Psst! Did you know that you don’t have to sacrifice your social life during pandemic? It’s true. There are lots of ways to safely talk to and hang out with current friends, as well as make new ones 

Depending on how you want to talk to or hang out with them, though, the risk of contracting COVID-19 changes. Here’s what you can do to socialize with others while remaining safe. 

Low Risk – Virtual 

Virtual gatherings have the lowest risk of infection because these don’t require face-to-face interaction. 

  • Schedule a call or Facetime session 
  • Play video games on Discord or 
  • Host a game night or regular book club over Zoom 
  • Make a Spotify playlist that others can add to 
  • Find virtual concerts and have a dance party with your roommates 
  • Host a Netflix Watch Party or bingewatch a TV show 
  • Play text message games like Game Pigeon 
  • Exercise to a workout video 
  • Host a virtual study session over Zoom 
  • Write to a pen pal 
  • Make a trendy TikTok video and compete with friends to get the most views 

Higher Risk – Small Gatherings 

Small gatherings have a higher risk of infection because although these require face-to-face interaction—masks on, of course—there’s still some space to distance yourself from others. 

  • Visit a friend in their home 
  • Have a spa night and pamper yourself 
  • Attend a backyard BBQ or make s’mores at a campfire 
  • Host a game night—make sure to disinfect any cards or game pieces before and after play 
  • Go to an outdoor movie showing 

Moderate Risk – Outdoors 

Outdoor gatherings have a moderate risk of infection because although these may require face-to-face interaction—masks on, of course—there’s generally plenty of space to distance yourself from others. 

  • Meet up with a friend outdoors 
  • Play a couple rounds of low-contact sports like golf or frisbee… or frisbee golf 
  • Go on a hike with your roommates or family 
  • Enjoy a day on the lake, from fishing to kayaking to canoeing 
  • Play hideandgoseek 
  • Go to a drive-in movie, meaning you stay in your vehicle the entire time 
  • Set your hammock up in a tree and relax 

Highest Risk – Large Gatherings 

Large gatherings have the highest risk of infection because these not only require face-to-face interaction—masks are non-negotiable—but there’s also less space to distance yourself from others. 

  • Stay at a friend’s house overnight 
  • Throw a party… surprise or planned 
  • Go to a bar or dance club 
  • Play high-contact sports like volleyball or football 
  • Go to an indoor movie showing 
  • Hang out at other crowded public places 

You have control over your risk of contracting COVID-19 based on the type of gathering you want to host or join 

So, go ahead and socialize with others—we highly encourage you do so—just make sure you’re safe while doing so. 


-Amy Nelson ’19