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Danish word of the day: Sommerferielukket

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The Local ([email protected])
Danish word of the day: Sommerferielukket

Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Unsplash and Nicolas Raymond/FlickR

A word often met with a summer sigh of frustration.

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What is sommerferielukket? 

Sommerferielukket is a compound word made up of sommer (summer) + ferie (holiday) + lukket (closed). So it means 'closed for summer', and you'll see it on signs in hair salons, cafes, shops, libraries, and other businesses throughout July and sometimes beyond.

Denmark’s long summer holidays are written into law: most employers are legally obliged to allow their workers to take four consecutive weeks off in the summer. Naturally many of them jump at the chance, particularly if they have small children, whose børnehave (kindergarten) will also be sommerferielukket.

READ ALSO: What are the rules for taking annual leave in Denmark?

Why do I need to know sommerferielukket?

Some large Danish companies meanwhile halt operations altogether over summer, and small business owners often decide to do the same. Authorities like municipal offices can also shut down non-essential services.

This all adds up to a strange feeling of emptiness in the bigger cities in July in particular, as those who haven't gone abroad will often head to their rural summer houses. And the summer closures can be frustrating to those who aren't used to the system, especially since they coincide with the tourist season.

All the same, it's good to be aware of the custom so you don't get caught out when that restaurant or shop you really wanted to visit is closed for the rest of the month.

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Examples

Vi har sommerferielukket frem til uge 31. Vi ses d. 1. august!  

We are closed for the summer until week 31. See you on August 1st!

Herning Kommunes kontorer holder sommerferielukket i uge 29.

Herning Municipality’s offices will be closed for the summer holiday in week 29.

READ ALSO: Why do Danes insist on using week numbers instead of dates?

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