An East Auckland Indian restaurant and a fast-food outlet in Rotorua have been named as high-risk locations of interest and those who dined there must isolate immediately.
Anyone who visited Gorkha Restaurant in Eastern Beach over the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of Auckland Anniversary Weekend is considered a close contact, along with anyone who ate in at Taco Bell in Fairy Springs on Thursday, February 3, between 7pm and 7.30pm.
Those customers need to self-isolate and get a test immediately and on day five after being at that location of interest, according to advice on the Ministry of Health website this morning.
The growing number of locations of interest comes as modelling for the growing Omicron outbreak is due to be released today.
Parliament is also meeting for the first time this year while preparing for case numbers to peak in March.
The latest modelling from Te Punaha Matatini predicting the extent of New Zealand's Omicron outbreak come as schools around the country are already being impacted by Covid-19 just days into the start of the school year.
While the remaining schools reopen today, Parliament also resumes with only half the total of MPs present due to Covid safety precautions.
Protesters arrive at Parliament
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is not prepared to engage with the anti-mandate convoy making its way to Parliament.
She told RNZ she had a busy day ahead including a caucus meeting and had no intention to greet the convoy when it arrived.
The convoy is descending on the capital later than planned, but when it eventually arrives there are expected to be up to 1000 vehicles congregating outside the steps of Parliament.
People involved are coming from both ends of the country - with a convoy of vehicles travelling from Bluff and another convoy coming from Cape Reinga.
"No, it's not our intention. We have a full day in Parliament today as well with the caucus, public backing session so a busy day ahead of us and that's what we'll be focused on today," said Ardern.
Omicron to peak in March
Ardern told RNZ Omicron was expected to peak in March.
"In terms of timeframe – we're assessing based on other countries and I would say not this month, it looks more like in the 60-day order for most countries, so more likely in March.
"Ultimately the defining feature of where we will be will be booster uptake, the more people that take a booster the lower the likelihood of our peak."
The latest modelling from Rodney Jones, out later this week, suggests New Zealand's daily cases could peak at 10,000.
It also predicts about 500 deaths over a year, Jones told RNZ.
Kiwis getting their booster jab was again crucial.
"That will deliver a much better outcome," he said.
"We can get a bad scenario, and a bad scenario in our model is 16,000 to 20,000 cases and that's if people stop getting boosted and home isolation stops working so effectively.
"If we stop doing what we did in Delta, yeah we can get big numbers, we can't engineer 50,000, that doesn't apply to New Zealand."
Pasifika health expert Dr Collin Tukuitonga also encouraged people to get the vaccination booster and to keep getting tested.
Speaking to TVNZ's Breakfast, he said low testing rates could be why the tens of thousands of Covid cases projected by experts a few weeks ago had not come to fruition.
People were not getting tested because they were not symptomatic or because they did not want to test positive and then have to isolate for days, he said.
Schools around the country becoming infected with Covid
Meanwhile schools in Auckland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Hawke's Bay are among those who have been frantically identifying close contacts after positive cases were confirmed in their schools last week.
Parents at Hamilton West Primary School were warned overnight that there were two new cases of Covid-19 in its school community adding itself to the growing list of schools in the city with confirmed cases.
"Late this evening I have had notification of 2 Covid-19 cases within the school community.
"We are in the process of contacting close contacts to the cases and they will be self-isolating at home from tomorrow and not attending school," a post on the school's Facebook page said.
"If you are not contacted then your child is NOT a close contact so school is open for them tomorrow."
BestStart Clarence Street also had a positive Covid-19 case attending the centre last Tuesday and Wednesday. The centre is closed and children have been told they must self-isolate for 10 days due to being unvaccinated.
Over the long weekend, Melville Intermediate, Rototuna Junior High School, Hamilton Boys' High School and Te Totara Primary also confirmed they had Covid-infected people attending their schools last week.
The schools remain open, but all close contacts have been told to stay away.
All students at Pongakawa School in Te Puke are self-isolating and the school is closed and will return to online learning until next week Monday.
In a letter to parents, principal Craig Haggo said the decision to close the school was made in conjunction with the Medical Officer of Health and regional director of education who felt there were too many variables including the positive case being on a school bus with children across the school.
Four children at Te Mata School in Havelock North are also suspected to have tested positive for the Omicron variant of Covid-19.
A Hawke's Bay DHB spokeswoman said there were a number of close contacts associated with these cases and they were being followed up by public health.
Meanwhile Ramarama School and Reremoana School in Auckland also open this morning for the first time this year after having to delay its start by a week due to staff members testing positive and all teachers being identified as close contacts.
Yesterday there were 188 new community cases across the country and 14 people were fighting the virus in hospital.