As everyone plans for the Thanksgiving holiday, we offer the following considerations to help keep our friends, families, and communities safe during COVID-19. If you host a holiday celebration, keep it small. If you participate in a celebration, follow public health guidance.
Travel may increase your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. Postponing travel and staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others this year.
It’s important to talk with the people you live with and your family and friends about the risks of traveling for Thanksgiving.
If you do travel
- Check travel restrictions before you go.
- Get your flu shot before you travel.
- Always wear a mask in public settings, when using public transportation, and when around people who you don’t live with.
- Stay at least 6 feet apart from anyone who does not live with you.
- 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.
- Know when to delay your travel.
Wash your hands
- Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Keep hand sanitizer with you and use it when you are unable to wash your hands.
Attending a Gathering
- Celebrating virtually or with the people you live with is the safest choice this Thanksgiving.
If you choose to attend a gathering, make your celebration safer. In addition to following the steps that everyone can take to make Thanksgiving safer, take these additional steps if attending a Thanksgiving 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 Thanksgiving Gathering
Celebrating virtually or with the people you live with is the safest choice this Thanksgiving.
If having guests to your home, be sure that people follow the steps that everyone can take to make Thanksgiving safer. These steps include:
- 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, bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors, if possible. You can use a window fan in one of the open windows to blow air out of the window. This will pull fresh air in through the other open windows.
- Limit the number of people in food preparation areas.
- If sharing food, have one person serve food and use single-use options, like plastic utensils.
Consider Other Thanksgiving Activities
- Host a virtual Thanksgiving meal with friends and family who don’t live with you
- Schedule a time to share a meal together virtually.
- Watch television and play games with people in your household
- Watch Thanksgiving Day parades, sports, and movies at home.
- Find a fun game to play.
- Shop online sales the day after Thanksgiving and days leading up to the winter holidays.
- Use contactless services for purchased items, like curbside pick-up.
- 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.
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