Three households, eight people, five days.
The Scottish government has advised that during Christmas and the festive period “bubbles” of three households in Scotland should contain no more than eight people. This rule is part of the government’s guidance for Christmas which temporarily relaxes some of the coronavirus restrictions for five days.
On Tuesday, it was announced that the four nations of the UK would all be lifting certain restrictions between the dates of December 23-27, so as to give families a proper chance to celebrate Christmas together. But First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has that said the “default advice” and “safest position” was still that people should avoid contact.
The guidance, released today (26 November), states that the “safest way to spend Christmas and the festive period is to stay within your own household, in your own home and your own local area”.
It adds: “Wherever possible you should keep in touch with friends and family members from other households through technology – or, if you decide to meet in person, you should minimise the numbers and duration, and if possible meet out of doors. Consider a Christmas walk with family, rather than a meal indoors.”
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Although three households will be allowed to meet indoors and stay overnight in the same home, the Scottish government says a two-metre distance should be kept between people from different households. However, children under 12 will be exempt from the physical distancing rules and will not count towards the total number of people in the bubble.
The guidance from the Scottish government also states that Christmas bubbles in Scotland can only gather in a private home, outdoors or at a place of worship. They will not be allowed to visit pubs, restaurants or go to shops together, nor can they stay in tourist accommodation as a group. Single households should also not travel in or out of level three or level four areas in Scotland to use tourist accommodation, according to the guidance.
Once December 27 has passed and the Christmas grace period is over, Scotland will revert to their five tier system that’s been implemented since the start of November. For more information regarding the festive period, take a look at the Scottish government’s guidance here.