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No dine-in and other strict new measures take effect today

29 July 2020

By The SUN

The dine-in section of this Jollibee outlet has been roped in, in compliance with the new rules

Hong Kong has stopped dine-in services at all restaurants and other eating establishments from today, Jul 29, as part of new measures to stop the surge in coronavirus cases.

The harshest restrictions ever imposed to stop the contagion took effect as the total number of Covid-19 cases in Hong Kong topped 3,000. They will remain in force for a week, unless extended.

The ban on dining in left a number of people grumbling, especially construction workers and those who don’t work in an office, as they were forced to eat their lunch outdoors, with social distancing measures kept firmly in check.
Another measure that took effect today was the wearing of face masks in all public places, whether indoors or outdoors.

While most people didn’t have problems complying, as masks have become a way of life in Hong Kong since the outbreak began in January, those who exercise outdoors, especially joggers, complained of not being able to breathe.
Not a few were seen taking off their masks, even at the risk of incurring a summary fine of $2,000, or up to $5,000 if they choose to contest the prosecution.

The only people exempted from the prohibition are kids aged 2 and below, or those with physical or mental illness.

Those who need to eat, drink, or take medication are also allowed to take off their masks just long enough to complete the task.
A face mask must be worn in all public places, even by those who are exercising

Previously, mask-wearing was mandated only on public transportations and in public places such as supermarkets and restaurants where people stand or sit in close proximity.

Now the ban extends even to building lobbies, parks, malls, and shops. Office workers can only take them off once they are inside their workplaces.
Another landmark step that took effect today was the ban on gatherings of three or more people. The only exceptions to this are members of the same household who go out together, or share a ride in a car.

The gathering restriction carries a more severe penalty of up to $25,000 when the matter goes to court, and imprisonment of up to six months.

From today, other government facilities that were reopened only recently have been shut down again, including sports centres, tennis courts, golf courses, and similar places.


Ordered closed earlier were beaches, public swimming pools, barbecue pits and camp sites.

Also from today, border crossings have been made tighter, with all sea crew being banned from entering Hong Kong unless they are loading or unloading cargo. In addition:

1)     air and sea crew must present a negative result for a nucleic acid test for Covid-19, taken within 48 hours before departing for Hong Kong;

Tunghayan ang isa na namang Kwentong Dream Love

2)     ship and plane crew members who opt to have their test taken at Hong Kong airport need to wait for the result, and then quarantine for 48 hours if they test negative

3)     crew members must not mingle with the local community, and should be transported from the airport to their hotel on vehicles provided by the airline or shipping companies.

As part of the tighter border control, all those arriving from the United States and Kazakshtan must, prior to boarding, present a negative result for Covid-19, with the test having been carried out no earlier than 72 hours before the flight.

In addition, they must present a confirmed booking in a hotel in Hong Kong for at least 14 days for their mandatory quarantine.

The same restrictions were imposed starting on Jul 25 on travelers from the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and South Africa.

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