10 Ways To Visit Santa In Calgary in 2020
Not even a pandemic can stop Santa Claus from bringing smiles to kids and parents in Calgary this year. If you’re hoping to keep up your annual tradition of a visit with Santa, there are still quite a few locations offering in-person photo ops in 2020. If you’d rather social distance with the man in red, there are some great options for virtual Santa visits available as well. We’ve rounded up a list of 10 ways you can plan to schedule a visit with Santa in 2020, whether it’s face to face or through a screen!
Here’s how to safely see Santa in person across Calgary.
Calgary’s Ultimate Santa has two different options this year for Santa photos.
Outdoor Mini Sessions – November 22.
Weekend Before Christmas Experience – December 19-20
Check online to see availability for bookings. You must book an appointment in advance for your preferred visit type.
Outdoor Mini Sessions – $250 for 20 minutes with Santa, which includes a 20 minute private outdoor Santa experience complete with 10 digital images delivered via digital download and 25 Custom Christmas Cards. The location is yet to be announced.
Weekend Before Christmas Experience – $150 for a 15-minute visit with Santa. Wear your PJs and bring milk and cookies to make the visit extra special! All digital images will be shared via USB. This visit takes place at The Saskatoon Farm.
Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s both have the same hours and process for visiting Santa. The only difference is their locations, with Bass Pro Shops located in CrossIron Mills and Cabela’s at Deerfoot City.
Santa arrives on November 7, 2020.
Check online to see availability for bookings. You must book an appointment in advance. Reservations are available up to 7 days in advance. Bring your booking confirmation at the time of your appointment.
One free 4×6 photo and free digital download. Other photo packages and Christmas cards are available for purchase and instant print at the store.
Your contactless visit with Santa will take place on either side of an acrylic “Magic Santa Shield”. Masks will be worn by all of Santa’s helpers, and masks must be worn by guests as per city regulations. Temperatures of all family members will be taken at the time of your visit, and all surfaces are sanitized between visits.
Where: The Food Lodge
November 21 – December 24
Check online to see availability for bookings. You must book an appointment in advance. Payment can be made onsite.
Photos are $20 a sheet. Additional sheets are $5. There is a “Buy 1 Get 1 Free” promotion for the month of November. A free digital file will also be e-mailed to you.
As per city bylaws, all visitors must wear a mask, including during the photo. If you are comfortable, you can request that Santa remove his mask for the photo. Your visit with Santa will take place on either side of an acrylic barrier, which will be taken away during the photo. You must answer a health screening questionnaire prior to your appointment and apply hand sanitizer before and after entering the photo space. All touchpoints are sanitized between appointments.
Where: The Holly Jolly Tree Farm (Upper Level, near Hudson’s Bay and H&M)
November 13 – December 24
Appointments must be booked in advance. Bookings open on November 6 at 10:00 am.
As per city bylaws, all guests, as well as Santa and his helpers, must wear a mask, including during the photo. All staff and guests are required to have their temperature taken prior to their contactless visit with Santa. Numerous hand sanitizing stations will be provided, and designated waiting areas will be marked out to promote social distancing.
Where: Best Western Plus, Okotoks – 100 Southbank Road
November 21 – December 15
Appointments for your 5-minute visit with Santa must be booked in advance. If you must cancel due to illness, your appointment can be rescheduled.
$55 for a 5-minute slot with Santa complete with a USB of all images from the session (different poses and family members can pose for a variety of shots).
Masks must be worn into the building, but may be removed during your visit with Santa. Santa’s health is screened daily. 5 minutes is spent between each family session to clean and sanitize. You must practice social distancing during your visit, but there will still be an opportunity for lots of great shots!
Cadillac Fairview Malls will be offering in-person and virtual Santa visits this year, but the details are yet to be released. Keep an eye out on their website and in their newsletter for more information.
Virtual Santa Visits
If you feel more comfortable keeping your distance, here are some great virtual options this year.
When: December 8, 10, 22
What it looks like:
Prior to your child’s visit with Santa, you’ll be sent a questionnaire to fill out with information about your child to make the visit extra special. Your kiddos will have 15 minutes to visit with Santa via Zoom, where they can listen to a story, share some virtual milk and cookies, ask questions about the reindeer, or anything their little hearts desire!
When: December 3-6
Regular Sessions start at $34.99 per session. VIP sessions are $149.99 per session.
What it looks like:
Regular tickets include a special session with Santa Claus for up to 10 families at a time. The session will feature personalized Santa greetings to each family, a short story, plus one-on-one time for families to take their own individual photos or screenshots with Santa, and have their children tell Santa what they would like for Christmas.
VIP tickets provide children with 15 minutes of one-on-one time with Santa and Mrs. Claus. The session will include a personalized Santa greeting, a story with Santa and Mrs. Claus, Christmas gift requests and an opportunity for families to take a virtual photo or screenshot with Mr. and Mrs. Claus. If you’ve got friends or family in your cohort who would like to share in teh experience, invite them along!
When: Any time!
Videos range in price from free to $5.49. 3 tiers of passes can also be purchased which allow for different bonus features and access to videos. A Video Pass is $11.99, a Magic Pass is $17.99 and an Ultimate Magic Pass is $49.99.
What it looks like:
Portable North Pole allows you to make a variety of personalized videos featuring Santa and all his friends at the North Pole. Free videos include your child’s name, picture, birthday, city and activity, while paid videos include features like a live call during the video, interactive games, an appearance from Mrs. Claus, a “Nice List” certificate, games, and more.
When: November 21 – December 23
There are 3 price options available: A 2-3 minute Pre-Recorded video for 1 child is $28; A 6-8 minute conversation with 2 kids is $48; An 8-10 minute conversation with 2 kids is $58. For all options, each additional child is $8.
What it looks like:
A pre-recorded video for 1 child includes personalized conversation and your child or children’s names, as well as a downloadable video file. The in-person conversations allow you to pick your favourite Santa for your video call and include your child(ren)’s names and a copy of your e-visit. The longer call also includes personalized conversation.
Will you be visiting Santa virtually or in-person this year? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this very Covid Christmas in the comments!