Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC) has announced that it is to reopen its off-course betting shops on non-racedays from 29 August, after a period of closure resulting from the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
Branches originally shut in February, around the beginning of the pandemic, and reopened between 22 June and 19 July, when customers were able to place bets, manage their accounts and make deposits and withdrawals.
However, the shops shut again in July following a resurgence of Covid-19 in Hong Kong, and while they had been due to reopen in early August, ongoing concerns about the virus rate in the region led to their prolonged closure.
The shops will be able to reopen from 29 August, but with certain restrictions and limitations in place. Customers cannot bet on racing or football, but will be able to manage their accounts, cash in any winning tickets or vouchers, make deposits or withdrawals, transfer funds and set up an e-wallet.
Customers must also wear masks and have their temperature taken before being permitted to enter the shop, while social distancing must be adhered to when inside. HKJC will also ensure enhanced cleaning and disinfecting will continue.
HKJC also announced an end date for the validity on any existing winning tickets. In February, HKJC extended the validities of unclaimed tickets and cash vouchers until further notice, upon the closure of its shops.
As the shops will begin to reopen from this weekend, HKJC said the validities of all affected tickets and cash vouchers will be extended to 31 January 2021. The validities of tickets or cash vouchers purchased on or after 29 August will be valid for 60 days and 180 days, respectively.