It may still be December, but it's never too early to start planning summer holidays. Photo: Mikkel Bigandt/Iris
If you're working in Denmark, take note that you're already one of the luckiest employees on the planet when it comes to annual leave, before you even factor public holidays into the equation.
By law, firms have to give full-time staff 25 days off, with many offering even more generous policies. You usually have the right to take three consecutive weeks off between May and September, which is why it feels like the cities empty out in July and August as residents disappear to their summer houses.
But as well as paid vacation days, there are around nine public holidays each year. Plenty of workers schedule their breaks away around these public holidays. However, you don't usually have to.
For much more on how holidays work in Denmark, make sure you read this primer.
Denmark’s public holidays are bunched up mostly in the early part of the year and so after June, there is only Christmas. However, the period between June and Christmas is when the bulk of those five weeks of vacation are typically used, so it’s not bad at all.
To get the most out of the upcoming year’s holidays, keep these following dates in mind when you make your vacation plans.
Public holidays in Denmark in 2017:
New Year's Day falls on a Sunday in 2017, so you miss out on a day off, and unlike neighbouring Sweden, Epiphany on Friday, January 6th is not a holiday in Denmark.
Thursday, April 13th – Maundy Thursday (Skærtorsdag)
Friday, April 14th – Good Friday (Langfredag)
Sunday, April 16th – Easter (påske)
Monday, April 17th – Easter Monday (2. påskedag)
To make the most of this, take Tuesday-Friday April 18th-21st off and get an eleven-day break at the cost of only four vacation days.
Monday, May 1st – International Worker’s Day, or Labour Day, is technically NOT a public holiday but many employers, especially in the public sector, give employees the day off. Check with your boss to see if you’re one of the lucky ones.
Friday, May 12th – Great Prayer Day (Store bededag)
Thursday, May 25th – Ascension Day (Kristi hilmmelfartsdag). Taking Friday off is an easy way to get a four-day weekend by cashing in just one day of holiday.
Monday, June 5th – Whit Monday (2. pinsedag). This is also Constitution Day, which is normally a day that only some employees get off. But with the two holidays overlapping in 2017, we’ll all get it.
Friday, June 23rd – Midsummer's Eve (Sankt Hans Aften). This is NOT a public holiday but it might be worth taking off if you want to secure a good spot for your nearest witch-burning.
Sunday, December 24th – Christmas Eve (juleaften)
Monday, December 25th – Christmas Day (juledag)
Tuesday, December 26th – Boxing Day (2. juledag)
Sunday December 31st – New Year's Eve. Just like Midsummer's Eve and Christmas Eve, this is not technically a public holiday but is often treated as such anyway. In 2017 it falls on a Sunday, so you won't get much out of it.
However, the week between Christmas and New Year's is ideal if you want to use up some of your holiday allowance – just make sure you get there before your Danish colleagues do.