

It essentially means that visitors from just one other household can visit your home.

Social gatherings

Was: Just two households up to six people can meet in other settings
Now: No social or family gatherings should take place in other settings

The government’s plan states that no social or family gatherings should take place in ‘other settings’.

Speaking at a government briefing following tonight’s announcement, Acting Chief Medical Officer Ronan Glynn said people from two households could meet in another setting, such as outside in a park. 

Bars, cafés and restaurants

010 Garda Powers A closed pub in Temple Bar Source: RollingNews.ie

Was: Wet pubs closed but restaurants open with measures in place
Now: Indoor restaurants closed to patrons, take away or delivery only. Outdoor dining up to 15 patrons. Wet pubs remain closed.

This measure has provoked significant opposition since the advice from NPHET was reported last night, with businesses saying it could leave them in dire financial circumstances. 

It’s now been confirmed that the government has decided to follow the advice and patrons will not be allowed dine in restaurants.  


shutterstock_768169024 File photo Source: Shutterstock

Was: Up to 50 guests allowed
Now: Up to 25 guests allowed

Weddings are in effect an exception to rules around social gatherings, with the government saying these events require significant planning and that therefore some kind of reassurance is required. 

Despite Level Three coming into effect from midnight, the reduction in numbers for weddings will not kick in until Monday. 


Was: Up to 50 mourners 
Now: Up to 25 mourners

Religious services

Was: Up to 50 worshippers in attendance
Now: No worshippers present, services streamed online

Organised indoor events (e.g. theatre, cinema)

Was: Up to 50 or 100 people depending on the size of venue
Now: Events should not take place 

Sporting matches or large events

garry-ringrose Leinster players in the Aviva Stadium ahead of tomorrow's match against Saracens. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Was: Up to 100 people can attend
Now: No matches/events can take place (with some exceptions)

This means a significant change for sport in the capital, with sporting organisations earlier telling an Oireachtas Committee that they need additional support.

Despite matches being effectively banned from taking place for most people, there is an exemption for professional/elite sports that can continue to be played behind closed doors. 

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Sports training

Was: Up to 15 people outdoors, six indoors
Now: Non contact training outdoors only up to 15 people

Gym/leisure centres/swimming pools

Was: Open with measures in place such as social distancing
Now: Open for individuals, no classes allowed


90364127 National Museum of Ireland at Collins Barracks in Dublin. Source: Leah FarrellRollingNews.ie

Was: Open with protective measures
Now: All venues must close

Working from home

Was: If possible, attend for essential meetings
Now: Work from home unless absolutely necessary

Third-level colleges

Was: Should consider enhanced protective measures
Now: Escalate all measures and limit congregation

Dublin’s four universities announced earlier that they have decided to go further than the required advice, announcing that they had suspended the majority of on-campus activities and moved classes online.

UCD, Trinity College, DCU and TU Dublin announced that all teaching and learning will be online except for practical workshop and lab-based tuition that cannot be done remotely.

Travel outside Dublin

005 Dublin signs Motorway signs near Dublin. Source: Eamonn Farrell/Rollingnews.ie

Was: People encouraged not to leave Dublin if possible
Now: People should only leave or enter the county for work, education or other essential reasons (such as caring for a relative)

People aged over 70 and those medically vulnerable

Was: Exercise judgement regarding engaging with other people
Now: Exercise judgement. Stay at home as much as possible and limit social contacts

Long-term residential care facilities (e.g. nursing homes) 

Was: Open for visits with enhanced protective measures
Now: Visits suspended apart from critical or compassionate grounds

About the author:

Rónán Duffy

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