Despite increasing pressure to drop his Christmas bubbles for the festive season, the Prime Minister has confirmed the plans will still go ahead.
Although Boris Johnson admitted the situation with coronavirus is now ‘worse’ than when the rules were initially set, he is asking the public to be vigilant in order to ‘save Christmas’.
He told a Downing Street press conference: ‘While it would not be right to criminalise people who made plans and simply want to spend time with their loved ones, we’re collectively, across the UK, governments at every level, asking you to think hard and in detail about the days ahead.
‘We’re keeping the laws the same but we all want to send the same message: a smaller Christmas is going to be a safer Christmas and a shorter Christmas is a safer Christmas.
‘When we say three households can meet on five days I want to stress these are maximums and not targets to aim for.’
The law has been relaxed to allow groups, or ‘bubbles’ of three households to mix indoors between December 23 and 27.
But the PM has called for people to take ‘personal responsibility’ over their actions and has set out some new guidelines he recommends people follow so everyone can have a safer Christmas.
Metro.co.uk has outlined them below.
Reduce the number of people you meet
Mr Johnson said everyone should attempt to cut the number of people they meet over the festive period where possible.
‘A smaller Christmas is going to be a safer Christmas and a shorter Christmas is a safer Christmas,’ he explained.
‘When we say three households can meet on five days I want to stress these are maximums and not targets to aim for.
‘It’s always going to be safest to minimise the number of people you meet.’
Cut contacts five days before forming bubbles
The PM has asked people to try and see as few people as possible in the days leading up to Christmas to reduce the risk of infection.
‘That means if you are visiting others over Christmas we’re asking you in the five days beforehand, as early as this Friday, to reduce the number of people you are in contact with to the lowest possible,’ he said.
Don’t travel from higher tiers to lower ones
Mr Johnson is encouraging people to stay as local as they can, and try not to stay overnight at other households or move between tiers where possible.
‘If possible don’t travel from a high prevalence to a lower prevalence area and avoid staying away from home overnight if you can,’ he said.
Avoid meeting vulnerable or elderly people
The PM reminded people that the Covid-19 vaccine is being rolled out into the New Year, and said people should consider delaying seeing older or more vulnerable relatives until after their jab.
‘If you have an elderly relative you might want to delay seeing them until they have been vaccinated,’ he added.
Avoid Boxing Day crowds and 2021 celebrations
He said people should avoid large gatherings at all costs – particularly rushes to the Boxing Day sales and ringing in the New Year.
Mr Johnson said: ‘And whatever your plans for Christmas, please think carefully about avoiding crowds in the Boxing Day sales.
‘And no one should be gathering in large groups to see in the New Year.’
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