Shop at home this holiday season

Holiday+shopping+was+once+known+as+a+joyous+tradition%2C+but+COVID-19+has+taken+it+away%21

Sunyu Kim

Holiday shopping was once known as a joyous tradition, but COVID-19 has taken it away!

Paul Vozzella, Staff Writer

 The holiday season can quickly creep up on us while the stress of everyday life fills our minds with worries; it is often called the most wonderful time of the year!

Black Friday and holiday shopping in general have been an annual tradition for Americans, as a means to give back to the people closest to them. 

This winter, however, a new system was instituted in order to ensure the safety of all shoppers. Previous holiday seasons are known for their unbelievable lines as desperate clientele attempt to find the best deal at each and every retail store.

As students from Westford Academy begin to venture into the shopping scene, the risk of contracting the virus rises. I have remained an outsider from the hustle and bustle that this time of the year brings. It is just not worth it to risk my family’s health by visiting stores, when the internet serves as a remarkable tool to obtain all the gifts I could ask for.

The closest I have been to shopping in-person over the last few weeks has been the grocery store, and even there it seems very risky with the high influx of people buying food in order to prepare for the upcoming festivities.

With the influence of COVID-19 looming over America, the usual congestion of retailers needs to be regulated as to prevent the spread of the deadly virus. Though it is frustrating to allow a virus to purloin with the joys of everyday life, it is necessary for the safety of all citizens.

Critics all over the United States have denounced major stores for continuing to encourage their consumers to visit this season, but I think that they are handling it in the best way possible so both parties can thrive. 

“We’ve been very thoughtful as we planned this year’s event. By spreading out deals over multiple days and marketing our hottest deals available online, we expect the Black Friday experience in our stores will be safer and more manageable for both our customers and associates,” executive Vice President of Walmart Scott McCall said.

McCall’s promises have stood true to this point, with the retail giant electing to open at 5 A.M. while utilizing tools such as forehead thermometers, floor signs, and personal protective equipment in order to promote social distancing and ensure the safety of consumers and staff.

With Walmart putting forth its best efforts to keep people safe, I think that retail stores have finally put their customers before their profit. If this behavior continues, America could recover faster than originally projected.

It is near impossible to contain the spread of COVID-19 during this holiday season though. Even with all the right precautions that have been put in place, I have seen various instances in which a large sum of people group together in an attempt to purchase the hottest deal or item a store provides, from footage provided by news giants like ABC and NBC. 

If just one customer in said group is infected with the virus, it could cause a catastrophic outbreak that would ruin this joyous time of year for both the company and consumers involved. 

In general, I think that stores should continue to recommend the purchasing of their products on the internet as it is in everyone’s best interest and safety. Jeff Bezos’ Amazon has thrived over the last six to seven months, with no issues with shipping and delivery. As to protect yourself, please utilize this website rather than endangering everybody in your community by going shopping in person.

I believe that the holiday season is meant to bring people together, but this year that is unrealistic. Resist the temptation to make a quick gift run as to escape the house, you may be saving a life.