Did you think about the holiday season and felt optimistic that you could have a time-out from the sudden changes in the world? Unfortunately, COVID-19 affects the holiday seasons too.
Holiday gatherings will look a bit different this year, but it doesn’t mean we can’t have a memorable time with our friends and family while staying safe.
Here are some of the necessary things you may need to turn over in your mind.
Considerations for a COVID-19 Holiday Celebration
Holiday celebrations this year won’t be opportunities for people to just “drop by”. When planning for the merriment, hosting, attendance, and travels, you need to consider your local health and safety laws, and very importantly, the people involved in your gathering.
Local Community Laws and Regulations
Your local community’s regulations will determine how you can navigate your celebrations and how many people you have at your gathering. While some cities are strict on regulations and social gatherings, others are only recommendations and leave it to individuals’ discretion.
COVID-19 Confirmed Cases
The rate of COVID-19 in your area, where your guests are coming from, and where you’re heading to (if you aren’t hosting it in your community) will also affect your decisions. Higher infection rates will mean higher chances of getting infected during your gatherings.
Guests Attending the Gathering
The safety of your guests is just as important as yours. You need to consider their age groups, how many people you are planning to host, if they already follow safety measures, and how long they’ll be staying.
Putting all these factors into consideration helps you decide the turn your holiday celebration is going to take. If it’ll be too much of a risk, it’s advisable to have a virtual holiday celebration and try to be creative in how you all interact. However, if it’s permissible in your community, and there’s less risk of infection, you can have a physical gathering, but in a smaller setting.
Safety Precautions to Take at a Physical Holiday Gathering
If you decide to have an in-person holiday celebration, here’s how you can ensure safety:
Before the Gathering
Ensure that you, your family, and guests haven’t been infected with the virus and prescribe a 14-day quarantine before the gathering.
Keep a list of guests and their contact information.
Take provision for supplies like face masks, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, cleaning products, etc.
Deep clean and disinfect your home, especially if hosting inside.
The rigorous planning may not give you enough time to adequately disinfect your home in preparation for your guests, so it's advisable to engage the services of a professional sanitizing and disinfecting agency like SafeFromSpread. They will use extensive sanitization techniques to keep your guests safe from any possibility of infection during the holiday season.
At the gathering
Ensure that guests keep a safe distance of at least 6 feet apart by providing multiple tables and seating areas so people can be distanced. Seat assignment can also help you curtail guest movement.
Keep masks on, especially when you’re around other people.
Encourage frequent washing of hands or use of hand sanitizers.
Frequently clean surfaces as soon as they’re used.
Promote safety around food and drinks.
After the gathering
Ensure that your house or gathering space is properly cleaned.
Keep in touch with guests to know how they’re fairing for at least 14 days, and if anyone has symptoms or tests positive for the virus, inform other guests as soon as possible.
Stay home and avoid physical contact with other people for at least 14 days.
Planning a safe holiday gathering in the new normal requires more effort than usual. Taking the above precaution is a step in the right direction to ensure that you and your loved ones have a safe celebration.