When considering travel, shared meals, and group gatherings please keep these things in mind to reduce the risk of transmission:
- Limit travel. Staying home is the safest way to keep you, your family, and your community safe.
- Consider hosting a virtual gathering.
- If you plan to host or attend an in-person gathering:
- Set expectations with attendees beforehand (i.e., mask-wearing, distancing practices, greetings, etc). This will help avoid any awkward moments and having to negotiate safety in the moment.
- When greeting people, do so verbally and by waving, rather than hugging, kissing, and handshaking.
- Make sure all attendees wear masks properly (over nose and mouth).
- Have attendees bring their own food and beverages and avoid buffet/potluck style food options.
- Limit the total number of people with whom you have close contact during any given week. This reduces your chance of catching the virus. If you happen to be infected, it reduces the number of people you might potentially expose to the virus.
- Hold gatherings outdoors if weather permits. Transmission is reduced in well-ventilated spaces where people can be more spread out.
Before you travel
- Lay low for 14 days before traveling. This reduces your chance of getting infected right before you leave.
- Get tested according to your usual schedule, if you are part of a testing program.
- Do not travel if you are currently under COVID-related quarantine or isolation.
- For people who are not part of a formal testing program, Massachusetts offers free testing resources for state residents
While in transit
- Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet from other people.
- Wear a mask/face-covering at all times.
- Do not travel if you have a fever or feel sick.
- Wash hands before eating, drinking, or touching your nose or mouth.
Returning to campus after traveling
- Complete the state-mandated travel form before returning to Massachusetts.
- Get tested (or complete the required quarantine) before resuming usual activities.
- Please see the University's post-travel COVID testing and quarantine policy for additional instruction on returning to campus after travel.
Consider these lower-risk ways to celebrate - put together by the CDC:
- Have a small dinner with only the people who live in your household.
- Prepare traditional family recipes for family and neighbors, especially those at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19, and deliver them in a way that doesn’t involve contact with others.
- Have a virtual dinner and share recipes with friends and family.
- Shop online rather than in person on the day after Thanksgiving or the next Monday.
- Watch sports events, parades, and movies from home.
- Find the full CDC article on advice for holiday celebrations
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health also provides additional information about Thanksgiving during COVID-19