How many people can I have for seated service?

Updated on 12 November 2020.

To make sure we can all stay safe, limits apply on the number of people who can be in a hospitality venue at the same time.

These limits are based on four square metres of space per person indoors, and two square metres of space per person outdoors, for hospitality businesses.

This means if a space is 8 metres long and 2 metres wide, its total area is 16 square metres (8m x 2m = 16 square metres). Using the ‘four square metre’ rule, no more than 4 patrons would be permitted to be in that indoor space at the same time (16 square metres divided by 4 = 4 people). For smaller venues, the four square metre rule may limit how many people can enter to less than the maximum number allowed. You must apply the smaller limit to the number of patrons.

Temporary walls or structures are allowed to separate larger indoor spaces. Walls separating areas should either reach from floor to ceiling or be at least 2.1 metres high for the space to be considered sufficiently separate. If walls or structures cannot be installed, a 5m distance can be used to separate the spaces.

Each separate indoor space can have a maximum of 10 people. So even if your single dining room space is 120sqm, you can only have a maximum of 10 people for seated service inside unless you have temporary walls or structures or 5m distance between groups of 10 people as above.

If your business has both indoor and outdoor spaces then you need to apply the four square metre rule to the indoors space and the two square metre rule to the outdoor space.

Cafes, pubs, bars and restaurants can serve up to a maximum of 70 people outdoors (your space needs to be at least 140sqm to have this maximum number) and up to 40 people indoors (in at least 4 separate spaces as outlined above.)


Additional restrictions apply, including having a COVIDSafe Plan, contract tracing requirements, distance required between tables and maximum group limits.

Details on this can be found in the Hospitality Industry Restart Guidelines.

Learn more about the Four Square Metre rule .