Phones will be running hot for hairdressers, pubs and restaurants as fully vaccinated Victorians race for a taste of freedom.
Haircuts as well as a parma and pot will be back on the menu as of Friday after the state government announced it would end lockdown five days earlier than previously planned thanks to hitting its 70 per cent double-dosed vaccination target more quickly than expected .
News of the fast-tracked relaxation came after Victoria recorded 1838 COVID-19 cases and seven deaths on Sunday.
From 11.59pm on Thursday, all restrictions for leaving home will be abolished, alongside the state’s controversial curfew.
Changes will also be made to isolation orders, with fully vaccinated people who are identified as a primary close contact of a confirmed case they don’t live with having to quarantine for seven days rather than 14.
They will need to return negative test results on their first and sixth day of quarantine.
Household and unvaccinated primary close contacts will still be required to isolate for 14 days.
Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley said the “safe and sensible” changes to isolation were “because of Victoria’s outstanding work in getting vaccinated”.
Up to 10 visitors will be allowed in a home per day, but retail and gyms in metropolitan Melbourne will remain closed.
Hairdressing and beauty salons will be able to open for up to five fully vaccinated people at a time.
Pubs, clubs and entertainment venues will be able to open to 20 fully vaccinated customers indoors, and 50 doubled-dosed people outdoors.
“Today is a day where every Victorian should be proud,” Mr Andrews told reporters on Sunday.
“To be only a couple of weeks behind NSW when we know just how much extra vaccine went there is a credit to all Victorians.”
Under the state’s roadmap, the city’s current lockdown – which has run for 74 days – had been due to end on October 26, the predicted date by when 70 per cent of those aged 16 and over would be double-dosed.
Restrictions will ease further when 80 per cent of the eligible population has received both vaccine doses, originally projected to be November 5.
Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said a large proportion of the cases reported on Sunday were from southeast Melbourne, with the City of Casey alone recording 251 of the 1838 new infections.