Updated lockdown rules for online purchases and deliveries in South Africa

Communications and digital technologies minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has published additional rules for couriers and deliveries under South Africa’s adjusted level 4 lockdown.

In a government gazette on Wednesday (7 July), Ndabeni-Abrahams said that this should be read alongside the existing regulations which were published for e-commerce in May 2020.

The additional rules include:

  • Couriers must be thermal scanned daily and must sanitise throughout the day;
  • All equipment and materials used must be sanitised more than once daily;
  • Courier drivers must be equipped with face masks;
  • Sanitisation processes must be in place upon actual delivery of parcels and other items to consumers;
  • Vehicles must be sanitised daily before the commencement of a shift;
  • All directions in respect of health protocols and social distancing to prevent the exposure of persons to Covid-19 must be adhered to from packaging and distribution to deliver,

The current regulations state that courier and delivery personnel must maintain at least one and a half metres distance from other drivers and customers when making deliveries.

Courier and delivery service personnel are also prohibited from entering the home of a customer if such customer and any other residents within the immediate vicinity are not wearing a cloth face mask or a homemade item that covers the nose and mouth.

Rules for retailers 

Retailers are currently permitted to sell all goods online, with the exception of alcohol and other prohibited goods.

However, the regulations state that they should give prominence to those goods which are manufactured in South Africa to ‘limit the social and economic hardship caused by the pandemic on
local industries and enable consumer choice to support local producers’.

Additional requirements include:

  • Retailers must provide for as many payment options as possible for consumers, that are based on reducing risks of transmission, and enabling poorer consumers to access delivery services.
  • When packaging goods, retailers must provide written guidelines for customers on how to safely disinfect their goods before use.
  • Retailers must put in place collection protocols to ensure that adequate social distancing is maintained by courier or delivery service personnel when collecting goods from a warehouse or depot.
  • All goods must be sanitised, in line with the guidelines published by the National Department of Health, before leaving the warehouse or depot.


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Updated lockdown rules for online purchases and deliveries in South Africa