South Africa has 12 public holidays per year, more than most other countries around the world. Some of these holidays are celebrated in many countries worldwide such as 1 January, New Year’s Day’ and 1 May, ‘Worker’s Day’.
Various religious holidays of the different faiths are celebrated in South Africa as well, however, only the Christian holidays, Christmas and Easter, are recognised as 'official' holidays.
Africa also celebrates various remembrance holidays which commemorate the
country’s history. These are:
March: Human Rights Day
April: Freedom Day (South Africa’s national holiday)
June: Youth Day
August: Women’s Day
September: Heritage Day
December: Day of Reconciliation
Be advised that, when a holiday falls on a Sunday, the following Monday becomes a public holiday. On these days, the Sunday shopping hours usually apply, except for Christmas and Easter when most shops will be closed.
is some interesting trivia on how South Africa compares to the rest of the
Public Holidays Trivia:
How South Africa compares to the World
Number of public holidays
- South Africa has 12 'official' holidays
- The country with most is Columbia with 18 days followed by India and Lebanon with 16 each
- The country with least is Mexico with only 7 days
Did you know, that the 1 May ‘Workers Day’ is celebrated in over 80 countries world-wide (although in some countries it is called Labour Day).
Internationally, Workers’ Day is based on the industrial struggle for an eight hour week. In South Africa Workers’ Day became official in 1994 when the government recognised the role played by workers. This is the day when the achievements of labour movements are remembered and ensure that future plans continue to entrench equality in labour rights.
If we combine normal leave
and public holidays
- South Africa has 15 working
days leave a year and 12 official holidays, which means our average is a combined
total of 27 working days a year
- Employees with the potential
for most holiday time are in Austria and Malta with 38 days a year followed by
Poland (37 days) then Spain and the UK (36 days)
- The country with the least
days off a year is Canada which only has 19 days
Statutory leave (legal requirement
to give your employees leave)
- The country with most
statutory days leave is the UK (28 days)
- The country with least
statutory days leave is America - they have no mandatory leave days
- Many countries vary the
leave which employees are entitled to depending on the number of years they
have been working.
Average Work Week
- The average South African
work week is 40 hours
- If you lived in Seoul,
Korea, you wold work an average of 48 hours a week and in Hong Kong an average
of 45 hours.
- If you lived in Paris then
you would work 35 hours a week.
Do you need more insights and information about South Africa?
If you are interested in more in-depth, well-researched and up-to-date information:
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This post was shared by Derryn Campbell on the SMILE 90.4fm Thursday breakfast show with Bobby Brown and Tracey Lange. For more weekly Awesome South Africa discussions tune into SMILE 90.4 fm every Thursday morning at 7.10am. or click on the following link to listen via live streaming.
Source for South Africa Trivia: 'Awesome South Africa' by Derryn Campbell, 'Living in South Africa' and www.mercer.com
Image Credits: Shutterstock.com, Mediaclub South Africa, South Africa Tourism and own.
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