Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed that Scotland will move beyond level 0 on August 9, but what exactly does this mean? 

Since July 19, Scotland has been in the lowest level of Covid restrictions, which include limitations on the number of people allowed to socialise both inside and outside and midnight curfews on hospitality. 

Now these remaining restrictions are set to be abandoned as the country prepares lift measures which in some cases have been in place for well over a year. 

With England having axed all Covid restrictions on July 19, Scotland's approach won't be quite as drastic. 

Here are the rules set to change in Scotland on August 9...

No more social distancing

Legally required social distancing will come to an end on August 9, over a year after it was first imposed. 

It's good news for businesses, who will no longer be limited by the space of their residence as to how many customers can enter at once. 

Also likely to benefit are those getting married, meaning dancing at weddings can resume with guests no longer required to physically distance. 

All venues allowed to legally open

The legal requirement for certain venues to remain closed will be lifted, allowing nightclubs to reopen their doors after almost 18 months. 

Pubs, restaurants and other hospitality will also return to normal licensing hours, in a move that will see the current midnight curfew abandoned. 

Limits on number of people meeting to end

There will be no more limits on the number of people who are allowed to meet, both indoors and outdoors. 

Currently, 15 people from 15 households can meet outdoors, while 8 from 4 households can meet indoors. 

This measure will be axed from August 9, meaning unlimited numbers of people can gather in both private and public settings. 

Self isolation rules change

Self-isolation rules will change for those who are fully vaccinated, with such individuals no longer necessarily required to isolate for 10 days. 

Instead, people identified as close contacts should isolate until they can get a PCR test. 

If the result comes back negative, they will no longer have to self-isolate. 

The results from PCR tests tend to come back within 24-hours, which is likely to drastically cut the amount of time people spend in isolation. 

Rules on school children isolating to change

Similar changes will be applied to young people and school children. 

Those aged 5-17, despite not being vaccinated, will not necessarily have to isolate. 

Instead, they will fall into the same category as double jabbed adults - a negative PCR test will free them from isolation. 

Meanwhile, the school bubble rule, which see's groups of young people forced to isolate if a member of their bubble - often divided by class and year group - test positive, will be scrapped upon the return to school. 

Instead, a more targeted approach will identify those most likely to have contracted the virus. 

What restrictions will remain in place?

Some baseline measures will remain in place across the country in order to curb the spread of the virus. 

Such measures include: 

  • wearing facemasks in all the same settings 
  • continue to advise homeworking where possible
  • indoor hospitality and similar venues required to collect the contact details of customers
  • continued travel restrictions
  • rigorous hygiene, including regular hand washing, will continue to be essential