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On November 19, 2020, The Provincial Health Officer advised that all of British Columbia must significiantly reduce their level of social interactions and travel. 

The order is in effect from November 19, 2020 at midnight to December 7, 2020 at midnight.

Social Gatherings and Events

  • No social gatherings of any size other than those in your household or core bubble. For example:
    • Do not invite friends or extended family to your household
    • Do not gather outdoors
    • Do not gather in your backyard
    • Do not have playdates for children
  • All events and community-based gatherings as defined in the PHO order – Gatherings and Events are suspended. For example:
    • Galas
    • Musical or theatre performances
    • Seasonal activities
    • Silent auctions

Core Bubble

A core bubble consists of those who are in your immediate household, as well as a maximum of two people outside of those living in your immediate household (example: partner, relative, friend, or co-parent).

An immediate household is:

  • A group of people who live in the same dwelling. For example
    • If you have a rental suite in your home, the suite is a separate household.
    • If you live in an apartment or house with roommates, you are all members of the same household.

People who live alone

People who live alone cannot host gatherings. They can continue to see the same one or two people of their core bubble at each other’s homes.

University students 

Welcoming your child home from university is okay. This is not a social gathering.

Allowed activities

  • Going for a walk. You must make sure a walk does not turn into a group of people meeting outside.
  • parents carpooling kids to and from school
  • Grandparents providing child care

Restaurants and bars

The order does not impact resaturants and bars. They can continue to operate as long as they have a COVID-19 Safety Plan and employee protocols in place.

  • You should only visit a restaurant with people in your household or core bubble. Remember, a maximum of 6 people at a table.
  • Reservations for private parties that include more than one household or core bubble must be cancelled.

WorkSafeBC will be conducting inspections to verify that COVID-19 Safety Plans remain effective. Restaurants that are noncompliant with plan requirements may face orders and fines, and possible referral to public health which may result in a closure order.

Athletic Activities 

Indoor group physical activities

Businesses, recreation centers or other organizations that organize or operate high risk indoor group physical activities must suspend the following activities:

  • Spin classes
  • Hot yoga
  • High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

Guidance on other physical activities done with a group of indoors will need to follow updated guidance that is being developed. These activities can stay open while updated guidance is being developed. This includes:

  • Dance studios
  • Martial arts
  • Cheerleading

Gyms and recreation facilities 

Gyms and recreation facilities that offer individual workouts and personal training sessions can remain open as long as they have a COVID-19 Safety Plan that is strictly followed.

Sports games, competitions, and practices 

Games, competitions, and practices can continue with no spectators and no travel.


No spectators are allowed at any sport activities under the order. The only people allowed to attend sport activities are those that provide care to a participant or player. For example: providing first aid.

Travel for athletic activities 

Travel to, from, and between regions for athletic activities like games, competitions, training, and practice is restricted under this order.


High performance athletes are not included in the order. TO qualify as a high performance athlete, you must be:

  • Identified by the Canadian Sports Institute Pactific as a high performance athlete affiliated with an accredited provincial or national sports organization
  • already training in B.C.
  • Continuing to follow the safety guidelines of your provincial sports organization

Mask Requirments

Masks are now required for everyone in all public indoor settings and workplaces. People who cannot wear a mask or who cannoy put on or remove a mask on their own are exempt.

  • Employers are expected to enforce the mandatory mask policy with both employees and customers
  • A customer can be refused entry or service if they do not wear a mask.

Masks are required in all indoor public settings and all retail stores (i.e. grocery stores, coffee shops, liquor stores, drug stores, community centres, Restaurants and bars when not seated at a table).

Masks are required in all workplaces for shared work areas and areas where physical distancing cannot be maintained (i.e. elevators, kitchens, customer counters, break rooms, hallways, meeting rooms with more than four people).

Travel Advisory

At this time, all non-essential travel should be avoided. This includes travel into and out of B.C. and between regions of the province.

What is essential travel?

Individual circumstances may affect whether a particular trip is considered essential or non-essential. Essential travel within B.C. includes:

  • Regular travel for work within your region
  • Travel for things like medical appointment and hospital visits

For example, if you live in Vancouver and work in Surrey you can continue to commute.

If you need to travel for essential reasons, take the same health and safety precautions you do at home.

  • Wash your hands often
  • Practice safe distancing, 2 m
  • Travel only with yourself, household or pandemic bubble
  • Stick to the outdoors whenever possible
  • Clean spaces often

Travel for mountain sports

Ski and snowboard at your local mountain. For example, if you live in Vancouver, you should ski at Cypress, Grouse or Mt. Seymour.

Coming from outside of B.C.

At this time, people travelling to B.C. from another province or territory within Canada should only come for essential reasons. If you do travel, you are expected to follow the same travel guidelines as everyone else in B.C.

Flights to and from B.C.

The order does not restrict flights entering and leaving B.C.


During a public health emergency under the Public Health Act, the PHO can make orders as needed. You must follow the orders.

Under the Government’s Emergency Program Act, some orders can be enforced by police or other compliance and enforcement officials. People who don’t follow these order could be fined.

Workplace enforcement

In addition to compliance activities by WorkSafe, an Environmental Health Officers team will focus on workplaces in the Vancouver Coastal and Fraser Health regions to ensure COVID-19 Safety Plan compliance and enable rapid response and action.