Public holidays in Dublin

Irish people love to party and at certain times of the year it can seem like one four-day week after another.

The holidays are referred to as ‘bank holidays’. This dates back to a tradition started in the UK by Sir John Lubock when he wanted to give his cricket-playing staff an extra day for matches which hadn’t finished by sundown by Sunday. 

The Bank Holidays Act of 1871 set the three-day weekend as a regular treat in both countries. But don’t worry; there’s no obligation to play cricket on your day off!

Most businesses and schools close on the nine main holidays.

  • New Year's Day (1 January)
  • St. Patrick's Day (17 March)
  • Easter Monday   (Between March 22nd and April 25th)
  • First Monday in May, June and August
  • Last Monday in October 
  • Christmas Day (25 December)
  • St. Stephen's Day (26 December)

These are the days to which full-time employees are entitled to either a paid holiday.

Other days like Good Friday (the Friday before Easter Monday) is a day off for schools but usually not workers.

If you choose not to take the day – or your office is so manic that you just can’t take a day off when the rest of the world is working, these are your choices:

  • A paid day off within a month of the public holiday
  • An additional day of annual leave
  • An additional day's pay
  • The nearest church holiday to the public holiday as a paid day off

Tragically the public holiday sometimes falls on a Saturday or a Sunday. There is no automatic right to just take the following Monday off. You can however take one of the above options instead.

For more detailed information see the Citizens Advice website here

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