Back in June 2020, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) released the dates for all public holidays in 2021. Three of these fall on Friday while one falls on a Monday presenting us with four long weekends. If you are thinking of how to plan your annual leave to maximize travel, then this should be exciting news as you have the opportunity to plan and get a longer period of your deserved time off. If you’re planning to visit Singapore, this article will help you understand the best long weekends that you can get.
Hopefully, when the time comes, the current COVID-19 situation would be much better, and leisure travel would be convenient, and less restrictive, similar to 2019 times.
Public holidays Singapore in 2021
First, let’s have an overview of all the public holidays in 2021. Notice that three of them fall on a Friday while one falls on a Monday, therefore, presenting us with four long weekends. It is also worth noting that the Hari Raya Puasa and Hari Raya Haji dates are subject to change.
|Public holiday 2021||Date||Day|
|New Year’s Day||1 Jan 2021||Friday|
|Chinese New Year||12 Feb 2021
13 Feb 2021
|Good Friday||2 April 2021||Friday|
|Labour Day||1 May 2021||Saturday|
|Hari Raya Puasa||13 May 2021||Thursday|
|Vesak Day||26 May 2021||Wednesday|
|Hari Raya Haji||20 July 2021||Tuesday|
|National Day||9 Aug 2021||Monday|
|Deepavali||4 Nov 2021||Thursday|
|Christmas Day||25 Dec 2021||Saturday|
Some public holidays fall on a Saturday. In this case, your employer should give you a day off-in-lieu. You can choose to make use of the off-in-lieu immediately or save it for later. But that will depend on your company or employer.
How to make full use of all Singapore 2021 public holidays
Other than the four long weekends, you can make full use of the other public holidays by cleverly planning your leave to align it with the long weekends. For instance, four of the holidays will give you a long weekend if you take one day of leave. These are;
|Public holiday||Holiday period||Annual leave needed|
|Chinese New Year||Fri, 12 Feb – Mon, 15 Feb 2021 (4 days)||1 off-in-lieu (Mon, 15 Feb)|
|Hari Raya Puasa||Thu, 13 May – Sun, 16 May 2021 (4 days)||1 day (Fri, 14 May)|
|Hari Raya Haji||Sat, 17 July – Tue, 20 July 2021 (4 days)||1 day (Mon, 19 July)|
|Deepavali||Thu, 4 Nov – Sun, 7 Nov 2021 (4 days)||1 day (Fri, 5 Nov)|
|TOTAL||16 days||4 days|
With the COVID-19 pandemic, there are plenty of travel restrictions this year. But if your employer allows for rolling over of leave days, then you can carry them over to 2021 and append them to the public holidays. This should give you a longer time off.
Now let’s breakdown the public holidays month by month and see how to plan your annual leave to maximize travel.
How to clear your annual leave in December 2020
While this is technically not next year, you can get a good ten-day break here if you tie 2021 New Year’s Day with Christmas 2020. This is because New Year’s Day falls on a Friday giving you a long weekend. But again, Christmas is exactly a week before meaning it also falls on a Friday.
This is ideal if your annual leave do not carry forward to 2021, and you would be better off clearing them in 2020. By taking a four-day leave from Monday 28th to Thursday 31st December, then you will have a total of ten days of no work days!
Feb 2021 public holidays
The next public holidays will be on 12th and 13th February which collectively forms the Chinese New Year (CNY). The second day of the holiday falls on a Saturday meaning you’re eligible to an off-in-lieu day as required by the Ministry of Manpower. If you use your off-in-lieu on the following Monday, then you will have a four-day long weekend. If you take four days of annual leave from Monday 8th Feb, then you will have a ten-day leave.
In April, Good Friday will be on Friday the 2nd. This presents you with a four-day long weekend.
May, July, and August 2021 public holidays
In May, there will be three public holidays namely; Labor Day on 1st May, Hari Raya Puasa on 13th May, and Vesak Day on 26th May. Assuming the date for Hari Raya Puasa doesn’t change, then you can get a total of 16 leave days. The holidays are spaced at 13 days apart meaning if you plan your leave for this time, you may need to spend more.
If you use your Labor Day off-in-lieu on Monday 3rd May then take an 8-day annual leave starting from Tuesday 4th May, you’ll have a total of 16 days of leave. You can also choose to use your off-in-lieu on Friday 14th May or take an off for that day and enjoy a four-day long weekend.
Other than this, you can take your four-day leave from Monday 24th May to Friday 28th May with Wednesday 26th being Vesak Day. This gives you a whole week off and a total of 9 leave days. You can also get a five day leave if you take two annual leave days before of after Vesak Day.
In July and assuming that the date for Hari Raya Haji does not change, taking an off day on Monday 19th will give you a four-day long weekend.
In August, the national day will be on Monday the 9th. This means that you get a three-day long weekend.
November 2021 public holidays
In November, Deepavali will be on Thursday the 4th. If you take a four-day leave starting Monday 1st, then you will enjoy a nine-day leave.
December 2021 public holidays
Just like with December 2020, the period between Christmas and New Year’s Day can give you ten days of leave. If you take four days of leave starting Tuesday 28th to Friday 31st and then use your Christmas off-in-lieu on Monday 27th and New Year’s Day off-in-lieu on Monday 3rd Jan, then you will have a total of ten off days.