Staying During Winter Break

Important Numbers  •  Services on Campus  •  Winter Break Programming  •  Resources 

Our campus community becomes quiet over the Winter Break: You’ll see only a few people walking through the hallways or laneways, a handful of individuals in common rooms or spaces, and many areas normally bustling with activity will be quiet or even empty. 

A number of supports will be in place to ensure the safety and security of students staying on campus during the winter break. It’s important you fully read and understand the information we’ve provided you here, follow the processes we’ve put in place for you, and abide by our Residence Standards.


Can I stay in residence over the winter break?

As per the Residence Contract, students pay for their housing and meal plans on a per-term basis; Term 1 ends on Dec. 22, and Term 2 begins on Jan. 8. For those students in exceptional circumstances, stay-through housing may be offered for a fee of $300. As these dates fall outside of the Residence contract, the $300 fee covers the basic operational cost of keeping the residence buildings open and staffed (i.e., meal plan costs are not included)

What services are available while campus is closed?

For the weeks in between Terms 1 and 2, the campus is closed. That includes food service locations, the library, bookstore, and other amenities usually in operation during an academic term.

Students who meet the criteria to stay and have been given permission to remain in residence during the winter closure have been granted an exception due to very specific circumstances, on the understanding that the campus community closes down for the holiday break, and minimal services are available.

The $300 fee for staying in residence covers housing only. Students who remain in housing during the winter closure must procure their own meals.

Important Contacts

  • Winter Advisor On Call: 250-863-3960 | | Available 5:30 PM – 10:00 AM all days 
  • Residence Life Staff:
  • Campus Security: 250-807-8111 (emergency) | 250-807-9236 (non-emergency) | Available 24/7
  • Housing Office: 250-807-8050 | Check office hours here.
  • Health and Wellness: If you become ill over the holidays and have any questions or concerns, contact the front desk.

Keeping Us Informed

To ensure your safety and security throughout the Winter Break, we will have Student Housing Front Desk Staff and Residence Advisors available each day in case of emergencies or if you have any questions throughout the break.

1. Drop in Programming with the Residence Advisors

  • The Residence Advisors will be in the Nechako Gathering room every evening from 8pm-10pm, please stop by to hang out, play games, watch movies and connect with other students.
  • To contact the Residence Advisors between 5:30 pm -10 am please call 250-863-3960

2. Visit us at the Student Housing Front Desk in Nechako

  • The Front Desk will be open 10 am – 5:30 pm daily from December 25 – January 2 with 24 hour operations resuming on January 3
  • Please feel free to stop by if you need help with a lock out, collecting your mail or have any questions about Student Housing over the winter break

3. It is required that you notify Student Housing if your plans change and you will no longer be staying over the break.

  • This is so we know you’re not going to be around and aren’t worried when the Advisors haven’t heard from you
  • Please send an email with the dates you’ll be away to

Please remember that there are relatively few people on the campus, so we want to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable Winter Break!

Services on Campus

Please Note: There are limited services available to you over the Winter Break.

Campus Food Services

All Food Service locations on campus – including Pritchard Dining Hall – are closed during the winter break. More information about specific location hours, as well as ways to order food for delivery, can be found further down this page.

Housing Office Winter Break Hours
  • The Front Desk is open 24/7 until 5:30 pm on Dec. 24, 2022
  • Dec 24, 2022 | Open until 6 pm
  • Dec 25, 2022 – Jan 2, 2023 | Open 10 am – 5:30 pm daily
  • Jan 3, 2023 | Open 7 am, return to 24 hours
  • Mail will be delivered to the office during regular office hours and will be processed throughout the day during the Winter Break. Electronic mailboxes are accessible 24/7, but only in-person pick-ups will be available during office hours. While every effort will be made to have mail processed the same day, please be aware that processing of mail may take longer than usual.
  • Should you be ordering grocery delivery or meal delivery, please be sure to use your building address and be available for contact with the delivery drivers. The Student Housing office cannot accept grocery and or meal service deliveries such as Instacart, Uber Eats and Skip the Dishes.  
Winter Advisors

The Winter Advisors will be On Call 24hrs/day for the entire Winter Break beginning Thursday, December 24th at 12:00 pm (noon). Should you have any questions or concerns, they will be your first point of contact. They will be able to assist you with:

·         Any emergency situations

·         Being locked out of your unit

·         Key cards/keys not working

·         General questions or concerns

·         A friendly chat

  • The Winter Advisors will complete rounds of residence daily, and will need you to check in with them a minimum of two times during the break. Should you need assistance during this period, please contact the Winter Residence Advisors (250-317-9064).
  • Security is also always available should you need their services. You can reach their emergency number at 250-807-8111 or the non-emergency number at 250-807-9236.
IT Service Desk
  • December 12-22: Regular support hours
    • Phone Support: 7:30 am – 4:30 pm
    • Walk-up Support: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm (pending resourcing)
  • December 23: Early closure of phone and walk-up support
  • December 24 to January 2: Closed
  • January 3-6: Phone support only from 7:30 am – 4:30 pm
  • January 9:  Resumption of full service offerings pending resourcing
UBCO Bookstore
  • Closed December 24 – January 2
  • Regular hours to resume — January 3
  • Extended back-to-school hours — Monday January 9 – Friday Jan 13: 9am -6pm

Winter Break Programming

Global Engagement Office programming

Over the course of the Winter Break, the Global Engagement Office run a host of events that you are welcome to participate in. Want to have some fun, stay connected and enjoy some free food over the holidays? Check out what UBC has planned for you over the Winter Break, including opportunities to Volunteer at the Food Bank!

Dates for volunteering are:

December 27, 28, 29 and January 2-6

Shifts are either morning or afternoon, spots are limited so register early!

To sign up, visit

Link to register:

*students are required to organize their own transportation to the food bank*

Res Life Programming

Our Residence Advisors typically run daily events from 8PM – 10PM in Nechako’s Gathering Room, from Dec. 23 to Jan. 7. These can range from movie nights, cookie decorating, games and more! We’d love to have you attend! Please share this invitation with other UBC students who are around campus over the break.

Programming in Residence: 
  • Yoga with Claire [Nechako Gathering Room]:  January 3, 2024 – 3:10 pm – 4:10 pm
  • Residence Paint Party Nechako Gathering Room]:  January 5, 2024 – 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm



Other off-campus things to do

Festive Lights
  • Festival of Trees at Mission Hill Winery. More info here.
  • Wild Lights at Kamloops Wildlife Centre. More info here.
  • Candy Cane Lane, Rutland. Free, but donations of non-perishable food kindly welcomed. More info here.
Outdoor Skating
  • Stuart Park Ice Rink, Downtown Kelowna: Open for free, drop-in skating daily. Food Truck open during peak hours. More here.
  • Apex Skating Loop, Apex Mountain Resort, Hedley: Glide through the forest on this 1 km zamboni-maintained loop. Open daily. Tickets and skate rentals available in the Village. More info here.
  • Skating Pond, Big White: Take a spin on Canada’s highest outdoor skating rink, then warm up by the bonfire. Open daily. Free for all to use. More info here.
  • Silverstar Skating Pond, Vernon. Lace up your skates and glide across Brewer’s Pond’s 2.5-acre natural rink. Tickets are $8 per participant. Rentals available. More info here.

Sleigh Rides

  • Half hour, one hour, private, and dining tours available at Big White. More info here.
  • Choose from a hot chocolate tour, fondue tour, or charcuterie tour at Silverstar. More info here.

Taking it Easy

  • Many find that the holidays bring as much stress as they do joy. But there are ways to ease through the season. Click here for some some mindful tips to make the holidays brighter.


BC Transit Holiday Service
Grocery Deliveries

If you have access to an equipped kitchen and plan on making your own meals, consider ordering groceries online for delivery to your door. A popular and near-by option is Save-On-Foods (select “Kelowna” and “UBC” when ordering). We recommend you order well in advance of your preferred delivered date. Take a look at the blog post below for advice on what to cook.

Meal Deliveries

Skip the Dishes has a huge variety of restaurants (including fast-food and local restaurants) that deliver to campus. 

Meal Kits

Popular Meal Kit delivery services (requires equipped kitchen) include:

These links may also be useful: meal kit reviews, comparisons and discounts.