Maltese Government unveils COVID-19 reopening plan in stages until June 2021

The Maltese Government unveiled today the COVID-19 reopening plan for the next 5 weeks. From Monday 10 May, Restaurant and Snack bars can stay open until 5pm midnight, take-away service and deliveries up to midnight. From 24 May Restaurants and Snack bars can stay open till midnight. Also from 24 May, Pools and Spas can reopen until 8pm for swimming only.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Health Dr Chris Fearne and Superintendent of Public Health Prof Charmaine Gauci announced the easing of measures in an updated timeline during a news conference earlier this morning, just days ahead of the reopening of restaurants and snack bars on Monday. On the same day, travel to Gozo will also resume and non-contact sport will continue.

Dr Fearne urges people to keep their guard up and stresses the importance of wearing masks. Hopefully, he says, masks will not remain mandatory in the coming months.

On the recent controversy on wearing masks on beaches, Dr Fearne said that although it is recommended to wear the mask at all times in public, however the law will not be enforced for practical reasons at beaches and pools.

The new protocols and guidelines for the reopening of restaurants and snack bars will be published shortly, however Prof Gauci listed some of them as follows:

From 10th May, licensed Restaurants and Snack Bars:

  • will be allowed to open until 5pm
  • from 5pm till midnight, take-away and delivery services only.
  • Hotels may serve plated breakfast and lunch at their restaurants
  • buffets and/or self-service and/or self-service dispensers not allowed
  • Hotels after 5pm, room service or delivery only until midnight.
  • from midnight up to 5am, all catering establishments must be closed.
  • Masks must be worn all times but can be removed when seated only.
  • Table max 4pax, unless from the same household.
  • Indoors and Outdoors tables – 2 meters apart.
  • Menus single use, or covered with plastic or glass, and must be sanitized before use
  • Alcohol can be served only with meals for licensed Restaurants and Snack Bars.

Deputy Prime Minister Dr Fearne announced the plan to lift COVID-19 restrictions, however warned that all this will depend on maintaining low numbers.

17 May:

  • The elderly will be allowed more visitors, for longer periods.

24 May:

  • Restaurant and snack bars can stay open until midnight
  • Swimming pools can be opened until 8pm; there should be no non-swimming activities
  • Open gyms; classes will not be held unless otherwise announced.
  • Contact sports can resume for people over 17 years old.

1 June:

  • Malta would accept tourists with a vaccination certificate or who have submitted a negative test before boarding the aircraft.
  • Masks may not be worn on the beaches and pools from 1 June
  • Weddings up to 100 inside and 300 outside will be able to go ahead. No Buffets, seated only.
  • English language schools will be allowed to open.

7 June:

  • Restaurant and snack bars can increase the number of people on each table from 4 to 6
  • Cinemas and theatres can open
  • Bars and clubs can open.
  • Team sports can go ahead without spectators.
  • Contact sports for children and youths can resume.
  • Betting outlets can open.
  • Summer schools can open.

On mass activities, Dr Fearne said they would not take place in early summer. He said the situation must be observed before a decision can be made on this.

In the coming days the Economy Minister will announce when the Government Vouchers will be handed out.

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