Celebrating Halloween During a Pandemic


Halloween, like many other events during the COVID-19 pandemic, will feel different this year. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has classified door-to-door trick-or-treating as a high-risk activity for transmitting the coronavirus. However, for those who would still like to celebrate the Halloween festivities, a few additional health and safety procedures should be followed.

The CDC guidance around Halloween groups activities by risk level: Virtual events like online costume or pumpkin-carving contests carry the least risk; small outdoor events and indoor in-person gatherings where everyone is masked and 6 feet apart are considered moderately risky; and medium- to large-size gatherings, as well as close contact from door-to-door trick-or-treating, pose a high-risk for spreading the virus.

As of October 21, the CDC updated its definition of what counts as close contact with someone who has COVID-19 and that is being within 6 feet of someone for 15 minutes or more, over a 24-hour period. Some localities have also imposed limits or issued stern warnings about traditional Halloween activities such as parades, haunted houses, and crowded indoor parties.

People over 65 or those with underlying health conditions face greater risk for poor outcomes should they contract the coronavirus and should consider their own risk threshold when deciding whether to participate in Halloween activities this year. Therefore, we have listed a few tips and alternatives for celebrating Halloween safely this year for those who choose not to trick-or-treat.


Safety Procedures for Trick-or-Treating

If you cannot imagine not giving treats to neighborhood kids, maintain proper social distancing at your front door or porch, wear a face mask and sanitize your hands often.
• Give out treats outdoors if possible and avoid direct contact with trick-or-treaters.
• Skip the homemade goods this year — individually packaged goodies are a safer bet.
Place candy into individual bags in a Halloween-themed bowl or stack paper plates with candy for trick-or-treaters.
To prevent direct contact with the children, wear clean gloves when serving candy.
Create a socially distant candy chute made of cardboard and attach it to your porch rail to safely send out goodies to trick-or-treaters.


Safety Procedures for Trick-or-Treaters

• Make your cloth mask a part of your costume, but do not wear a costume mask over your cloth mask as it can cause difficulty breathing.
• Bring hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol with you and use it after touching objects or people. Wash your hands whenever possible with soap and water for 20 seconds.
• Have neighbors drop the candy directly into your candy bag or bucket to avoid touching.
• Remember that there may be a curfew throughout the Halloween weekend and to return home on time.


Alternatives to Trick-or-Treating

• Organize a Halloween-themed scavenger hunt around the backyard or in the house.
• Tell spooky stories around a firepit (don't forget the s'mores!) after screening an outdoor movie.
• Have a virtual Halloween-themed trivia night with the extended family and friends.
• Make spooky treats with the children and eat them while watching Halloween movies.
• Visit a one-way, walk-through haunted forest, corn maze, pumpkin patch, or orchard.
• Carve pumpkins with members of your household or outside with neighbors or friends.
• Walk around the neighborhood to admire all the Halloween-themed house decorations.
• Create outdoor games for the family such as mini-pumpkin tosspumpkin golfor mummy bowling.

For more information and the latest updates on COVID-19, visit Global Travel Plus online. Prepare for an emergency by reading the latest news, knowing the services offered to Global Travel Plus members, and reviewing helpful resources with important information about what to do during this pandemic. 

Posted: 10/30/2020 9:00:00 AM