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COVID-19 Vaccinations are Key to a Safe Thanksgiving

Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Author name: Lee Health

COVID holiday travel graphic

Don’t throw away those masks just yet. A Thanksgiving celebration that involves a large-scale gathering of friends and family increases your chances of contracting COVID-19.

The safest way to celebrate the holiday is by being vaccinated (if eligible) against the coronavirus, advises the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). And if you’re unvaccinated, wearing masks helps, too.

Read on to learn about what you can do to help ring in Thanksgiving safely with loved ones.

Holiday travel

If you’re considering traveling for the holiday or an event, visit the CDC’s Travel page to help you decide what’s best for you and your family.

If you’re not fully vaccinated but have to travel, follow the CDC’s domestic travel or international travel recommendations for unvaccinated people.

Thanksgiving Day safety recommendations

Celebrate with family and friends via video chat, the CDC advises. But if indoor gatherings are inevitable, the centers say the following recommendations can protect your health:

  • Wear well-fitting masks over your nose and mouth if you’re unvaccinated and in public indoor settings.
  • Even if you’re fully vaccinated, the CDC advises that you should wear a mask in public indoor settings in communities with substantial to high transmission. Check the CDC’s COVID-19 Data Tracker to learn the COVID-19 trends at your holiday destination.
  • Being outdoors is safer than being indoors.
  • Avoid crowded, poorly ventilated spaces.
  • If you’re sick or have symptoms, don’t host or attend a gathering.
  • Get tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have close contact with someone who has COVID-19.

If you are gathering with a group of people from multiple households and potentially from different parts of the country, you could consider additional precautions (e.g., avoiding crowded indoor spaces before travel, taking a test) in advance of gathering to further reduce risk.