If you regularly visit Southern Spain you’ll already know that the sea and sunshine make it one of the most popular all year round holiday destinations in Europe. But have you noticed that the country also has one of the world’s most generous public holiday allowances?
As a Catholic country, a number of public holidays are religious in their origin; for example Marbella celebrates Saint Barnaby (San Bernabé) on the 11th June – similarly every other town and village celebrates their patron saints with a public holiday.
Just to give you an idea of the generosity of the Spanish public holidays; throughout the UK there will be 7 bank holidays in 2016 whereas Spain has 9 national holidays plus several local holidays. In Andalucia the local holidays add up to a whopping extra 3 days – plus local saints’ days. So if you are lucky enough to live and work in Andalucia this equates to an additional 12 days holiday each year in addition to your annual holiday allowance.
Unlike the UK where public holidays are taken on the nearest Monday, Spanish public holidays are taken on the actual date that they fall, which leads to the infamous puentes or bridges. It is a common practice in Spain to ‘bridge’ a midweek bank holiday by taking the days off in between to link it to the weekend, making an extraordinary long bank holiday.
These bridges have recently come in for criticism in the light of the recent economic difficulties, as they are thought to be a contributing factor in slowing Spanish productivity. Back in 2011, the current conservative Rajoy Government said they would change this practice by moving all bank holidays to the nearest Monday, yet, a quick scan of the newly published 2016 public holiday list shows that this has yet to happen, so for now at least the puentes live on.
Here’s a summary of the UK and Spanish public holidays to help you plan your holidays:
|1 Jan – New Year||National|
|6 Jan – Epiphany (3 Kings)||National|
|29 February – Andalucia Day||Local|
|24 March – Maundy Thursday||Local (everywhere except Catalonia)|
|25 March – Good Friday||National|
|2 May – May Day||National|
|15 August – Assumption||National|
|12 October – Columbus Day||National|
|1 November – All Saints’ Day||National|
|6 December – Constitution Day||National|
|8 December – Immaculate Conception||National|
|25 December – Christmas Day||National|
|26 December – In Lieu of Christmas Day||National|
If you’re interested in viewing property for sale in Marbella or any other areas on the Costa del Sol, Bromley Estates Marbella will be open for business as usual during the Spanish bank holidays. Please contact email@example.com for more information.