COVID19: Dancing at nightclubs returns under testing regime

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Dancing returns to nightclubs and restaurants, but under tight COVID-19 testing rules, as those visiting a hospitality venue with a capacity of more than 150 people need a 15-hour negative rapid test, regardless of vaccination history.

Following pleas from nightclub owners and carnival-goers, health authorities approved a new COVID protocol from Thursday to allow venues and restaurants with dance floors to return to some normality.

According to the latest protocol, anyone over the age of 12 visiting a hospitality venue with a capacity of more than 150 people (225 square metres) will have to carry out a 15-hour negative test.

Children aged six to 11 must carry a negative test not older than a week to gain entry, regardless of their vaccination history or if they have a recovery certificate.

The Health Ministry said the venue owners must sign a statement that their premises can accommodate over 150 people and will provide music and dance entertainment.

For all other hospitality venues without dancing, regardless of their capacity, entry will be allowed as follows:

  • Unvaccinated people on the provision they carry a 24-hour negative test.
  • Anyone over the age of six will be allowed provided they carry a valid vaccination certificate or a recovery certificate.

Certificates of people who have had a booster shot or are fully vaccinated with their last shot administrated no more than seven months earlier are valid.

On the other hand, recovery certificates are only valid for three months following the date on which they were released from quarantine.