Paid Good Friday and Easter Holidays Prevalent Around the World

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By Molly Ward

April 3 — Many employers throughout Europe and the Americas are required to provide employees with paid leave in recognition of the Christian Easter holiday. Easter holidays also are observed in some African and Asian countries.

The observance of Easter across the globe varies. Some countries, such as Australia, Canada and New Zealand, mandate that Good Friday be a paid holiday. Other countries include Easter Monday and the Thursday before Good Friday.

Europe

Good Friday is mandated in Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

Good Friday is not mandated in Austria, Belgium, France, Hungary, Luxembourg, Lithuania and Poland.

Good Friday is an observance in the Netherlands, not an official holiday. Easter Monday is an official holiday.

This year in Greece and Bulgaria, Easter is April 12. Employers in Greece must pay all employees bonuses at Easter, typically equal to half a month's salary.

Central and South America

Good Friday is mandated Aruba, Argentina, The Bahamas, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Panama and Venezuela. In Venezuela, the Thursday before Good Friday is also a mandated holiday.

Africa

Good Friday is mandated in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Tanzania.

In Ethiopia, Easter is celebrated a week late. For 2015, the paid Easter holidays are on April 10 and April 12.

Asia

Good Friday is mandated in Hong Kong, Indonesia, The Philippines and Singapore.

To contact the reporter on this story: Molly Ward at mward@bna.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Baer at mbaer@bna.com

Jared Mondschein contributed to this story.

More information on payroll issues in the countries mentioned can be found within the International Payroll Decision Support Country Primers.