We are reaching the end of 2020, and the coronavirus is still attempting to cancel our plans. Is there a way to safely enjoy the holidays, or are we hopeless? The holidays bring various traditions with family gatherings and lots of food. However, not all of us are rich and famous; therefore, we can not afford to continue our annual Christmas party like celebrities, with rapid testing and no worries. But we don't want to get our hopes up on quality time with family and friends, plus 2020 has already taken so much from us, so here are some tips on ‘How to Manage a Socially Distant Holiday Season.’
Judge your situation:
With lots of recommendations floating around in the air, the most important thing to remember when deciding to celebrate the holidays is that everyone's situation is different, so judge for yourself. If you're in a situation where you confidently think you can safely conduct a holiday celebration, proceed to do so cautiously. However, if you know some family members have been exposed, or some friends haven't been following rules, then assess the areas differently to fit your situation.
The safest option to celebrate the holidays is to have virtual parties/dinners. This is the number one option when trying to determine and assess your situation. With the availability of technology, there are many ways to incorporate everyone into the holiday season; however, if you must gather in-person, there are solutions to do so safely.
If you find yourself being a host to a holiday celebration during a pandemic, the most important thing is to remember to keep yourself and your guest safe. You can ensure safety by carefully preparing food and having sanitizer/cleaning items available to guests. Consider having your guest quarantine or get tested for COVID-19 before attending the celebration.
When considered the guest list, try to scale everything back, especially those who be may be at risk. First, you need to scale back the guest list if possible and include immediate family members only. Scale back on the gathering duration, schedule the celebration as a dinner party only, and have guests stay for an hour or two only to limit long exposure. Also, try and scale back on the menu; it will be less work on the host and fewer worries in an already difficult time.
The best option for in-person celebrations during the holiday season is to make them outdoors if you can. If you can open space, try and conduct most of the party there, especially when masks are down while eating. Although most places will be cold during the holiday season, we still see the warmth in many places. Try and set up a fire pit if possible and have outdoor sitting for eating and when masks are down. This will limit the possible exposure of people eating inside.
Lastly, if you are required to travel for a holiday celebration, try and do so safely. This includes masks, gloves, COVID tests, and social distancing. Follow the instructions of the CDC for more guidance on traveling during the coronavirus pandemic. Remember to stay safe during this holiday season.
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