A holiday is a day set apart by law or custom, where normal daily activities, particularly work or school including church or office are suspended or completely reduced. In most cases, such holidays are planned to enable people to celebrate or remember an occasion or tradition of historical or cultural importance. For instance, New Year’s is the time for New Year’s Eve celebrations, Christmas is the time for Christmas celebrations, Easter is the time for Easter celebrations and Hanukkah is the time for the celebration of the Jewish New Year. Every country celebrates their holidays differently, but generally it involves some form of public expression of grief over the death of a loved one or some other significant event.
Holidays are generally associated with happy memories and good wishes to loved ones. But as life goes, so do the number of accidents, illnesses, deaths and other incidences. This creates the need for companies to provide suitable holiday pay for their employees. Holiday pay is provided either as a fixed amount per annum or on a relative basis. Some holidays, like Christmas, Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day are generally more expensive than other holidays because of the high demand for work staff.
All over the world, there are many traditional observances of different religions. While some holidays are observed for their spiritual purposes, like Christmas, others are observed for reasons that have less religious connotations. Some holidays, like observances of national cultures, schools, family history and military actions are considered non-working holidays. But even these are observed by employees if they have permission from their company. Usually, companies have to ask permission from employees before they decide to observe a national holiday in their workplace.
In the US, religious holidays have a high-profile. Thanksgiving, Christmas and Hanukkah are major religious holidays which are observed throughout the US. In addition, other major national holidays such as Valentine’s Day, Flag Day, In Loving Memory Day and Veterans Day are also popular among employees. Although, employees may not get paid holidays, they are more likely to participate in holidays. On the other hand, in most countries of the world, the government does not officially recognize or endorse any religious holiday.
As far as the type of holiday is concerned, it varies greatly from country to country. In the US, the Christmas holiday pay rate is usually higher than the rest of the pay rates. For example, in Australia, the holiday pay rate is similar to the US, while it is higher in Canada. In general, the cost of holidays differs by country, ranging from low cost to expensive ones.
When companies observe special religious holidays, they also tend to change the procedures of how employees are compensated. This makes it harder to predict how employees will react to holidays. To avoid this problem, companies should make sure they are aware about the holiday pay policies and give out the same to all employees, in case there will be a need for holidays.