SOME Hunter businesses have begun imposing their own coronavirus restrictions in a bid to stave off a fresh wave of infections within the wider region.
A Newcastle club and a Nelson Bay tourism provider are among those who have restricted their own trade despite state government regulations staying steady.
In Port Stephens, where COVID cases have emerged after a Sydney visitor with links to the Thai Rock restaurant cluster visited in July, it has led one business to suspend its operations altogether.
"With the uncertainty surrounding the current COVID situation, we have made the decision to cancel all cruises for the week ahead," Imagine Cruises said on Saturday.
Chief executive Frank Future told the Newcastle Herald that the business, which began cruises at half-capacity on June 1 after a nine-week shutdown, had made the difficult decision for the greater good.
"We just decided in the end, after 25 years in business, it would be catastrophic if we became the home of a cluster," Mr Future said. "For the sake of just sitting back for a while and taking a breather on it, I think it was the right thing to do."
Mr Future, who is also treasurer for Port Stephens Tourism, said the July holidays had been "gangbusters" for the business but "in the absence of state government leadership I guess we've just got to make our own decisions".
With roughly 60 per cent of his patrons coming from Sydney, Mr Future said it had become too difficult for staff to wade through postcodes to identify who was from hot spots.
"The office was getting calls from people from Sydney, and we're trying to sort through postcodes that have travel bans on them, and it was changing by the day, and then there were locals who didn't want to come with people from Sydney, and people from Sydney who didn't want to come with locals," he said. "It was just getting ridiculous."
Imagine will close for the next week despite pristine conditions, he said, with decisions to be made beyond that as the pandemic rules and broader situation unfolded.
Bar Beach Bowling Club announced restrictions to its patrons on Friday due to "recent developments", limiting its patronage to those within its five-kilometre footprint.
"Due to recent developments we've had to make the call to go back to members only in the club," the Bar Beach venue said in a statement.
"Members are allowed to bring a guest and we're honouring memberships that were current as of 2019 as well. We'd like to thank everyone for being understanding while we continue to do everything we can to keep us all safe."
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