Imagine planning a business strategy and overlooking a significant cultural pulse—the Singapore public holidays. Each holiday echoes the harmony of a richly diverse nation, shaping consumer behaviors and, in turn, your business landscape.

Here’s the thing: holidays aren’t just breaks from the daily grind; they are economic and cultural touchpoints that influence market dynamics.

As you’ll discover, these festive days chart more than just a calendar—they narrate the rhythm of consumer spend, the surge in tourism, and the strategic opportunities for businesses like yours.

In this deep dive, we’ll unpack the significance of Singapore’s national holidays, from Chinese New Year to Christmas Day, and how they can pivot your business plans.

You will learn to navigate the public holiday calendar effectively, integrating Singapore statutory holidays into your strategy for peak performance.

Through this exploration, anticipate a comprehensive toolkit to capitalize on the nation’s festive fervor, ensuring your business thrives in Singapore’s vibrant milieu.

Singapore public holidays

Public Holiday2024 DateDay of WeekObservance
New Year’s DayJanuary 1MondayNational
Chinese New YearFebruary 10SaturdayCultural
Chinese New Year Second DayFebruary 11SundayCultural
Good FridayMarch 29FridayReligious
Labour DayMay 1WednesdayNational
Vesak DayMay 22WednesdayReligious
Hari Raya PuasaJune 8SaturdayCultural
National DayAugust 9FridayNational
Hari Raya HajiJuly 30TuesdayCultural
DeepavaliNovember 3SundayCultural
Christmas DayDecember 25WednesdayReligious

What are the holidays in Singapore like?

Singapore observes 10 public holidays each year. Half of them are movable and half fixed. 7 of these holidays are related to religions such as Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, and Hinduism. The remaining three celebrate cultural and national events.

Half of Singapore holidays are movable because they don’t follow the Gregorian calendar.

Singaporeans celebrate the following 10 holidays:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Chinese New Year’s Festival
  • Good Friday
  • Labor Day
  • Eid-al Fitr
  • Vesak Day
  • Hari Raya Haji
  • Independence (National) Day
  • Deepavali
  • Christmas Day

The president is authorized to add additional public holidays as he sees fit. In Singapore, holidays that fall on a weekend move to the following Monday instead.

5 Movable Singapore public holidays to remember

Movable holidays in Singapore are all linked to religion. They’re not fixed because they don’t follow the Gregorian calendar. Instead, they’re based on either the lunar, Islamic, or Indian calendar.

Chinese New Year Festival

With such a huge Chinese population, it’s no surprise that Singapore decided to make Chinese New Year a public holiday. In many Asian cultures, the lunar new year is much more important than the standard one.

Since the lunar calendar is based on the phases of the moon, it falls on a different day each year. However, it always happens between the winter solstice and early spring. The festivities last for two to three days. Should it fall on a weekend, it’s moved to the following Monday.

Eid al Fitr

Eid al Fitr or Hari Raya Puasa is a Muslim religious holiday. It celebrates the end of Ramadan, a holy month in the Islamic religion. The month is marked by repentance and fasting. It’s also the time during which Muslims express their love for one another.

This month shifts from year to year as it follows the Islamic calendar.

Vesak Day

Vesak Day is a public Singapore holiday dedicated to Buddhists. It celebrates the birth and life of Buddha. Most institutions close down on this day. This day is based on the lunar calendar, hence why it is movable.

It typically falls on the night of the full moon during the fourth lunar month. It moves to Monday if it would fall on a weekend otherwise.

Hari Raya Haji

Hari Raya Haji or Eid al-Adha is a Muslim holiday celebrating the Haj pilgrimage. In Malay, the words Hari Raya Haji stand for the great day of Haj. This religious holiday commemorates the day when God spared prophet Ibrahim’s son by giving him a ram to sacrifice instead.

Hari Raya Haji doesn’t have a fixed day according to the Gregorian calendar. This public holiday falls on the 10th day of Zu al-Hijja, which is the 12th month of the Islamic calendar.

Most institutions don’t operate on this day. While the public holiday lasts only one day, the festivities often continue for up to four days later.

Deepavali Day

Deepavali or Diwali is a Hindu religious tradition. It celebrates the day when good and light conquered evil and darkness. Hindu families often decorate their homes with lights and give each other presents.

Deepavali shifts every year as it depends on the Indian calendar. It typically occurs between October and November. When it falls on a weekend, it’s moved to the next Monday instead. Most institutions are closed on this day.

5 non-movable Singapore holidays you should know about

Non-movable holidays in Singapore follow the Gregorian calendar and are thus fixed (except for Good Friday). Other than Christmas Day and Good Friday, they’re related to cultural and national events.

New Year’s Day

New Year’s Day is celebrated in many countries across the world, including Singapore. It falls on the 1st of January. It’s preceded by countdowns and many citizens choose to stay up through the night to greet the new year.

Labor Day

Labor Day is an international holiday celebrated in most countries. It celebrates the achievements of workers and the creation of a healthy work environment.

Most businesses close down on this day. If it falls on a weekend, it’s moved to a substitute weekday instead.

National Day of Singapore

National Day of Singapore falls on the 9th of August. Singaporeans celebrate the day they gained their independence from Malaysia, which happened in 1965. It automatically moves to the next Monday when it falls into a weekend. This day is often marked with fireworks and military parades.

Good Friday

This is the Friday preceding Easter Sunday. Christians remember the day Jesus Christ died on this day. Through his death, he ensured mankind’s salvation.

Businesses are mostly closed on this day.

Christmas Day

The second Christian holiday in Singapore is Christmas day. It falls on the 25th of December and celebrates the birth of baby Jesus. Only vital institutions such as hospitals and security function on this day. If it falls on a weekend, it’s moved to another day instead.

Are you eligible for holiday pay in Singapore?

Based on the Employment Act, you are eligible for holiday pay in Singapore. However, this is true only for the Chinese New Year’s Festival holiday. To qualify, you must meet the following 2 conditions:

  • You went to work the day before and after the holiday
  • You aren’t on authorized leave

You are eligible for a substitute holiday with pay if it otherwise falls on a weekend. If it falls on a workday, you are eligible for an extra day’s salary instead.

FAQ On Singapore Public Holidays

When are Singapore’s public holidays announced?

Knowing when to expect holiday dates is like catching the first wave—it sets the pace. The Ministry of Manpower Singapore typically releases the official public holiday calendar well in advance, often the year before.

Businesses and planners, mark your calendars early to ride the seasonal ebbs and flows.

How many public holidays does Singapore have?

Eleven. It’s not just a number, it’s a rhythm of rest and celebration in the Lion City. Singapore packs eleven gazetted holidays, from cultural festivals like Deepavali to the cherished National Day of Singapore.

Each a chance to breathe and reboot, personally and professionally.

Can employees be required to work on a public holiday?

Mandatory work on holidays? Sometimes, yes. But, straight from the Employment Act, the rule is clear: employees get paid extra or a replacement day off.

It’s a fair game, ensuring everyone gets their due, whether in wages or well-deserved rest.

Do Singapore public holidays affect business operations?

Absolutely. Think reduced manpower, closure of banks and government bodies, and a day less in the arena.

For retail and hospitality sectors, though, it’s often showtime with potential spikes in sales and customer footfalls.

Is there a difference between public holidays and bank holidays in Singapore?

It’s like calling a square a rectangle. Bank holidays are part of the broader category of public holidays.

While the country pauses, banks especially down their shutters, syncing with the official rest. For critical financial moves, take note. Cash flow waits for no holiday.

What happens if a public holiday falls on a weekend in Singapore?

Singapore plays fair here. They call it a “holiday-in-lieu” when a public holiday graces a weekend.

In simple terms, the following Monday transforms into a day of leisure. It means uninterrupted rest—plus a delay in post-weekend blues.

Are there any public holidays exclusive to specific ethnic groups in Singapore?

Nope. Singapore throws an inclusive party. While public holidays like Hari Raya Puasa and Vesak Day honor the nation’s ethnic diversity, all citizens unite under these occasions.

It’s communal, not exclusive—shared holidays for shared memories.

How does public holiday pay work?

Simple. If you work on a holiday, you’re in for a treat—double pay or a substitute day’s leave. It’s a win-win.

You either bag a bonus for your workday or gain a ticket to more downtime.

Can public holidays be swapped in Singapore?

Swapping holidays is like trading cards; a no-go. The Singapore public holiday act isn’t about personal preference but about observing gazetted days.

So no swaps. Everyone shares the same calendar and the same moments of downtime.

Do tourists in Singapore benefit from public holidays?

It’s time to feast not just for locals, but for tourists too. Public holidays open doors to vibrant celebrations, cultural shows, and a chance to see the Lion City roar to life.

It’s a fantastic palette of Singapore’s authenticity, a live postcard scene for the traveler’s diary.


Tapping into the pulse of Singapore public holidays is like sailing on the strategic sea of timing and opportunity. It’s knowing when the tide is high for business maneuvers or when the waves call for a reflective pause. These calendar markers—be it the flare of National Day or the lunar whispers of Chinese New Year—are more than just breaks from the norm. They’re cultural catalysts.

Picture this: the streets brimming with festive fervor, each holiday a chance to launch targeted campaigns, to create buzz, to offer promotions. Or simply, to stand in solidarity with the community, embracing each public holiday phenomenally.

To clinch it—whether it’s fine-tuning operations, managing staff entitlements, or aligning marketing thrusts—nailing the holiday strategy is key. Reflect on what’s been covered; the holidays, the observances, the potential. Now, cue the strategic symphony, with every public holiday a note to harmonize with. Here’s to making every festive beat count. 

If you liked this article about Singapore public holidays, you should check out this one on how many working days there are in a year.

You should also check out these other articles of ours about public holidays in Japan, South Korean holidays, French public holidays, New Zealand holidays, and also public holidays in Australia, Canada, the UK, and the US.


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