Bank Holiday Pay in Ireland

There can be some confusion about entitlement to holiday pay or extra pay for workers on bank holidays or public holidays such as  Christmas Day ,  New Years Day,  Good Friday or St  Patrick’s Day.

Christmas Day, St Stephen’s Day and New Year’s Day are public holidays in Ireland .

Good Friday, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve are not public holidays.

Full List of 2020 Public Holidays in Ireland

On a Public Holiday ….

  •  All workers are entitled to one of these benefits :
    • A paid day off on the public holiday
    • An additional day of annual leave
    • An additional day’s pay
    • A paid day off within a month of the public holiday

Covid-19 : If you are laid off because of Covid-19 – you are entitled to any public holiday pay or leave for any public holidays that occur during the first 113 weeks of layoff. Although some employees might agree to waive this entitlement to help employers.
You do not accrue annual leave during lay off but you are entitled to take annual leave that you accrued before being laid off.

Full-time workers have immediate entitlement to these benefits for public holidays regardless of how long they have worked for that employer.

Part-time workers must have worked for the employer for at least 40 hours in the previous five-week period to have one of these a public holiday entitlements. ( That is a TOTAL of 40 hours in the past 5 weeks – NOT 40 hours per week.) 

Even when a public holiday falls on a day which is not a normal working day for the business (eg. a Saturday or Sunday) employees still have entitlement to benefit.

Where the public holiday falls on a day on which the employee normally works, the employee is entitled to a full day’s pay for the public holiday. (As if they had done their normal hours on that day.) If they work on the holiday they should also get their usual pay on top of the public holiday pay.

Where the public holiday falls on a day on which the employee does not normally work, the employee is entitled to one fifth of his/her normal weekly wage for the public holiday.
(If weekly pay varies – then the employer should use an average of the weekly pay over the last 13 weeks prior to the public holiday and divide it by five.)

Money Saving Tips for 2020

Examples :

  • A person works 3 days a week ( Fri, Sun, Mon) 12 hours a day. A public holiday falls on a Monday and they are required to work the usual 12 hours . They are entitled to 24 hours pay.

  • A person works 3 days a week ( Sat, Sun, Mon) 12 hours a day. A public holiday falls on a Monday and they are not required to work. They are entitled to 12 hours pay.
  • A person works part-time from Thursday to Saturday. A Public holiday falls on a Wednesday which is not one of their normal working days. (i.e Christmas Day 2019). They do not work on that day. The worker should receive one-fifth of their normal weekly pay for Christmas Day OR they should get the equivalent amount of time off. The employer can decide which option to give you.

If an employee ceases to be employed during the week ending on the day before a public holiday, having worked during the 4 weeks preceding that week, he/she is entitled to receive pay for the public holiday.

The Organisation of Working Time Act provides that you may ask your employer at least 21 days before a public holiday, which of the alternatives will apply. If your employer fails to respond at least 14 days before the public holiday, you are entitled to take the actual public holiday as a paid day off.


Where a public holiday falls on a weekend, you do not have any automatic legal entitlement to have the next working day off work.

Full List of 2020 Public Holidays in Ireland –

If you are not getting your public holiday entitlement you may make a complaint under the Organisation of Working Time Act within 6 months of the dispute or complaint occurring. You must use the online complaint form from

Share This

47 thoughts on “Bank Holiday Pay in Ireland

  1. Hi , just a question here , I’m working a year + in a take away and I was working every bank holiday since, never being paid more then normal wages , do they have the right to do so? Thanks .

    • Iulian – as it states in the article – If you are required to work on a public holiday you are entitled to be paid at your usual rate and you are also entitled to either an additional day’s pay or an extra paid day off.
      This applies as long as you have worked 40 hours or more in the preceeding month.

  2. Hi just wondering working with a new company for 5 months am I still entitled to bank holidays for Christmas eg Christmas day

    • As it states in the article –
      ” Full-time workers have immediate entitlement to these benefits for public holidays regardless of how long they have worked for that employer.”

      • Hi I’m a self employed contractor working for a Multinational based in Dublin, am I entitled to be paid for the bank holidays over the Xmas period, even if the company is closed during this time.

      • As you are self employed and not an employee of the company – the company has no obligation to give you any public holiday benefits

    • Hi I have a part-time contract till the end of December.working average 20 hrs a week.ive been told I will not be paid before Xmas in case I don’t turn up for two shifts after Xmas.
      Is this legal?

  3. I’m a part time worker, and I would like to know If my company ceases me the week before Christmas Friday 20th, I still having to get paid for my bank holiday entitlements and my holiday period. I work regularly 11.25 hours per week. I’m been working 5 weeks already. Regards

    • If you are not employed by a company on the day of a public holiday you will not be entitled to any pay or holiday pay for that day.

  4. I work 5 days over 7 but my mas roster says I have Xmas day and 1 other day off am I in titled to my 2 days off plus Xmas day

  5. Hey
    I work full time and I get 2 weeks off over xmas do its 2 weeks holiday pay but I’m unsure how that works with the 3 bank holidays over that period. Should I get those 3 days on top of my 2 weeks as I get 4 weeks per year

    • Public Holidays are not counted as annual leave. If you are entitled to 4 weeks annual leave that is on top of any public holidays.

  6. I work 3 days a week and am on a partime contract for the last 4 months. We close for 2 weeks christmas holidays. Am i entitled to holiday pay? And if so how many days. We close on the 20th of December and reopen on the 2nd of january.

  7. Hello.
    I’m full time worker. Our company do public holidays payments 2-4 weeks after. Is it correctly?
    Thank you

  8. I run a small business, it’s closing (due to seasonal down turn in business) from 23/12 till 15/1/20. Do I still have to pay my employees for the two bank holidays (Christmas day and St Stephens day) even though I’m not trading during that period.

    • Yes – If a business is closed on a public holiday and an employee would normally be due to work then they should get their normal day’s pay.
      If an employee is not normally rostered to work, then they will be entitled to one-fifth of their normal weekly wage.

  9. For example,
    I get paid anyways for an extra day on the 25th and 26th osf December. Either if I work or not.
    But what If it falls that I have to work both days? Im still getting paid for those days, but if Im working and other people are lucky enough to have off those days, I should get an extra because Im working no?

  10. I normally work two days a week Thursday and Friday. With the way Christmas has fallen my boss brought me in Monday and Tuesday. Wed been a Bank Holiday and Thursday another Bank Holiday I got 1/5pay which is wrong. For Thursday I should have got full. They then decided to close Friday should I get paid for this as I was willing to work.

    • You should get one fifth of your weekly pay for 25th and a full days pay for the 26th.

  11. I work partime and my employer decided to close on New Years Eve which is my contracted day.Should my employer pay me for this day?

  12. Hi,

    If I work a Monday to Friday can my job use Christmas Day as one of my days off and make me work the Saturday and the same the following week with New Year’s Day. My job closes on both these day by their choice

    • Your employer must pay you a days pay for the 2 public holidays (25th Dec and 1st Jan) even if you didn’t work.

  13. Can you tell me what hours in lieu I’m entitled to for Christmas day work a full time roster, 12 hr shifts

    • If you didn’t work Christmas day – you are entitled to be paid your mormal pay for that day if you usually work on that day of the week .

  14. Only started a new job in start of November I work about 20 hours a week most Wednesday I work from 2 to 6 hours shud I got paid for Christmas day

    • If , over the 5 weeks before Christmas day, you have worked for a total of 40 hours or more – then you are due a public holiday entitlement for Xmas day .
      This should be one fifth of your average weekly pay

  15. Hi
    I work full time for over 2 years and in my Job I am required to work Xmas day which I did. I got my normal wage the week later but nothing extra for working Xmas day. Our employer gives us 2 days paid off after Xmas instead. I am curious does that cover for working Xmas day or should I have been payed for working Xmas day regardless of having those 2 days paid off
    Thank you.

    • As it states in the article –
      If you are required to work on a public holiday you are entitled to be paid at least your usual rate AND you are also entitled to either
      an additional day’s pay or an extra paid day off.”

      You are getting an extra paid day off – so this is in line with the rules.

  16. Hi i worked christmas day and new years day. I am just curious everyone is saying its tripple pay for xmas day is that so or can anybody help on what i am entitled too

    • It’s all explained in the article.
      Some employers might pay “triple pay” – but that is up to them.
      We have just outlined the minimum entitlements for public holidays.

  17. As a salaried employee, am I entitled to a day off for a Public holiday if I didn’t work on that Public Holiday.
    ie In a 7 day week, I work 5 days and have 2 days off.
    If one of my days off falls on a Public Holiday, am I entitled to an extra day off for this?

  18. Hi i work part time but Stephens day fell on one of my work days so can you tell me if i was entitled to a full days pay because of that and also i work a on commission and basic rate but only get One fifth of my basic pay for my bank holiday days is this correct or should i be getting one fifth of both basic and commission together

    • The regulations state that workers should get one fifth of average pay – including commission.
      The average daily pay should be calculated over the 13 weeks prior to the public holiday.

  19. Hi I work Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday every week , my employer decided to close New Year’s Day , which was a Wednesday, I got paid a percentage for that day , am I entitled to a full days pay .

  20. Hi i work part time 20 hrs my employer said im not entitled to any bank holiday pay for xmas day st Stephens day and new years they have rostered days to make up my 20 hrs as I work Mon Wed Fri just wondering can they not pay me for the bank holidays because i worked my 20 hrs

    • They have to pay you one fifth of your normal weekly pay for each one of the 3 public holidays – even if you didn’t work those days.

  21. Hi I previoulsy started working as a Secretary for a bus company maybe doing 10 to 12 hours a week. Just wondering should I have got paid for the public holidays and bank holiday.

    • Can you give more details of hours worked and which holidays you are asking about ?

  22. Hi, I would like to understand if have salary contract 12000, monthly getting 1000. Usually 40h a week. So I worked for a company 5 months and always getting the same 1000 in a month, but in December we worked 25 and 26. So they paid double rate for it. So my question is how they supposed to pay our salary with 2 public holidays with double rate. Thank you

    • Hi Julie
      I’m not sure what you are asking.
      You say you got paid double rate for 25th and 26th of Dec – which is right. You should see the extra pay in your wages.
      But it may be that your employer is giving you two paid days off instead? They should let you know if that is what they are doing.
      By the way – your wages seem very low. They are below the minimum wage which is currently €9.80 an hour.
      You should be getting around €20,000 a year not €12,000 – that should be your main worry !

      • Hi, thank you for your response. I gave an example of payment. But if to from my salary, let say I getting salary in a year 29380, monthly I receive 2448. So the last month of the year, they decided to calculate by hours as we worked on 25 and 26. So I received my payslip where is basic hours 152 – 2147, then 16*2 – 452.00 and 8*1,25 – 141. So my question why? Because if in October we worked 23 days of shift, then November I worked 21 days shift and December I worked 19 days and plus Christmas. So from my opinion they did wrong calculation. Could you please explain me if I’m wrong. Regards

  23. If I work part time Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday every week (2.5 days a week) and there are 9 bank holidays in the year, mostly Monday, should I get extra bank holidays (eg Stephens Day) even if I’ve had 6 bank holidays off already this year?
    Am I entitled to an additional day off? As I ‘missed’ a bank holiday when I wasn’t in work?

    • To slightly muddy it, I work 8.5hr on a Monday of my total of my 18.5hr week, does that get factored in or not?

Comments are closed.