As the rolling average of COVID-19 cases in Melbourne continues to fall, premier Dan Andrews has kept to his word and announced an easing of restrictions for residents.

From 11.59 pm tonight, a raft of changes will come in, loosening Melbourne’s very tight restrictions on when residents can leave the home and how far they can travel.

Unfortunately, it’s not all good news right now – Melbourne will still have to wait two more weeks for retail and hospitality to reopen.

Here’s a breakdown of what you will be able to do from 11.59pm tonight, and what you’ll have to wait for a bit longer:

Getting out of the house

In terms of leaving home and shopping, the travel distance will be extended from 5km to 25km. You’ll also have the opportunity to play certain sports, with tennis courts, skate parks and golf courses reopening. This news effectively means that trips to the beach are now back on, while a maximum of 30 swimmers will be allowed at outdoor pools, which is definitely good news as the warmer months roll on. Outdoor photography will once again be allowed.

Seeing mates

There will be no time limit on leaving home for exercise or outdoor socialising, meaning you won’t be in a mad rush to get home when you head out for some fresh air. In further good news, outdoor gatherings will increase to ten people from two households – this means you might be able to catch up with those mates that you haven’t seen for a while, as restrictions ease.

Getting that haircut

Hairdressers are set to reopen from tonight, in line with the easing of restrictions, so you’ll finally be able to get that quarantine mane attended to and whipped back into some sort of shape. You can also get your dog looking pretty, with mobile or home business pet grooming allowed to resume. Allied health services will also make a full return.

Finally starting that home reno job

In terms of real estate, auctions can now proceed with a maximum of ten people, while residents will also be allowed to kick off with non-essential outdoor home maintenance, repairs and renovations. House painting is also allowed, with a maximum of five workers. Solo or automated car washing and pool cleaning will also make a return.

Things you’ll have to wait for: 

Unfortunately, certain restrictions will not be easing until 11.59pm on November 1, but in two weeks’ time, the four reasons for leaving home will be gone, and a lot more will be back on the proverbial (and actual) table for Melbourne residents. This includes things like:

Getting back on the beers

From 11.59pm on November 1, hospitality will reopen, for a maximum of 20 people inside venues and 50 outside. This is amazing news both for those in the struggling hospitality industry, and those who’ve been dying to get back out and start supporting local eateries again.

Doing some retail therapy

In another big announcement, retail is set to open in two weeks, which will surely be a tremendous relief for businesses that have been operating on a click and collect basis during lockdown. Beauty and personal services will also return.

Visiting mates at home

In line with the easing of restrictions, from 11.59pm on November 1, two people plus dependents, meaning kids, will be able to visit homes once a day.

Other stuff we used to take for granted

Contact sports will recommence from this date, and a maximum of 10 people will be allowed at weddings, with 20 mourners allowed at funerals. Outdoor seated entertainment can host 50, or 25 per cent of the venue’s fixed seat capacity.

Image: Getty Images / Chris Putnam