Is Christmas 2020 cancelled? How to make Christmas 2020 happen!
Financial help with unsecured personal loans from Loans 2 Go…
Last autumn we ran an article called Is it too early for the C word?! We recognised that it was a little early for some people to be thinking about Christmas, but suggested that it was in fact a good idea to at least start making plans about who goes where, and also to set a budget to prevent you overspending.
But what about this year? It has been such a difficult year and we still don’t know what lies ahead. We hear of scientific reports warning that this winter could be tough: with a possible resurgence of Covid-19 as well as seasonal flu and other typical winter health issues. With Covid-19 still around we can only assume that there might unfortunately be local or other targeted lockdowns at some point. But we just don’t know what the next few months will bring.
Which all makes it very difficult to do any meaningful planning for Christmas. Do we plough ahead as normal and assume that we will either have family staying with us or we go to them? Can we get away for a short break? Do we book a Christmas lunch at a local restaurant? Do we even dare think about any kind of office party?
On the one hand we don’t want to make too many plans that might then need to be changed. But on the other hand, if we delay making plans, then find nearer the time that things can go ahead, lots of venues and travel tickets are likely to already be fully booked.
So here are some things that you can do now to make Christmas 2020 happen.
Arrange to see family and friends
It’s a good idea to map out your ideal Christmas and agree who is going where and when. You will all be doing this on the basis that you can but knowing that there is a risk that you can’t. So, we also suggest making contingency plans – see below. But it gives you something to work towards and to look forward to.
Book travel arrangements
If you need to buy train or plane tickets for the above visits then do so, as prices tend to go up nearer the time. If your train or flight is cancelled by the operator you should be entitled to a refund.
Similarly, with package holidays or flights abroad, if they are cancelled by the tour operator or airline, you are entitled to a full refund.
If you plan to travel abroad, and want to be really sure of being covered, there are now some travel insurance companies offering policies that cover you for Covid-19. For example Trailfinders has a policy with extensive Covid-19 cover including cancellation prior to travel, curtailment of your trip, quarantine, and medical expenses whilst overseas.
Book Christmas lunch
There should be no risk in booking Christmas lunch at a restaurant. Venues are now used to operating safely under Covid-19 guidelines. But check the current Covid-19 guidelines (e.g. only two households meeting inside together) when you do book. Also check their cancellation policy: in the event of a local lockdown then they would have to close and you would not be able to go, but see what the situation is if you had to cancel the booking, for example due to illness.
Plan your office party
At the time of writing, the current restrictions are that only two households can meet together inside – including in a pub or restaurant. It is still a government directive that we cannot hold or attend any celebrations – including parties – where it is difficult to maintain social distancing.
However, some businesses and venues are allowed to host gatherings for larger groups, and there are also plans to scale back social distancing restrictions further by November. So, it may be worth discussing your requirements with a local venue and seeing if they can provisionally put something in place for you for a small Christmas event for the office.
But if this doesn’t seem right for you then why not plan a virtual office party instead? A few ideas for how to do this could include:
- Zoom drinks and snacks
- Virtual escape rooms
- Christmas quiz via Zoom or chat
- Zoom karaoke
- Fancy dress conference call
- Secret Santa by post
So even if you can’t meet face to face, you can still celebrate the spirit of Christmas in an alternative way.
Plan your Christmas shopping
This year more than ever you really do need to do your Christmas shopping early. If you’re one of the many people who always intends to do this but never gets around to it, then now is your chance!
The main reason for this is that because of the uncertainty, we don’t really know if or when we will see people during the Christmas season. So, the best thing to do is probably to give them presents whenever you do see them. They can then put them away for Christmas, just in case you are not able to meet again before then.
Also bear in mind that in local lockdowns, shops may be forced to close again. Even online stores may have supply shortages or delivery issues because of the effects of the pandemic. So, you really can’t risk leaving everything till the last minute as usual.
The best thing to do is to make a list now of all the presents you have to buy, set a budget (for more help on how to do this take another look at our Is it too early for the C word?! article), and get shopping!
Make contingency plans
As we said earlier in this article, we are living in very uncertain times and nothing can be taken for granted. So, it’s a good idea to have a contingency plan for Christmas. Think through what you would do if you were not able to host/visit family or friends as planned. Make plans for an alternative Christmas.
Stock up in advance with food that you like. It doesn’t have to be Christmas food unless you want it to be. Make sure you have done your present shopping well in advance, and that you have plenty of games and things to do. Whether you are on your own or have a large family in the house, ensure that you have food, drink and entertainment to enjoy the Christmas period whatever is happening.
Let’s hope that by Christmas things are actually returning to some kind of normality. But we hope that the above ideas will help you to prepare for a good time whatever happens.
If you need any short term financial help to get ready early for Christmas, then do get in touch with Loans 2 Go. A small unsecured personal loan could help you to get everything in place now rather than risk leaving it all till the last minute.
Check back here soon for more financial and lifestyle tips from Loans 2 Go.