Since the heightened measures kicked in on May 16, dining in at food and beverage outlets and hawker centres has been disallowed.
However, the Ministry of Education (MOE) has clarified that dining in canteens and dining halls at Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) can continue, as long as the necessary safe management measures are in place.
According to MOE's press release, this flexibility is because students and staff are on campuses for longer periods of time.
These safe management measures implemented and which canteens and dining halls are open differ depending on individual universities.
Dining in at canteens
The Straits Times spoke to students from several local universities to find out what the specific measures are.
- For the National University of Singapore (NUS), dining in is allowed at its hostel's dining halls, but not canteens, the latter of which remains closed. Diners must sit individually when having their meals.
- For the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), dining in is allowed at canteens and food courts but not the fast food outlets and restaurants on campus. Diners must adhere to the maximum of two people per group size.
- For the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM), dining in is allowed at its food court, FoodFest.
An NTU student told ST that the dine-in policy is necessary due to the large size of the campus.
As accommodation are located quite far away from where classes take place in NTU, being able to dine in at canteens would help to minimise the amount of time required to travel back and forth should students only be allowed to eat in their rooms.
Ok to eat at some public spaces
Aside from universities, it is permissible to eat at other public spaces.
According to the Ministry of Health's website, the consumption of food and drinks at other public places, including parks, is not prohibited.
This should only be the case when it would be inconvenient to return home or workplace to eat.
And in these instances, members of the public should avoid crowded spaces and minimise social interactions, including maintaining safe distancing at all times.
Occupancy limits at public places, such as shopping malls and showrooms, have also been reduced from the limit of 10sqm per person of Gross Floor Area (GFA), to 16sqm per person, after Singapore entered Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) from May 16.
Space Out, a website by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) in collaboration with retail mall operators, allows users to check crowd levels before heading down to malls and other public places, such as supermarkets, post offices, and markets.
Apart from mall data, the website also allows for users to see the crowd levels for supermarkets, post offices and markets as well.
Top photo from Yerbolat K / Google Maps (for illustrative purposes)