South Korea

South Korea increases number of public holidays with change to weekend rule


The government of South Korea has passed a revised presidential decree to allow more national holidays subject to the government’s alternative statutory holiday program.

According to the Ministry of Personnel Management, the Cabinet endorsed the decree that adds four national holidays – March 1st Independence Movement Day, National Liberation Day, National Foundation Day and Hangeul Day – to the list of legal holidays subject to the government’s alternative holiday program.

Previously, alternative statutory holidays were allowed only for the Chuseok harvest holiday, Lunar New Year’s holiday and Children’s Day if they fell on a weekend.

This leaves only New Year’s Day, Buddha’s Birthday and Christmas Day as holidays that will not be compensated by an extra day, should they fall on a Saturday or Sunday.

This means that in accordance with decree approval, August 16th, October 4th and October 11th will be observed as alternative holidays in 2021.