The Best Ways to Celebrate the Holidays With Friends When You Can't Hang Out In Person

For most of us, the 2020 holiday season looks, well, different.

Calls for social distancing to stop the spread of the coronavirus mean that we're likely skipping many of our beloved holiday traditions in order to stay safe. It may also mean that we're not in the same towns as many of the friends we love to celebrate with.


(via Unsplash)

While big Christmas parties and New Year's Eve bashes will come back eventually, right now, you may be wondering how you can still make holiday memories with friends, even when you can't hang out in person. Fortunately, there's still a lot of fun to be had. Here are some ideas for how to have a safe, happy holiday with friends, even when you can't unwrap presents in person.

Have a Cookie-Baking Party

Virtually, that is. While you may not be able roll out sugar cookie dough together, you can still work off the same recipe on Zoom. The best part, as always, is decorating the cookies, and there's no reason you need to be in the same room to compare which of your Christmas tree treats actually look like their intended subject. Keep it fun by offering a prize to the best baker—like a $10 Starbucks card to whoever can create the most artistic snowman sugar cookie.

Holiday Cookies

(via Shutterstock)


Throw a Holiday Movie Trivia Night

With Christmas movies like Home Alone, Love, Actually, Elf, and yes, even Die Hard being staples of the season, it's safe to say that your friends have seen them at least once. Why not test their knowledge of these iconic movies this holiday season? Have a friend be the game master and create a series of trivia questions based on the group's favorite holiday movies, then test out your knowledge with an epic Zoom battle.


Turn Secret Santa Into a Fun Mystery Game

If you and your friends do a big gift exchange, step it up a notch this year by picking your Secret Santa gift recipient via Elfster. Instead of merely exchanging gifts on a certain date, have everyone create an alias email address and send your recipient clues to your identity and even their present—ideally as cryptic ones as possible.

Elf: Buddy singing in the store

(Elf via New Line Cinema)


Get Cozy With a Movie Over Netflix Party

There are so many great holiday movies to choose from on Netflix, and with its special "Netflix Party" feature, you and your friends will be able to call out iconic lines ("the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!") even when you're not in the same room.

The Nightmare Before Christmas: Jack Skellington dressed as Santa gives a gift to a child

(The Nightmare Before Christmas via Buena Vista Pictures Distribution)


Make A Different Kind Of Christmas List

Forget gifts. Instead of exchanging presents with your whole crew, have everyone write down a special memory that is making them feel warm and fuzzy this holiday season. Using a site like SnapFish, create a photo book featuring pictures and sweet memories that you can then all get copies of. It will be way more fun to look back on than scrolling through your earliest IG pics.


Want to read more Christmas content? Click HERE to find the best Instagram captions for all your holiday pics.