Is a Bank Holiday a Public Holiday?

In short no, Bank holidays are not Public Holidays. The banks are always closed on Public Holidays but they also have additional holidays which are not Public Holidays.

Ireland has nine Public Holidays:

  • New Year’s Day (1st January);
  • St Patrick’s Day (17th March);
  • Easter Monday;
  • First Monday in May;
  • First Monday in June;
  • First Monday in August;
  • Last Monday in October;
  • Christmas Day (25th December);
  • St Stephen’s Day (26th December).

Employees have entitlements to pay for Public Holidays under the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997. Employees who are normally required to work on the day of the Public Holiday are entitled to either:

  • A paid day off on the day of the Public Holiday
  • An extra day’s annual leave
  • A paid day off within a month
  • An extra day’s pay.

Employees who would not normally work on the day the Public Holiday falls will be entitled to one fifth of their normal weekly pay, once they have worked 40 hours over the previous 5 weeks.

If the Public Holiday falls on a day the business is normally closed, for example in 2019 St Patrick’s Day falls on a Sunday, employees are still entitled to Public Holiday pay and while a lot of businesses will close on the next working day, this is not a legal requirement.

If Public Holiday calculations are causing you a headache, consider outsourcing your payroll processing to our expert team.


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