Level 3 blow for SMEs nationwide

Alan Hickey

October 06 2020

After an unsettling start to the week that saw NPHET recommend a second full lockdown for the whole country, the Government has decided to impose Level 3 restrictions nationwide from midnight, October 6th.

Below, we look at what impact this will have on businesses all over the country.

Restaurants and cafes

Under Level 3, restaurants and cafes (which includes bars/pubs serving food and wet pubs) may remain open for take-away, delivery, and outdoor dining/service to an absolute maximum of 15 people.

Wet pubs in Dublin will remain closed.

Hotels remain open but hotel services are only available to residents.

These restrictions on services could force many hospitality businesses to lay off staff or evaluate their financial viability in other ways.


While the retail sector can continue to operate provided protective measures and face covering mandates are in place, the move to Level 3 is likely to reduce footfall further.

Tourist attractions

Galleries, museums, and cultural attractions will be closed while libraries will be open for certain services, such as call and collect.


Schools and creches can remain open once protective measures are in place.

Public transport

Face coverings will have to be worn on public transport, with capacities also limited to 50%. Public transport should be used for essential workers and essential purposes only.


You are now only allowed visitors from one other household and at a limit of six people. While outdoor gatherings of up to 15 people can go ahead, indoor gatherings, such as training events, are not permitted. 

Working from home

The Government has advised that people must work from home unless it's absolutely necessary for them to attend in person.

How to handle increased restrictions

For small businesses that have managed to reopen in recent weeks, the move to Level 3 is a hard pill to swallow.

We know that thousands of employers will need support to handle questions from staff about their entitlements and accessing Government financial supports.

That’s why Peninsula clients get unlimited 24/7 HR advice to help you overcome every workplace challenge.

But even if you’re not a client, you can still contact Peninsula for advice on protecting your business through the tough months ahead.

Need our help?

Claim your free advice call on Level 3 restrictions or any HR and health & safety issue by calling one of our experts any time day or night on 0818 923 923.

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