Public Holidays 2015 and 2016

We currently have public holidays for 2015 and 2016 listed. Scroll down to view.


One of the most historic and scenic countries in the world, France offers employees relatively short work weeks, amounting to 35 hours. According to French labour laws, Sunday is regarded as a mandatory day of rest for most employees. In many small villages and towns in France, the majority of shops and businesses are closed during the morning hours. One of the few exceptions pertains to boulangeries. Most national monuments, cathedrals and museums are closed on Tuesdays.

France officially observes 11 public holidays. The entitlement to paid holidays is at the discretion of the employer through either an employment contract or collective bargaining agreement with trade unions. Some regions and departments in France observe two additional holidays.

All employees are entitled to public holiday compensation after one months’ employment. French law mandates that work should stop and employees should be paid only for May Day, called the Fěte du Travail. All other paid holidays are solely at the discretion of the employer. In France, if a public holiday falls on a Saturday, no time off is granted. If an official public holiday falls on a Thursday, most businesses allow employees to take Friday as a “bridge” day, allowing for an extended four-day weekend.

Unlike other European countries, if a public holiday falls on a Sunday, French employees are not entitled to take the following Monday as a paid holiday. French law is silent as to whether employees required to work on public holidays are compensated at a higher rate than normal salaries.

Summer Vacations and Employee Benefits

Given the fact that the work week is only 35 hours, employees are paid at a rate of 25 percent above normal wages for an initial eight hours of overtime per week. Any hours worked in excess of eight hours are compensated at a rate of 50 percent above normal wage, known as time-and-one-half. French labour laws guarantee all employees a minimum daily rest period of 11 hours, which essentially amounts to an evening off. Employees are guaranteed a weekly rest period of 35 consecutive hours, including Sundays.

In addition to entitlement to paid public holidays, French employees are guaranteed a minimum of five weeks of paid vacation per year. This amounts to more than six weeks of paid leave per year. Most French government offices, businesses and retail establishments are closed for at least two weeks at the end of July or in early August. Large metropolitan cities and small towns are essentially shut down, allowing the perfect opportunity for employees to take vacation or personal leave. Most French people leave the cities and flock to the beaches or mountains for a four-to-six week sojourn.

Public Holidays 2015

1 JanThuNew Year's Day
3 AprFriGood Friday
(only in Alsace and Moselle)
6 AprMonEaster Monday
1 MayFriLabour Day
8 MayFriVictory in Europe Day
14 MayThuAscension Day
24 MaySunWhit Sunday
25 MayMonWhit Monday
14 JulTueBastille Day
15 AugSatAssumption of Mary
1 NovSunAll Saints' Day
11 NovWedArmistice Day
25 DecFriChristmas Day
26 DecSatSt Stephen's Day
(only Alsace and Moselle)

Public Holidays 2016

1 JanFriNew Year's Day
25 MarFriGood Friday
(only in Alsace and Moselle)
28 MarMonEaster Monday
1 MaySunLabour Day
5 MayThuAscension Day
8 MaySunVictory in Europe Day
15 MaySunWhit Sunday
16 MayMonWhit Monday
14 JulThuBastille Day
15 AugMonAssumption of Mary
1 NovTueAll Saints' Day
11 NovFriArmistice Day
25 DecSunChristmas Day
26 DecMonSt Stephen's Day
(only Alsace and Moselle)