As the New Year approaches, many people have big celebration plans. However, we must keep in mind that we’re still in a pandemic. The Omicron variant of Covid-19 has been dominating this holiday season and is spreading rapidly. I get it, the ordinary lives we’ve once had before have been on hold for the past two years, and many are eager to get back to living. But let’s make sure we’re considerate of other people’s lives, like those who are more immune to the virus, by being cautious while we celebrate bringing in the new year. Here are five ways to stay safe this New Year’s Eve.

Stay at home.

We’ve been hearing “Stay at home” for the past two years, but honestly, it’s the best way to protect yourself and others. This year is a little different because families can have small gatherings at home, especially those who are vaccinated. Have a safe, slight party at home, bringing in the new year with those you love.

Wear a mask.

If staying at home is the last thing on your list, please wear a mask. Covering your face not only protects you but others as well. Face coverings can get a little annoying, but if you’re going to be around large groups of people, it’s mandatory to ensure safety with little space.

Stay Sanitized.

Keep a bottle of hand sanitizer and Clorox fabric spray around you. It’ll kill germs on your hands and clothing while you’re out. Use both before you leave your home and after.

Keep Your Distance.

Even before the pandemic, no one wanted someone in their personal space. If possible, stay at least 6 feet away from people while you’re out celebrating. If not possible, this is where the mask and sanitation come in handy.

Drink responsibly. Get a ride home. Keep an eye on friends.

Unfortunately, every year there’s a news story about a missing person who was out partying on New Year’s Eve. Please drink responsibly, and do not drink more than you can handle. If you do, please get a ride home. Usually, Ubers and Lyfts are discounted or free for a few hours on New Year’s Eve.

Lastly, leave with all your friends. Do not leave your friends alone. Make sure you all get home safely.

We’re entering 2022 on a positive note. Make sure you have fun, but also be responsible.