Edited: 09.06.2020 - 11:13

Keywords: Employment terms and conditions

Taking annual holiday

Summer holiday (maximum 24 weekdays), must be granted in the summer holiday period from 2 May to 30 September. Winter holiday (portion of holiday exceeding 24 weekdays, usually 6 weekdays), is granted at other times.

Holiday days include all weekdays, including Saturdays. Religious holidays, Independence Day, Christmas Eve, Midsummer’s Eve, Easter Saturday and May Day are not holiday days. If holiday falls in the week of May Day, for example, May Day is not a holiday day – for calculating holiday days it is “skipped”.

Employers determine the dates of annual holiday, but employees must be given the opportunity to express their wishes. Efforts should be made to accommodate these wishes, but they do not bind the employer. Impartiality must be observed in the timing of annual holidays.

As a general rule, the dates of annual holiday must be notified no later than one month before the start of the annual holiday. This notice is binding on the employer. If an employer breaches a notice issued, that is changes the dates of holiday already notified, the employer may have to compensate the employee for damages, for example compensate the rent of a summer cottage that the employee has already paid.

Summer holiday and winter holiday must be granted as uninterrupted periods. An employee and an employer may agree amongst themselves that the portion of holiday exceeding of 12 weekdays is taken in one or more periods. An employer may not unilaterally require holiday to be split, unless this is essential to keep work going. In service sectors it is in practice rare for there to be situations where an employer is entitled to order annual holiday to be taken in periods.

Annual holiday may not begin on an employee’s day off, if this entails a reduction in holiday days. Annual holiday may not be placed without the employee’s consent during maternity or paternity leave. Holiday may, on the other hand, be placed during parental leave.

The collective agreements contain rules on the timing of days off and earning annual holiday weeks.


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