Holiday planning guidelines: COVID-19

Holiday travel

Follow these measures:

  • Stay up to date with developments related to COVID-19 locally and the place you plan to visit.
  • Assess the risk. Who are you visiting? Are they of a higher risk group, immune compromised, or do they suffer from respiratory illness?
  • Plan accordingly with the household you’re visiting, especially if you have to self-isolate.
    • Do they have safety measures they want you to uphold while you’re visiting? Do you have any that you’d like them to follow?
    • Have conversations early to avoid situations where 1 person is doing something that makes others feel unsafe.
  • Limit your contacts for 2 weeks before travelling.
  • If you feel ill, stay home and delay your trip, even if your symptoms are mild.
  • Sanitize your hands before taking transportation with people outside of your household.
  • Wear a mask where it’s required and follow all guidelines that’re in place at the location you’re visiting.
  • Determine whether your trip can be rescheduled for the spring or summer months.
Holiday self-isolation

Every person arriving in Yukon needs to self-isolate for 14 days.

Watch for any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, no matter how mild.

Stay in your place of self-isolation, whether it’s your home or someone else’s.

Do not go to any place where you could infect others, such as:

  • a social gathering;
  • work;
  • a school;
  • a daycare;
  • a health care facility, unless it’s an emergency;
  • a grocery store; or
  • any other public gathering or place.

Going outside

  • You may go outdoors for fresh air when you're by yourself or with others you're in self-isolation with.
  • Do not meet up with anyone or have face-to-face contact (even if it’s within 2 metres or 6 feet) outside of your self-isolation bubble while outdoors.

Do not have visitors

Do not have visitors in your home. Your friends, family or delivery drivers can drop off food or other things you may need outside your door.

Do not have any contact with older adults and other people who have chronic medical conditions, such as:

  • immune deficiencies;
  • lung problems;
  • heart disease; or
  • diabetes.

If you share a household space

If you share a household with people who have not travelled outside Yukon, you have 2 self-isolation options. You must commit to self-isolation option 1 or option 2 and diligently follow the rules for your chosen option.

Self-isolation option 1: self-isolate together

Choose option 1 if:

  • the other members of your household are committed to self-isolate with you; and
  • you're hosting people from outside of Yukon.

Every member of your household, including guests, must follow the self-isolation rules:

  • stay home;
  • only go outside alone or with people you're self-isolating with; and
  • do not have visitors.

You may share meals, household items and hugs with people who you're self-isolating with.

If your guest leaves before 14 days:

After your guest leaves, everyone in your household will need to:

  • self-isolate for 3 days following your guest's departure; and
  • self-monitor for symptoms.

Check-in with your guest after they've left to find out if they're experiencing symptoms. If after 3 days everyone in your household and your departed guest do not have symptoms, your household can leave self-isolation.

What is the 3-day isolation period?

When your visitor starts to have symptoms, they may have been ill for up to 3 days before their symptoms appear.

Your visitor may have exposed someone else during this 3-day period and they could be infected. This is an example of asymptomatic transmission.
 

For example:

If your visitor shows symptoms 2 days after they leave, you could’ve become infected on the 1st day of their infectious period. In this case of asymptomatic transmission, you’ll need to self-isolate for 14 days after your exposure. This self-isolation would start the day before your visitor left.

When you can leave self-isolation

  • If your visitor does not have symptoms for a full 3 days after they leave.
  • If your visitor leaves and starts to show symptoms 4 days after they leave, their infectious period started after they left. You were not exposed to them during their infectious period.

We understand that this information can be confusing. If you have questions, phone 1-877-374-0425 or email COVID19info@gov.yk.ca.

Self-isolation option 2: self-isolate within a home where others are not self-isolating

Choose option 2 if the other members of your household want to continue going to:

  • work;
  • school;
  • health care facilities;
  • grocery stores; or
  • other public places.

What you have to do

  • You must stay 2 metres (6 feet) away from other household members who are not self-isolating.
  • Use a separate bathroom if possible. If this is not possible, bathrooms must be cleaned daily.
  • Do not share household items.
  • Do not share the following with people in your home:
    • drinking glasses;
    • cups;
    • eating utensils;
    • pillows; or
    • other items.
  • Do not eat meals with other people in your household.
  • Clean household items after using them. After using household items, you must clean them.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Cough or sneeze into your sleeve or elbow.
  • Wash your hands after coughing or sneezing.
  • Immediately throw used tissues into the garbage and wash your hands.
  • Put all waste into regular garbage bins.
  • Line the garbage with a plastic bag to make waste disposal easier and safer.
  • Be careful when touching garbage.
  • When you empty the garbage, take care to not touch used tissues with your hands.
  • Clean your hands with soap and water after emptying the garbage.
  • You and other household members should wash your hands frequently.
  • Wash your hands after using the bathroom and before eating.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If water and soap are not available to wash your hands, use an alcohol-based sanitizer.
  • Clean your home with regular household cleaners.
  • Clean on a daily basis regularly touched items, such as:
    • toilets;
    • sink taps;
    • handles;
    • door knobs;
    • light switches;
    • cellphones; and
    • bedside tables.

Supplies for self-isolating

The Public Health Agency of Canada has a list of supplies to get when self-isolating.

Stock your home with the essential supplies you’ll need if you have to self-isolate for 14 days. You do not need to stockpile large quantities of toilet paper or any other supplies in excess of what you need. Stockpiling creates supply issues for everyone.

 

Holiday gatherings

As the holiday season approaches and 2020 comes to a close, celebrations will look a bit different this year. As we gather and connect with family and friends, we need to be mindful how we spend this holiday season.

It’s more important than ever to stay vigilant and follow the Safe 6 plus wear a mask.

If you host during the holidays or plan to attend a gathering, follow these guidelines. 

Holiday office parties

Deciding whether to host an in-person office holiday party will depend on your team size and venue.

Things to consider:

  • Rent a venue large enough to safely host your whole company.
  • Remember that organized seated events in a rented venue are limited to 50 people indoors.
  • Refer to the gathering guidelines for more information.
  • If your team is too large, consider breaking up into smaller groups and virtually connect the groups during the office party.
  • Wear a non-medical mask during the party.

Businesses and organizations can also make the most of remote alternatives. Some ideas include:

  • set up a virtual gift exchange;
  • play virtual charades; and
  • host a virtual talent show.

Holiday gatherings at restaurants and bars

  • You have to wear a non-medical mask except when you’re sitting at a table.
  • Only members of the same social bubble can sit together.
  • There can only be a maximum of 6 people at the same table.
  • Limit private events to no more than 50 people in total.
  • All people must:
    • follow the establishment’s operational plan;
    • practise the Safe 6 plus wear a mask, including physical distancing; and
    • remain seated, except to use the washroom or leave the establishment.

Holiday gatherings in private dwellings

If you’re hosting

  • Where possible consider virtual or contactless gatherings.
  • Make sure there’s enough space for physical distancing between people.
  • If there are people from outside your household, consider asking everyone to wear a non-medical mask.
  • Be clear with your guests ahead of time on boundaries and expectations.
  • Try to limit your contacts in the 2 weeks before hosting and encourage your guests to do the same.
  • Remind your guests to stay home if they are not feeling well.
  • If you’re feeling sick, even if you’re experiencing mild symptoms, reschedule or make alternative arrangements.
  • Do not host more than 10 people indoors.
  • If your guests cannot maintain a 2 metre (6 feet) distance from one another, ask them to wear a non-medical mask.
  • Keep the music low to reduce the need for loud talking and shouting.
  • Avoid singing, chanting and shouting. If you cannot avoid these activities wear a non-medical mask.
  • Move your gathering outdoors (weather permitting).

Food preparation

  • Encourage guests to bring their own food and drink.
  • Do not have a buffet or family-style serving event with people outside of your immediate household.
  • Consider having pre-portioned food if you’re hosting people outside of your household bubble.
  • Provide guests with utensils, plates and napkins for snacks, candy, nuts, finger foods. This way each person can have their own serving.
  • Seat guests as far apart as possible and consider assigning seats based on household.

Cleaning and disinfecting

  • Make sure all high-touch surfaces are clean and disinfected.
    • toilets;
    • sink taps;
    • handles;
    • door knobs;
    • light switches; and
    • tables.
  • Offer hand sanitizer, and have hand soap and running warm water available.
Attending a gathering

Follow these steps to safely attend a holiday celebration.

  • Bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils.
  • Maintain proper physical distancing (2 metres or 6 feet) with people outside of your household.
  • Avoid going in and out of areas where food is being prepared, such as the kitchen.

When to stay home

  • You’ve been diagnosed with COVID-19, or are waiting the results of a test for COVID-19.
  • You’ve been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • You’re in quarantine or self-isolation.

  • You feel sick or have any symptoms of COVID-19, even mild symptoms.
  • You’ve returned from travel outside of Yukon.

Think about your risk

Check your personal risk level. Consider whether the activities you’re planning to take part in are safe:

  • Are they outside?
  • Are they inside?; and
  • How large is the gathering?

Respect others by following the Safe 6 plus wear a mask.

Low-risk activities

  • Indoor celebrations with your immediate household.
  • Virtual holiday celebrations.
  • Drop-off or physically distanced doorstep gift exchanges.

Outdoor celebrations in open spaces where people can maintain at least a 2 metre (6 feet) distance between each other

High-risk activities

  • Being in closed spaces with poor ventilation.
  • Being in crowded places where more than 10 people are gathered.
  • Talking to others within close range.
  • Singing, shouting (for example, when carolling).

Before and after gathering

  • Consider limiting non-essential travel before and after gathering with others.
  • Reduce your activities 14 days before attending planned gathering or celebrations to reduce:
    • your risk of exposure to COVID-19: and
    • the risk of exposing others to COVID-19.

If you show any symptoms

  • Isolate yourself immediately from others.
  • If you’re in a shared household refer to self-isolation guidelines.
  • Phone the COVID Testing and Assessment Centre to arrange for testing: 867-393-3083.
Alternative holiday gathering ideas

Hold a virtual gift exchange such as a white elephant using a videoconferencing app:

  • set a budget;
  • pick a date to gather together on a video call;
  • have people buy and wrap a present;
  • choose a picking order ‒ you can use a number-generator to determine the sequence.
  • Gifters hold up the presents, or you can make a presentation to display the options through “share my screen”.
  • Each person picks a present and unwraps it on camera.
  • The next player takes a turn by either stealing the present or unwrapping a new present.
  • The game continues until all the gifts have been unwrapped.
  • Once the game finishes, gifters send or deliver the presents to the rightful owners.

Send a holiday gift box:

  • Pick a theme (local businesses, tasty treats, whatever you choose).
  • Set a budget and pick a time to gather with your group on a video call. Pick a name through a random name generator.
  • Create a box that fits the theme.
  • Mail the box to the rightful owner, or drop it on their doorstep before hand the video call.
  • Each person opens their gift box during the group video chat.
  • Hold a virtual ugly sweater party:
    • Set a time to hold a video call.
    • Create or buy an ugly holiday sweater.
    • Showcase your sweater with everyone on the call.
    • Take a poll of who had the best sweater.
    • Whoever is voted with the best sweater wins a prize.
Mental health during the holidays

You may feel stressed during the holidays. This is normal and COVID-19 may make you feel more stressed. While it’s normal to feel a range of emotions during this time, you may experience:

  • sadness about breaking important family traditions and being away from loved ones;
  • fear and anxiety about getting sick with COVID-19 or infecting others; and
  • concern about gift giving and finances.

It’s important to take care of your mental health during this holiday season. If you’re feeling overwhelmed try to talk about your emotions. Reach out to a supportive friend or family member.

If you live alone, consider spending the holidays with another household.

Connect with your loved ones during the holidays via:

  • email;
  • text message;
  • phone calls; and
  • video chat.

Find out about the mental health supports that’re available in Yukon and across the country.

Every person arriving in Yukon needs to self-isolate for 14 days.

Watch for any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, no matter how mild.

Stay in your place of self-isolation, whether it’s your home or someone else’s.

Do not go to any place where you could infect others, such as:

  • a social gathering;
  • work;
  • a school;
  • a daycare;
  • a health care facility, unless it’s an emergency;
  • a grocery store; or
  • any other public gathering or place.

Going outside

  • You may go outdoors for fresh air when you're by yourself or with others you're in self-isolation with.
  • Do not meet up with anyone or have face-to-face contact (even if it’s within 2 metres or 6 feet) outside of your self-isolation bubble while outdoors.

Do not have visitors

Do not have visitors in your home. Your friends, family or delivery drivers can drop off food or other things you may need outside your door.

Do not have any contact with older adults and other people who have chronic medical conditions, such as:

  • immune deficiencies;
  • lung problems;
  • heart disease; or
  • diabetes.

If you share a household space

If you share a household with people who have not travelled outside Yukon, you have 2 self-isolation options. You must commit to self-isolation option 1 or option 2 and diligently follow the rules for your chosen option.

Self-isolation option 1: self-isolate together

Choose option 1 if:

  • the other members of your household are committed to self-isolate with you; and
  • you're hosting people from outside of Yukon.

Every member of your household, including guests, must follow the self-isolation rules:

  • stay home;
  • only go outside alone or with people you're self-isolating with; and
  • do not have visitors.

You may share meals, household items and hugs with people who you're self-isolating with.

If your guest leaves before 14 days:

After your guest leaves, everyone in your household will need to:

  • self-isolate for 3 days following your guest's departure; and
  • self-monitor for symptoms.

Check-in with your guest after they've left to find out if they're experiencing symptoms. If after 3 days everyone in your household and your departed guest do not have symptoms, your household can leave self-isolation.

What is the 3-day isolation period?

When your visitor starts to have symptoms, they may have been ill for up to 3 days before their symptoms appear.

Your visitor may have exposed someone else during this 3-day period and they could be infected. This is an example of asymptomatic transmission.
 

For example:

If your visitor shows symptoms 2 days after they leave, you could’ve become infected on the 1st day of their infectious period. In this case of asymptomatic transmission, you’ll need to self-isolate for 14 days after your exposure. This self-isolation would start the day before your visitor left.

When you can leave self-isolation

  • If your visitor does not have symptoms for a full 3 days after they leave.
  • If your visitor leaves and starts to show symptoms 4 days after they leave, their infectious period started after they left. You were not exposed to them during their infectious period.

We understand that this information can be confusing. If you have questions, phone 1-877-374-0425 or email COVID19info@gov.yk.ca.

Self-isolation option 2: self-isolate within a home where others are not self-isolating

Choose option 2 if the other members of your household want to continue going to:

  • work;
  • school;
  • health care facilities;
  • grocery stores; or
  • other public places.

What you have to do

  • You must stay 2 metres (6 feet) away from other household members who are not self-isolating.
  • Use a separate bathroom if possible. If this is not possible, bathrooms must be cleaned daily.
  • Do not share household items.
  • Do not share the following with people in your home:
    • drinking glasses;
    • cups;
    • eating utensils;
    • pillows; or
    • other items.
  • Do not eat meals with other people in your household.
  • Clean household items after using them. After using household items, you must clean them.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Cough or sneeze into your sleeve or elbow.
  • Wash your hands after coughing or sneezing.
  • Immediately throw used tissues into the garbage and wash your hands.
  • Put all waste into regular garbage bins.
  • Line the garbage with a plastic bag to make waste disposal easier and safer.
  • Be careful when touching garbage.
  • When you empty the garbage, take care to not touch used tissues with your hands.
  • Clean your hands with soap and water after emptying the garbage.
  • You and other household members should wash your hands frequently.
  • Wash your hands after using the bathroom and before eating.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If water and soap are not available to wash your hands, use an alcohol-based sanitizer.
  • Clean your home with regular household cleaners.
  • Clean on a daily basis regularly touched items, such as:
    • toilets;
    • sink taps;
    • handles;
    • door knobs;
    • light switches;
    • cellphones; and
    • bedside tables.

Supplies for self-isolating

The Public Health Agency of Canada has a list of supplies to get when self-isolating.

Stock your home with the essential supplies you’ll need if you have to self-isolate for 14 days. You do not need to stockpile large quantities of toilet paper or any other supplies in excess of what you need. Stockpiling creates supply issues for everyone.

 

As the holiday season approaches and 2020 comes to a close, celebrations will look a bit different this year. As we gather and connect with family and friends, we need to be mindful how we spend this holiday season.

It’s more important than ever to stay vigilant and follow the Safe 6 plus wear a mask.

If you host during the holidays or plan to attend a gathering, follow these guidelines. 

Holiday office parties

Deciding whether to host an in-person office holiday party will depend on your team size and venue.

Things to consider:

  • Rent a venue large enough to safely host your whole company.
  • Remember that organized seated events in a rented venue are limited to 50 people indoors.
  • Refer to the gathering guidelines for more information.
  • If your team is too large, consider breaking up into smaller groups and virtually connect the groups during the office party.
  • Wear a non-medical mask during the party.

Businesses and organizations can also make the most of remote alternatives. Some ideas include:

  • set up a virtual gift exchange;
  • play virtual charades; and
  • host a virtual talent show.

Holiday gatherings at restaurants and bars

  • You have to wear a non-medical mask except when you’re sitting at a table.
  • Only members of the same social bubble can sit together.
  • There can only be a maximum of 6 people at the same table.
  • Limit private events to no more than 50 people in total.
  • All people must:
    • follow the establishment’s operational plan;
    • practise the Safe 6 plus wear a mask, including physical distancing; and
    • remain seated, except to use the washroom or leave the establishment.

Holiday gatherings in private dwellings

If you’re hosting

  • Where possible consider virtual or contactless gatherings.
  • Make sure there’s enough space for physical distancing between people.
  • If there are people from outside your household, consider asking everyone to wear a non-medical mask.
  • Be clear with your guests ahead of time on boundaries and expectations.
  • Try to limit your contacts in the 2 weeks before hosting and encourage your guests to do the same.
  • Remind your guests to stay home if they are not feeling well.
  • If you’re feeling sick, even if you’re experiencing mild symptoms, reschedule or make alternative arrangements.
  • Do not host more than 10 people indoors.
  • If your guests cannot maintain a 2 metre (6 feet) distance from one another, ask them to wear a non-medical mask.
  • Keep the music low to reduce the need for loud talking and shouting.
  • Avoid singing, chanting and shouting. If you cannot avoid these activities wear a non-medical mask.
  • Move your gathering outdoors (weather permitting).

Food preparation

  • Encourage guests to bring their own food and drink.
  • Do not have a buffet or family-style serving event with people outside of your immediate household.
  • Consider having pre-portioned food if you’re hosting people outside of your household bubble.
  • Provide guests with utensils, plates and napkins for snacks, candy, nuts, finger foods. This way each person can have their own serving.
  • Seat guests as far apart as possible and consider assigning seats based on household.

Cleaning and disinfecting

  • Make sure all high-touch surfaces are clean and disinfected.
    • toilets;
    • sink taps;
    • handles;
    • door knobs;
    • light switches; and
    • tables.
  • Offer hand sanitizer, and have hand soap and running warm water available.

Follow these steps to safely attend a holiday celebration.

  • Bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils.
  • Maintain proper physical distancing (2 metres or 6 feet) with people outside of your household.
  • Avoid going in and out of areas where food is being prepared, such as the kitchen.

When to stay home

  • You’ve been diagnosed with COVID-19, or are waiting the results of a test for COVID-19.
  • You’ve been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • You’re in quarantine or self-isolation.

  • You feel sick or have any symptoms of COVID-19, even mild symptoms.
  • You’ve returned from travel outside of Yukon.

Think about your risk

Check your personal risk level. Consider whether the activities you’re planning to take part in are safe:

  • Are they outside?
  • Are they inside?; and
  • How large is the gathering?

Respect others by following the Safe 6 plus wear a mask.

Low-risk activities

  • Indoor celebrations with your immediate household.
  • Virtual holiday celebrations.
  • Drop-off or physically distanced doorstep gift exchanges.

Outdoor celebrations in open spaces where people can maintain at least a 2 metre (6 feet) distance between each other

High-risk activities

  • Being in closed spaces with poor ventilation.
  • Being in crowded places where more than 10 people are gathered.
  • Talking to others within close range.
  • Singing, shouting (for example, when carolling).

Before and after gathering

  • Consider limiting non-essential travel before and after gathering with others.
  • Reduce your activities 14 days before attending planned gathering or celebrations to reduce:
    • your risk of exposure to COVID-19: and
    • the risk of exposing others to COVID-19.

If you show any symptoms

  • Isolate yourself immediately from others.
  • If you’re in a shared household refer to self-isolation guidelines.
  • Phone the COVID Testing and Assessment Centre to arrange for testing: 867-393-3083.

Hold a virtual gift exchange such as a white elephant using a videoconferencing app:

  • set a budget;
  • pick a date to gather together on a video call;
  • have people buy and wrap a present;
  • choose a picking order ‒ you can use a number-generator to determine the sequence.
  • Gifters hold up the presents, or you can make a presentation to display the options through “share my screen”.
  • Each person picks a present and unwraps it on camera.
  • The next player takes a turn by either stealing the present or unwrapping a new present.
  • The game continues until all the gifts have been unwrapped.
  • Once the game finishes, gifters send or deliver the presents to the rightful owners.

Send a holiday gift box:

  • Pick a theme (local businesses, tasty treats, whatever you choose).
  • Set a budget and pick a time to gather with your group on a video call. Pick a name through a random name generator.
  • Create a box that fits the theme.
  • Mail the box to the rightful owner, or drop it on their doorstep before hand the video call.
  • Each person opens their gift box during the group video chat.
  • Hold a virtual ugly sweater party:
    • Set a time to hold a video call.
    • Create or buy an ugly holiday sweater.
    • Showcase your sweater with everyone on the call.
    • Take a poll of who had the best sweater.
    • Whoever is voted with the best sweater wins a prize.

You may feel stressed during the holidays. This is normal and COVID-19 may make you feel more stressed. While it’s normal to feel a range of emotions during this time, you may experience:

  • sadness about breaking important family traditions and being away from loved ones;
  • fear and anxiety about getting sick with COVID-19 or infecting others; and
  • concern about gift giving and finances.

It’s important to take care of your mental health during this holiday season. If you’re feeling overwhelmed try to talk about your emotions. Reach out to a supportive friend or family member.

If you live alone, consider spending the holidays with another household.

Connect with your loved ones during the holidays via:

  • email;
  • text message;
  • phone calls; and
  • video chat.

Find out about the mental health supports that’re available in Yukon and across the country.