hold a virtual gathering.
How to safely attend restaurants
If you’re thinking about going to a restaurant, you should:
- Avoid packed, poorly ventilated places where you can’t social distance.
- Choose times when it won’t be crowded.
- If there are too many people, find another restaurant or opt for carryout.
- Wear a well-fitted mask when you are not eating and drinking.
- Wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer.
- Bring your vaccination card and/or keep a copy on your phone if you’re in a community that requires patrons to show proof they’ve been vaccinated.
- Choose your dinner companions carefully. Most of the risk comes not from diners at other tables necessarily, but from those who are sitting at your table if they are from other households.
How to safely grocery shop
Shopping for groceries and running other errands tend to be less risky than eating at a restaurant. If you’re at risk for severe illness, consider going out when stores are least busy, such as early morning, Lin suggests.
How to safely travel
Travel poses challenges because it’s difficult to stay at least 6 feet apart from strangers in airports, train stations, planes and trains. You also need to assess the risk at your destination. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers county-by-county COVID-19 rates.
Whatever you do, the best protection during the Omicron surge is to get vaccinated and boosted, but it’s important to remember that vaccines “are not 100% effective, which is why we are seeing some breakthrough infections, especially with the Omicron variant,” Lin shares.
“But in general, breakthrough infections are mild for those who are vaccinated, and vaccines do an excellent job of preventing severe infections and death,” he adds.