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How to gather safely this holiday season

  • Consider the wishes of those you are planning to gather with, for example ask Elders and other vulnerable individuals whether they are comfortable with your plan. This may mean making your gatherings smaller, shortening the amount of time you spend together, or celebrating virtually. 
  • Remind guests that if they do not feel well, they should stay home. You can offer to deliver them a plate of food. 

  • Wash hands (for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water) or sanitize them frequently, especially upon entering the house, before and after eating, and after coughing or sneezing, before and after preparing food. 

  • Do not forget basic precautions, such as coughing and sneezing into your elbow or a tissue and washing your hands immediately after. 

  • Members of different households should try to stay 2 metres (6 feet) apart. If this is not possible, everyone should wear masks.  

  • To ensure physical distancing at mealtimes, try to keep households at their own tables to maintain family/household bubbles.  


Illustration of 2 dancing snowmen who are 6 feet apart from one another


  • Try to ensure good ventilation in the gathering space. Open a window or door a little from time to time to improve air circulation.  

  • Encourage guests to avoid singing or shouting. Keep music volume low so that guests do not have to shout to talk. This helps to prevent the spread of the virus.  

  • Keep a record of who was at your gathering. This will help with contact tracing in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak.  

  • If you will travel outside of your community for the feast, see the guidelines on travel.



Holiday feast
  • Limit the number of people in food preparation areas. 

  • If you are serving food at a feast, be sure to wear gloves and a mask that properly covers your nose and mouth. 

  • Have hand sanitizer at the beginning of the food line and on the tables. 

  • When possible, opt for plate-style serving instead of buffets. 

  • Bring extra masks, or have extra masks on hand if you are the host. 

  • Have a plan to store your mask while eating and drinking (in a sealed bag, not on the table).  

It’s okay to protect one another

2 elders sitting, wearing masks

"I still wear a mask to protect you. You still wear a mask to protect me."

Washing hands with soap and water

Wash your hands with warm water and soap often. 

Woman with headache holding her head

Stay home if you do not feel well.

Youth taking selfie while getting vaccinated

Vaccination against COVID-19 is still our best layer of protection.  

Please check your community recommendations and follow local guidelines. Gatherings should respect the limits (number of people) described by the current alert level in your community. 

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