Hong Kong is now the only city in the world with a compulsory mask-wearing rule for outdoor spaces after neighbouring Macau dropped its mask mandate on February 27. From today, residents of Macau and visitors to the city no longer have to wear masks outdoors, but must still wear them in certain indoor premises such as hospitals, old-age homes, and on public transport other than taxis.

In addition, the Macau government announced that schoolchildren and teachers do not need to wear masks during classes or extra-curricular activities, from February 27.

Hong Kong currently has a compulsory mask-wearing requirement in all outdoor and indoor public spaces, which the government recently extended until March 8. However, people can take off their masks when posing for pictures and while eating or drinking. The legislation that governs the city’s mask rule will expire on March 31 this year.

Several countries in the region have done away with outdoor mask mandates in the past few months. Most recently, Taiwan ended its rule on February 20 and people only have to wear masks in healthcare facilities and on public transport. In Japan, people must currently wear masks in crowded indoors and outdoors areas, when speaking closely with others in public, and at hospitals. Mask-wearing in Japan will be optional from March 13.

Header image credits:SOOATSIMC 223 Tsaueng TTPMRA via WikiCommons

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From the Middle East to the Far East and a couple of places in between, Anjali has lived in no fewer than seven cities in Asia, and has travelled extensively in the region. She worked as a lifestyle journalist in India before coming to Hong Kong, where her favourite thing to do is island-hopping with her daughter. You can check out her musings on motherhood, courtesy her Instagram profile.

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