Practice These Tips For A Safe Holiday Season

Posted on November 24, 2020

Here’s what you can do.

Traditional holiday gatherings with family and friends are fun but can increase the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19 or the flu. Follow these tips to make your holiday safer. The safest way to celebrate  this year is to celebrate with people in your household. 

  • Wear a mask.
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others who do not live with you (about 2 arm lengths)
  • Wash your hands. Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Keep hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol) with you and use it when you are unable to wash your hands.

Attending a Gathering:

Take these additional steps while attending a gathering.

  • Bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups, and utensils.
  • Wear a mask, and safely store your mask while eating and drinking.
  • Avoid going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared or handled, such as in the kitchen.
  • Use single-use options, like salad dressing and condiment packets, and disposable items like food containers, plates, and utensils.

Hosting a Gathering:

If having guests to your home, be sure that people follow the steps that everyone can take to be safe. Other steps you can take:

  • Have a small outdoor meal with family and friends who live in your community.
  • Limit the number of guests.
  • Have conversations with guests ahead of time to set expectations for celebrating together.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and items between use.
  • If celebrating indoors, make sure to open windows.
  • Limit the number of people in food preparation areas.
  • Have guests bring their own food and drinks.
  • If sharing food, have one person serve food and use single-use options, like plastic utensils.

Safe Holiday Gathering w Mask

If you do travel:

  • Check travel restrictions before you go.
  • Get your flu shot before you travel.
  • Always wear a mask in public settings and on public transportation.
  • Stay at least 6 feet apart from anyone who doesn’t live in your household.
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your mask, eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Bring extra supplies, such as masks and hand sanitizer.

Shopping:

  • Shop online sales  on the days leading up to the winter holidays.
  • Use contactless services for purchased items, like curbside pick-up.
  • Shop in open air markets staying 6 feet away from others.

Other Activities:

  • Safely prepare traditional dishes and deliver them to family and neighbors in a way that does not involve contact with others (for example, leave them on the porch).
  • Participate in a gratitude activity, like writing down things you are grateful for and sharing with your friends and family.
  • Schedule a time to share a meal together virtually. Have people share recipes or show dishes they prepared.

The following people should not attend in-person holiday gatherings:

Do not host or participate in any in-person gatherings if you or anyone in your household:

  • Has been diagnosed with COVID-19 and has not met the criteria for when it is safe to be around others
  • Has symptoms of COVID-19
  • Is waiting for COVID-19 viral test results
  • May have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 in the last 14 days
  • Is at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19

Read more about tips for coping with holidays here.