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Poll: Less than one third plan to celebrate Christmas with a smaller group this year

According to an Uutissuomalainen poll, those in Helsinki and Uusimaa are most likely to downsize holiday groups.

Joulukuusi koristeineen.
The THL urges people to celebrate at home in groups of less than 10. Image: Henrietta Hassinen / Yle

Less than one third of Finns surveyed (31 percent) in November said they planned to celebrate Christmas with a smaller group this year, according to a poll carried out for the Uutissuomalainen newspaper group, which includes 20 regional and local newspapers.

Sixty-one percent of respondents said they intended to observe the holiday with the same size group as in the past. One percent said they planned to do so with a larger group than usual.

"Uusimaa region the most difficult"

Those most likely to downsize holiday groups were in Helsinki and Uusimaa (37 percent). Least likely to do so were in western Finland, where only one fifth intend to observe the holidays in smaller circles.

"The Uusimaa region has long been the most difficult area in terms of the epidemic, which is reflected in these figures," Emmi Sarvikivi, a medical specialist at the National Institute for Health and Welfare of Finland (THL) told Uutissuomalainen.

Uutissuomalainen also quotes social anthropologist Miia Halme-Tuomisaari of Lund University, who notes that it is not possible to determine from the results whether those who say they plan to celebrate in smaller groups have done so in much larger groups before.

Uutissuomalainen says that polling firm Tietoykkönen interviewed 1,000 mainland Finns in November for the survey.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the THL recommends that people celebrate at home in groups of less than 10.

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