Xmas Closedowns & Public Holidays 2021

It's hard to believe we are in the 2nd week of December already.  This years closedowns and public holidays need a bit more planning than in other years and this is the key week to ensure your plans are all in place.


At least 2 weeks notice in writing needs to be factored into your planning.  So this is the last week for confirming a closedown from Christmas where staff will be required to take annual or unpaid leave. 

Public Holidays

All public holidays this festive season are falling on Saturdays and Sundays.  If these are not otherwise working days for any of your staff then the Saturday public holidays will transfer to the next Monday and Sunday public holidays will transfer to next Tuesday.   A summary of the transfers are;

Public Holiday

Day transferred to where transfer applies

Sat 25th December (Xmas Day)

Mon 27th December, 2021

Sun 26th December (Boxing Day)

Tues 28th December, 2021

Sat 1st January (New Years Day)

Mon 3rd January, 2022

Sun 2nd. January (day after New Years Day)

Tues 4th January, 2022


Payment to staff not working on a public holiday

Staff are eligible to payment if they would normally have worked on day the public holiday falls or the day the public holiday is transferred to.  Payment for public holidays is;

  • Relevant daily pay – what the employee would have earned had they worked or;
  • Average daily pay over the last 52 weeks (or since commencement) if relevant daily pay cannot be calculated.

Payment for staff who work on any of the public holidays

Payment is dependent on which days would have been otherwise working days.  For eligible days, payment is time 1.5 for actual time worked.  If a shortened day is worked for any reason then the balance of any contractual hours for that day still needs to be paid at ordinary rates.  A day in lieu also needs to be given if the public holiday is a normal day of work.

The Employment NZ website has some useful examples for working out which days would be payable.

Impacts for staff on minimum 4 weeks paid notice of termination on vaccination grounds

If you are planning a closedown this also needs to be notified in writing to any staff who are on notice of termination for Covid-19 vaccination reasons.  These staff also remain eligible to payment for Public Holidays that fall in the notice period in accordance with the Holidays Act 2003 (and amendments).  

If you need any assistance with planning your closedowns, how to calculate payments for public holidays get in touch with the Grow HR team.