Victoria has moved to the last step on the roadmap to reopening, which means Christmas gatherings are back on, and masks can come off in public, amidst other changes set to kick in from 11:59pm tonight.

Premier Daniel Andrews addressed the media this morning, on the 23rd straight day of no new recorded cases of COVID-19 for Victoria, to announce the various restrictions that will be eased.

Among the most significant changes, hospitality venues will be allowed a maximum of 300 patrons, with 100 inside, with separate density limits applying for larger and smaller venues.

Face masks will no longer be required outside, as long as physical distancing can be maintained, however, the requirement to wear them inside and on public transport still remains.

As Andrews explained it:

“You’ll still need to keep your mask on if you’re at a busy outdoor market – or in line for a snag at your local Bunnings. If you’re headed for a quiet stroll around the neighbourhood, you won’t need to wear a mask – but you will need to carry one, in case the situation changes.”

Cinemas, galleries and museums will be able to host up to 150 people indoors, and the state will begin a phased approach to bringing workers back to the office.

From midnight tonight, 15 visitors will be allowed in homes over the course of a day. From 11:5pm on December 13, this number will increase to 30, in time for Christmas and Hannukkah and other end-of-year celebrations.

“Three months ago, Victoria had 4293 active cases,” Andrews said. “Today we have one. It’s an incredible achievement, and the clearest evidence there is of our determination to not only get on top of this virus, but to squash it.”

You can see Andrews’ remarks in full here.

Image: Getty Images / Asanka Ratnayake