Feiertage: Austria’s Official Holidays

Travel Tips — By Lorraine Seal on December 7, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Photo: Flickr user p2bg

With thirteen official holidays throughout the year, Austria is very generous with its public holidays. Of these, ten are specifically religious in origin. Even if the holiday falls on a weekend, it is always observed on the day on which it falls. Holidays are not moved to the nearest Monday, nor do workers get a free day in compensation for a holiday falling on a non-work day.

National Day, 26th October, is the year’s patriotic celebration, marking the return of national sovereignty at the end of the post-World War II occupation.

Of the religious holidays, six are ‘movable feasts’; linked to Easter, their dates change from year to year. In addition, although Christmas Eve (Heiliger Abend) is not an official holiday, it is an important family day, so most of Austria shuts down at midday. Also, many workers take the week off between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

These are the official holidays in Austria for 2012:

January 1       Sunday           Neues Jahr                    New Year’s Day

January 6      Friday              Dreikönigsfest             Epiphany

April 9            Monday           Ostermontag               Easter Monday

May 1              Tuesday          Tag der Arbeit             Labour Day

May 17           Thursday        Christi Himmelfahrt  Ascension Day

May 28           Monday           Pfingstmontag              Pentecost Monday

June 7            Thursday         Fronleichnam               Corpus Christi

August 15      Wednesday    Maria Himmelfahrt    Assumption of Mary

October 26    Friday              Nationalfeiertag           National Day

November 1  Thursday        Allerheiligen                 All Saints’ Day

December 8    Saturday       Maria Empfängnis       Immaculate Conception

December 25  Tuesday        Weihnachtstag             Christmas

December 26  Wednesday    Stephanitag                  St. Stephen’s Day

Public holiday are observed widely. Most businesses close for them, and public transportation runs on holiday schedules. However, in Salzburg and other tourist centres, restaurants, attractions and even some shops remain open.

Austria observes Daylight Savings. In 2012, clocks go forward one hour on 25th March (GMT+2). Standard Time (GMT +1) resumes on 28th October.

Fröhliche Weihnachten und Alles Gute für das Neue Jahr!


Tags: ‘Travel Tips’, Calendar, Holidays


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