This year, do the holidays at home

This season, our choices matter. San Francisco is experiencing a major surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. While this is a time to celebrate with loved ones, it is not a normal holiday season.

Our choices have a direct impact on how many people will get sick from COVID-19 this winter. Do your part this year, so we can come together next year.

Celebrate by doing activities at home with people you already live with. Remember to wear your face covering if you leave home!

What’s allowed and not allowed


  • Activities at home with people you live with
  • Remote parties with friends
  • Outdoor gatherings with food or drink, with up to 6 people from 3 different households
  • Takeout from a local restaurant
  • Outdoor dining at a local restaurant
  • Wear your face covering if you leave home


  • Singing, chanting, shouting, or playing wind or brass instruments with people you don’t live with
  • Unnecessary travel, especially to a holiday festival

See guidance about safer holiday travel.

Do not

  • Gather with more than 25 people from 3 households, inside or outside
  • Celebrate indoors with anyone who doesn’t live with you
  • Go to a local festival or block party, where larger crowds may gather

These activities are banned during the pandemic.


Ideas for a safer holiday

At home
  • Prepare traditional family recipes with people you live with
  • Create holiday decorations or crafts
  • Have a virtual dinner and share recipes with loved ones who don’t live with you
  • Takeout a holiday meal from a local restaurant
  • Mail or email holiday cards
  • Watch sporting events, parades, and movies at home, or remotely with friends
  • Design your own face coverings
Religious ceremonies

Attend ceremonies online. It is the safest option.

If you do decide to attend an in-person religious ceremony, choose an outdoor service. See more guidance for going out.


Do short visits in a backyard, park, or open outdoor space.

Everyone should check their health before going out. Stay home if you feel sick or were exposed to someone with COVID-19.

Outdoor activities must have no more than 25 people from 3 different households. If you will have food or drink, up to 6 people from 3 different households can attend.

Everyone must stay 6 feet apart and wear face coverings.

Holiday shopping and gift giving

You can support local businesses by shopping online. Pick up your items curbside or have them delivered.

Mail your gifts. You can also ask the store to ship them.

You can also drop off gifts in person while staying 6 feet apart:

  1. Clean your hands before and after handling gifts.
  2. Have everyone wear a face covering before meeting.
  3. Meet the recipients at the end of a driveway or yard.
  4. Put down the gifts, and step away.
  5. The recipients can then take the gifts.

Organizations hosting a toy, food, or clothing or collection drive or giveaway must follow Safer Holiday Celebration Guidance under “Holiday Toy, Clothing, & Food Drives Or Giveaways.”

If you feel sick, skip in-person holiday activities this year and stay home.

Celebrate the holidays at home!

In this video

Gathering indoors with members of other households and sharing food isn’t worth the risk. Celebrate safely with members of your household and join family and friends via video chat. Support your local small business owners by shopping and dining safely, and wearing a mask.


San Francisco is experiencing a  severe rise in COVID-19 cases. 

Many holiday activities pose a high  risk of spreading and catching COVID-19. 

Gathering indoors with other households  and sharing food isn't worth the risk. 

Your choices this holiday season will have  a direct impact on how the virus spreads. 

Celebrate safely with members of your household  and join family and friends via video chat. 

Support your local businesses by shopping  and dining safely, while wearing a mask. 

Whatever you do, avoid high-risk activities  like indoor holiday parties, large celebrations,  

and events that involve sharing food or drink. If you decide to gather in-person: 

meet outdoors and limit your gathering  to no more than three households 

keep six feet apart from  others not in your household 

wear a face covering at all  times and wear it properly 

do not share food drinks or  any other common objects. 

Remember, we are in this together. Remember, we are in this together. 

Do your part to make sure that San  Francisco has a safe holiday this year.

View transcript
A mother puts a mask on her young daughter.
Remember to wear a face covering approved for COVID-19

Always wear a face covering to protect yourself and others, if you’re around people you don’t live with.


Holidays At Home is part of We Will Recover, a citywide campaign to promote San Francisco’s recovery from COVID-19.