Current News - Coronavirus
With the tourism industry worldwide entering uncharted territory with the impacts of Coronavirus, Tourism Noosa has provided the following information for members. This information is aimed at helping you and your business be best prepared for these changes and will be regularly updated.
Please see below for links to official information, contact details for suppliers, tips and frequently asked questions.
If you have any concerns or helpful information to share with members, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Tourism Noosa Responds to COVID-19 | March 16, 2020.
To keep up to date with changing border restrictions, please see current border restrictions news here.
- Restrictions are in place for any person who has been in a declared COVID-19 hotspot in the 14 days prior to arriving in Queensland. Declared hot spots are:
- All areas of Victoria, and
- 34 Local Government Areas of NSW (including all regions of ‘Greater Sydney’) - see current hotspots here.
- Interstate travellers who have been in a hotspot in the 14 days prior to arriving in Queensland will not be granted entry. Returning Queenslanders must complete mandatory hotel quarantine at their own expense.
- Travellers can transit through a hotspot on their way to Queensland (e.g. travelling directly from regional NSW to Sydney Airport to fly to Queensland) under certain conditions. See Section 11 of the Public Health Direction.
- All travellers, including Queensland residents, must apply for a border pass prior to arriving in Queensland, whether by road, rail, air or otherwise.
What you can do: Help your guests understand the border pass requirements by linking them to the correct information. You could provide the link on your website, in your booking confirmation, or in an email shortly before they are due to travel.
CHANGES TO SEATED DINING AT DRINKING AT VENUES AND EVENTS
Changes came into effect on Friday, 24 July, reinstating the requirement for patrons to be seated while drinking and dining in any venue:
- Patrons can still order at the counter, but must be seated when eating or drinking.
- Takeaway service is still permitted.
- Food and beverages may only be consumed at the outlet where purchased if seating is provided.
- There is no requirement to be seated when consuming food and beverages if the patron moves on from the vending outlet.
- No buffet self-service.
- This includes pubs, licensed clubs, RSL clubs, function centres, bars, wineries, distilleries and microbreweries, licensed premises in hotels and community facilities.
- It also applies to both indoor and outdoor events.
Ensure you are familiar with the requirements of the Public Health Direction.
Another $100 million for small business recovery grants - get ready to apply!
Queensland small businesses impacted by COVID-19 are set to receive an additional $100 million in support to help them recover, under the Queensland Government's second round of the Small Business COVID-19 Adaption grants. Eligible small businesses will receive up to $10,000 to help survive and maintain and grow their staffing levels.Round one of the Small Business grants received an overwhelming response. Regional areas will be prioritised in the second round, receiving half of the available funding.
Grant applications open on 1 July and interested business owners are urged to read the eligibility guidelines now and ensure they have all the documentation ready to submit their application, as grants are allocated on a first-in basis.
For more information visit business.qld.gov.au
NEW EASING OF RESTRICTIONS IN QUEENSLAND FROM 1 JUNE 2020
Queensland's Stage Two easing of restrictions has been brought forward to Monday 1 June 2020. Highlights include:
- Tourism experiences and overnight stays are open throughout Queensland, for travel within Queensland
- Unlimited travel and overnight stays for Queenslanders across all of Queensland (no limit on kilometres travelled)
- Recreational travel, camping and accommodation including caravan parks can now open
- Tourism experiences for 20 people - more if following the approved Industry COVID Safe Plan
- Dining-in or seated drinks in restaurants, cafes, pubs, registered or licensed clubs, RSL Clubs, hotels and casinos (no gaming) for up to 20 patrons per room or defined area.
See the new ROADMAP TO EASING RESTRICTIONS, including frequently asked questions
For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 including government support, visit covid19.qld.gov.au
HAVE A QUESTION OR NEED HELP?
Businesses can contact the Queensland Government's dedicated hotline for questions specific to their business. Phone 134 COVID (134 268 43).
TOURISM ANSWERS: Email email@example.com, the Department of State Development, Tourism and Innovation's new dedicated team for COVID-safe planning for tourism businesses.
ALL COVID-SAFE BUSINESS PLANNING: covid19.qld.gov.au
teq.queensland.com: Website for tourism and events industry updates, including webinars with the experts.
TOURISM AND ACCOMMODATION INDUSTRY COVID-SAFE PLAN
The Queensland Health-approved Tourism and Accommodation Industry Covid-Safe Plan gives operators guidance to return to business with increased confidence in providing a COVID-safe work environment for staff and customers. The many criteria and conditions for businesses to comply with may seem onerous, but it’s vital that our industry offers visitors a safe environment where they can enjoy the best of Noosa.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR BUSINESS COVID-SAFE
A number of approved Industry COVID-Safe Plans are available for tourism businesses that would like to cater to more than the numbers stated on the Roadmap to Recovery (currently 20 patrons with no more than 1 patron per 4 sqm), including:
Businesses that comply with their approved industry plan can operate beyond the baseline restrictions.
The Queensland Tourism and Accommodation Plan contains recommendations and information on:
• Pre-screening for customers and staff
• Social distancing, including in shared spaces
• Recommendations and tips for cleaning and hygiene
• Staff safety
• What happens if there’s a confirmed COVID-19 case on business premises
• Additional training
• Approved options for tourism tours - and much more.
Please take the time to find out what’s required to make your business COVID-Safe. If you’re not sure about when you can operate, with how many patrons, and what documentation you need to have in place, use this simple online tool, the Tourism Industry Decision Tree.
REQUEST FOR TEMPORARY EXTENSION OF OUTDOOR DINING
If you are a business who has suffered significant reduction in your dining capacity due to COVID restrictions, and you meet certain criteria, you can submit an EOI to your local Business Association requesting a temporary approval of extended outdoor dining. If the Business Association supports your application, this will then be assessed by Council.
Please send this form to your local Business Association - see a list of local Business Associations here.
If the application is deemed satisfactory by the Business Association, assessment of the application is undertaken by Council. If you do not have a Business Association in your location please send directly to Anthony Dow, Economic Development Manager firstname.lastname@example.org
CHECK YOUR BUSINESS IS COVID-SAFE - RESOURCES FOR TOURISM AND EVENTS BUSINESSES
Please ensure your business is Covid-safe before reopening - check this voluntary checklist for businesses here.
The Department of State Development, Tourism and Innovation (DSDTI) has developed COVID-Safe resources for tourism businesses and operators:
- Tourism Industry Decision Tree - helps you understand when you can operate, with how many patrons, and what documentation you need to have in place
- Frequently Asked Questions for the tourism industry - including how to calculate how many patrons you can have on a boat or bus, rules for ferry operations, and sector-specific questions
- Fact sheet - COVID Safe Planning for tourism and events businesses - understand which industry association is writing which industry plans, what you need to do if you'd like to have more than 20 patrons, and how events need to develop COVID Safe Plans.
For more information on COVID-Safe Businesses, COVID Safe Training and Business Support, see DSDTI's COVID Safe Special Edition Newsletter for Tourism Businesses and Industry.
The Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC) COVID Clean Practicing Business program is now live, and is designed to support businesses in their efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 and to provide an assurance to visitors that these steps are being taken. Learn more here.
COVID-Safe Checklists before reopening:
Dine-in restaurants and cafes, and beauty therapy services
The Queensland Government advises that eateries providing dining-in for customers, as well as beauty therapy services must complete the new COVID-Safe Checklist before reopening, and display a signed checklist.
This includes restaurants, cafes, pubs, RSLs, clubs and hotels (food courts remain closed). All staff in these businesses must also complete mandatory COVID-safe training through TAFE Queensland within two weeks of your business commencing.
If you do not offer these services, you do not need to complete a checklist. All businesses should, however, be following the work health and safety guidelines.
Please see below important information and links from Noosa Council regarding the requirements.
To assist those who are opening in Stage 1, please find below State Government information to ensure a COVID-safe opening.
Key points for businesses reopening
• You are required to complete and display the COVID-Safe Checklist (see links above) before trading.
• These checklists tell you what you need to do if you are a business in the two categories (i.e. Restaurants, Cafes, etc and Beauty Therapy services) to be COVID Safe. The checklists from State Government include input resulting from consultation with key industry stakeholders.
• You must check that all Workplace Health Safety requirements for COVID 19 are also met. Information is available on the work health and safety guidelines.
• You must complete the Checklist to ensure you comply with essential health requirements to enable you to open and provide a safe environment for your customers and your staff.
• You must complete, sign and display the checklist in a prominent, visible location at your business premises.
• You are not required to submit this checklist to Queensland Health, however a relevant enforcement officer can check compliance at any time and/or may ask for a copy of the signed checklist.
• Your staff must complete mandatory COVID Safe mandatory training within two weeks of your business commencing. Staff that commence with your business after this two-week period must complete this training before commencing. The training program will be made available soon. Register for the training here. You will be notified once the training is online.
Source: Covid 19 website
COVID-Safe Checklists are required for businesses that provide dining-in for customers, such as restaurants, cafes, pubs, RSLs, clubs, and hotels (food courts remain closed) and beauty therapy services.
The checklists address the following areas:
• Check that your business can reopen
• Wellbeing of workers
• Social distancing
• Record keeping
• Hygiene and cleaning
• Deliveries, contractors and visitors attending the premises
• Review and monitor
All businesses should be following the work health and safety guidelines.
Council’s Environmental Health team, together with Economic Development, have been supporting businesses to understand and prepare for the implementation of the State Government’s COVID-19 directives. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email Council or call Council’s Customer Service Centre on 5329 6500.
Please adhere to the rules to ensure a quicker road to normality and keep people safe.
COVID-Safe mandatory training
An online training program has been developed to provide all staff in industries requiring a COVID-safe checklist with training which will allow them to help ensure a COVID-safe work environment. This training is mandatory and must be completed within two weeks of a business opening/reopening. Staff who commence with your business after this two-week period must complete this training before starting work.
The COVID-safe training programs is now available online for dining services and beauty therapy services through TAFE Queensland: tafeqld.edu.au/covid-safe.
WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION
Latest updates from WHO
Please check in with Queensland Health's updates daily: QUEENSLAND HEALTH
The lead agency for updates: QLD GOVT
LATEST INDUSTRY SUPPORT RESOURCES - including:
- Who to contact in the Queensland and Australian Governments
- Information for COVID-safe workplaces
- Movement restrictions
- Travel and accommodation
- Help for businesses and sole traders - see the COVID-19 Business Assistance Finder
- Supporting staff
- Tourism business support
Support for business: BUSINESS QUEENSLAND
Tourism and Events Queensland: UPDATES FOR QUEENSLAND'S TOURISM INDUSTRY
Latest health alerts: AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT HEALTH ALERTS
Noosa Council is working closely with Queensland Health who is the lead agency and is taking extra precautionary measures to reduce the COVID-19 risk to residents and visitors at Council-owned facilities:
Highlights from Noosa Council:
- Noosa Council's Economic Development Grant Program supports business groups and the business community with funding for the delivery of projects that will have a positive impact on the local business environment and the local economy. This includes quick response grants up to $2000 - see the guidelines and information here.
- Most of Noosa’s community facilities reopen on Monday 15 June, with public health plans in place. The Noosa Aquatic Centre, Leisure Centre and Noosaville and Cooroy Libraries have limits on the number of people attending the facilities.
- Noosa Regional Gallery has reopened from Tuesday to Saturday, Cooroy Butter Factory Arts Centre's artisan store is now open. The J remains closed.
- Laguna Lookout and the Noosa National Park car park are open.
- Most parks and playgrounds have reopened including Pirate Playground, Gympie Terrace; Peregian Beach Park Playground; Apex Park Playground, Cooroy; Splash Park (waterplay), Tewantin; skate parks in Sunshine Beach, Peregian Beach, Cooran, Pomona and Cooroy; park shelters; outdoor fitness equipment and electric BBQs.
- Noosa River Holiday Park and Boreen Point Campground are open. Noosa North Shore Campground reopens on Friday 19 June. COVID-Safe Plans are in place, and new guidelines have been introduced to keep everyone safe. The parks are operating at a reduced capacity to ensure they adhere to health directives.
- Help for not-for-profit community groups and organisations - find out more here.
- Public toilets remain open and Council has increased its cleaning of the facilities and continues to provide hand soap.
- Local businesses that have shut down or scaled back can request an immediate stop on waste services to save on costs - email email@example.com
- The customer service counter in Tewantin has reopened. Or phone 07 5329 6500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Business support package including waived fees and refunds across wedding and event permit cancellations; a moratorium on fees and charges for footpath dining and commercial permit fees; and rent relief for tenants of council-owned properties. READ MORE HERE
- If you require further support, have any feedback or concerns, we encourage all business owners to connect with their relevant Business Association
- Noosa Council has established a Noosa Business Facebook page outlining the range of measures and programs that are available to support our local business community.
- See Council’s Business and COVID-19 page for support initiatives from all levels of government; industry information; and Buy Local information
- Council will fast-track payments to local suppliers to inject much-needed funds into the local economy. READ MORE HERE
- Ensuring key contractors such as garbage collection and cleaning can continue to provide services.
QUEENSLAND PARKS AND WILDLIFE SERVICE (information on national parks, state forests and recreation areas):
- All national park and forest day use areas and walking tracks have reopened, except for some popular rock pool destinations. This includes Noosa National Park tracks and Wooroi Day Use Area. The Noosa National Park car park and barbecue facilities and information centre in the day use area remain closed.
- Recreation Areas including K’gari (Fraser Island) are open for day use visitors, camping and overnight stays.
- Cooloola Recreation Area has now reopened for vehicle access and camping. Campers must have both a written approval to enter the restricted access area and a valid vehicle access permit - book at qld.gov.au/camping. Day visitors require a COVID-19 Restricted Access Area Authority from qpws.bookeasy.com and a current vehicle access permit (which can only be used only for the dates of the COVID-19 Restricted Access Area Authority).
- All camping areas and camp sites have now reopened.
Vehicle access permit and camping bookings are available at the Queensland Parks website.
- Tourism Australia's weekly tourism webinar series kicks off on Friday 27 March to keep the industry connected and informed.
- ATEC responds to Australian Government's second stimulus package
- Flights cut - Virgin Australia will temporarily suspend services to Sunshine Coast Airport from midnight 27 March
- Latest travel alerts and restrictions
- Tourism Australia international news and one-stop help page with information on support and relief assistance for tourism businesses