Bank holidays are holidays when banks and many other businesses are closed for the day. Public Holidays are holidays which have been observed through custom and practice, such as Christmas Day.
Find out about the bank and public holiday dates in Northern Ireland and employees' rights to pay or time off on bank holidays.
Bank and public holiday dates
The expected dates of bank and public holidays in Northern Ireland for this year, and the next year, are listed below.
|New Year's Day||2 January||1 January|
|St Patrick's Day||17 March||19 March*|
|Good Friday||14 April||30 March|
|Easter Monday||17 April||2 April|
|Early May Bank Holiday||1 May||7 May|
|Spring Bank Holiday||29 May||28 May|
|Battle of the Boyne / Orangemen's Day||12 July||12 July|
|Summer Bank Holiday||28 August||27 August|
|Christmas Day||25 December||25 December|
|Boxing Day||26 December||26 December|
*In 2018, as St Patrick's Day falls on a Saturday, the holiday falls on the following Monday (19 March).
Special bank holidays
There are laws that allow the dates of bank holidays to be changed, or other holidays to be declared, for example to celebrate special occasions.
Time off for employees
As an employer, you don't have to provide paid leave on bank and public holidays, though many employers will provide this. Any right to time off or extra pay for working on a bank holiday depends on the terms of the contract of employment with your employees.
For more information about paid leave, see know how much holiday to give your staff.