Poll: Puget Sound residents still visiting family despite pandemic warnings

Dec 10, 2020, 5:33 AM
holidays, travel, vaccine, Puget Sound poll...
A traveler passes through the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport on March 15, 2020 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

A new poll from PEMCO Insurance reveals that while Puget Sound area residents have been visiting friends in person less over the course of the pandemic, many are still seeing their families often.

UW doctor shares advice for holiday travel during the COVID pandemic

PEMCO interviewed 578 people in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties, asking them whether they’ve been seeing their friends and family less, the same, or more often “as a safety measure against the COVID-19 virus.”

Of those polled, just 28% said they were either socializing with friends more or the same amount, while 71% reported visiting friends less. Those numbers were even more stark for people over the age of 55, with 80% in the demographic visiting with friends in person less.

When it comes to seeing family, Puget Sound residents have been more hesitant to change to their habits — just 44% of those polled said that they’ve been socializing with their families less, while the remaining 56% reported seeing their families either more or the same amount.

Meanwhile, Washington health officials have been issuing warnings to the state’s residents to not gather with friends and family members for the holiday season, and with Christmas fast approaching, there have been concerns new COVID cases will continue to rise.

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“As much as we wish otherwise, the holiday season should look and feel different this year,” PEMCO spokesperson Derek Wing said in a written release. “All of us want to keep our loved ones safe while staying connected, but this isn’t the time to ease off the gas of our vigilant preventive measures.”

Perhaps an indication that the infamous “Seattle Freeze” is alive and well, 58% of Puget Sound residents polled said they plan to see their friends either the same amount or less a year from now.

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Poll: Puget Sound residents still visiting family despite pandemic warnings