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australia holiday

Australia’s Complex Holidays and How They Affect Business

Holidays can be stressful. Especially when you don’t know if you get the day off.

 

Australia’s holiday system is separated by regions. Though domestic businesses may find it easy to navigate, international companies may not be aware. If you’ve unknowingly scheduled a meeting or international trip during holiday time, this kind of stuff can be frustrating and expensive.

 

We wanted to breakdown the confusing holiday system of Australia to help your small business go international. Whether you’re visiting or just making a call to a supplier, knowing when everyone’s taking a long weekend will help you out.

 

Country-Wide Holidays

It’s not all complicated. There are holidays celebrated across the continent, and on its neighboring islands. Both religious and nation-specific, these holidays are recognized by the federal government and don’t require businesses to remain open.

New Years’ Day

Australia Day

Good Friday

Easter Monday

ANZAC Day

Christmas Day

 

And that’s it. Of Australia’s 26 yearly public holidays, only six are recognized across the continent. Now, some of these holidays are celebrated on different days depending on the state, which contributes to the grand 26-day total. So, with that, let’s check out the region-specific holidays that could impact domestic and international business operations.

 

State-Specific Holidays

Though this can also get complicated at the political level, Australia generally recognizes seven official regions. To help you understand the holiday system, we’ve listed the regions and their specific holidays. The same holiday will often show up in most regions, but may start on a different date. Don’t worry, we’re know.

 

New South Wales (NSW)

Easter Saturday: Saturday after Good Friday and before Easter Monday
Easter Sunday: Sunday after Good Friday and before Easter Monday
Queen’s Birthday: Second Monday in June
Labor Day: First Monday in October
Boxing Day: Day after Christmas Day

 

Northern Territory (NT)

Easter Saturday: Saturday after Good Friday and before Easter Monday
Labor Day: First Monday in May
Queen’s Birthday: Second Monday in June
Picnic Day: First Monday in August
Boxing Day: Day after Christmas Day

 

Queensland (QLD)

Easter Satuday: Saturday After Good Friday and before Easter Monday
Easter Sunday: Sunday after Good Friday and before Easter Monday
Labor Day: First Monday in May
Queen’s Birthday: First Monday in October
Boxing Day: Day after Christmas Day

 

South Australia (SA)

Easter Saturday: Saturday after Good Friday and before Easter Sunday
Adelaide Cup: Second Monday in March
Queen’s Birthday: Second Monday in June
Labor Day: First Monday in October
Proclamation Day: Day after Christmas Day (December 26th)

 

Yes, you read that right. South Australians celebrate Proclamation Day in place of Boxing Day. The date celebrates the implementation of a government in Southern Australia as a British province. Apparently they care more about politics than shopping.

 

Tasmania (TAS)

Labor Day: Second Monday in March
Easter Tuesday: Tuesday after Easter Monday. Government employees only.
Queen’s Birthday: Second Monday in June

 

Victoria (VIC)

Labor Day: Second Monday in March
Easter Saturday: Saturday After Good Friday and before Easter Sunday
Easter Sunday: Sunday After Good Friday
Queen’s Birthday: Second Monday in June
Grand Final Eve: Friday Preceding the Australian Football League Grand Final
Melbourne Cup Day: First Tuesday in November

 

Western Australia (WA)

Labor Day: First Monday in March
Western Australia Day: First Monday in June
Queen’s Birthday: Last Monday in September or First Monday in October

 

That was a lot. When it comes to complicated holidays, it seems Australia has everyone beat. Some of them can’t even agree on the Queen’s birthday.

 

If you’re doing business in Australia, think of it like the US. Knowing which region your partner is in is like knowing your own state. There are specific regulations and practices that other states don’t perform that can affect business, and knowing them is critical to doing business internationally.

 

After you’ve done business there for a while, these holidays will be easy to figure out. And besides, Australians are laid back. They won’t mind taking a call. After all, it’s a holiday.

 

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