Everything You Need to Know About Philippine Public Holidays

The Philippines has 18 National holidays. Four of these eighteen holidays are “special non-working holidays.”
For the fourteen public holidays, all workers are eligible to receive a paid day off, under the Philippines Labor Code.
In contrast, special non-working holidays don’t qualify as paid holidays. As per the Labor Act, an employee who works on the Philippines public holiday should receive twice the usual salary depending on their employment nature. Employees who report to work on a special non-working holiday receive at least one-third of their average salary.
Annually observed holidays are mostly based on religious traditions. The dates of the celebrations can vary because most of the festivals are based on the lunar calendar. The government publishes the official dates of celebrations and holidays yearly.

New Year’s Day

In the Philippines, New Year’s Day festivities begin on December 31st through January 1st. New Year’s Day is brief yet observed in a specific way across the country. This is the time of year where many Filipino families come together to deepen their family relationships. Filipinos have unique and entertaining New Year’s rituals and beliefs to make this cheerful gathering more fun and exciting, like attending the Misa de Gallo and lighting firecrackers. Read more

Chinese New Year

In the Philippines, Chinese New Year is a special non-working holiday that offers both Chinese-Filipinos and Filipinos the chance to experience the festivity. Filipinos celebrate by preparing Chinese food, seeking advice from Feng Shui experts for good fortune, and reading their Chinese horoscopes as part of the celebration. Read more

EDSA Revolution Anniversary

The anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution takes place every 25th day of February. It marks the anniversary of the peaceful protests which took place in 1986. The protests led to the downfall of President Ferdinand Marcos’ corrupted ruling. It is named the “Yellow Revolution” and the “EDSA Revolution” based on the street where the protest took place, the Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue, and the colour worn by original protesters. Read more

The Day of Valor

Day of Valor is a national holiday that we celebrate every year on the 9th of April. It marks the Bataan Peninsula fall during World War II.  On April 9th, 1942, after months of warfare among the Philippine and American armies and the conquering Japanese, the Bataan Peninsula fell. The united army of the Philippine and the US, lacking in food, medicine, and armours, were forced to surrender to the Japanese.  The Philippines and its people use this brutal war period as a symbol of the bravery and determination of the Philippine and American forces to survive even in death’s brink. It also serves as a day to honour the Filipinos who strive to fight for the Philippines’ liberty. Read more

Good Friday

Good Friday is a part of the Christian Easter Week or the Holy Week. It is a national public holiday in the Philippines, commemorating Jesus Christ’s crucifixion. According to biblical gospels, the Cross symbolizes the crucifixion. Through this ancient method of a death sentence, Jesus Christ offered himself to die on the Cross to save humanity from sin. Read more

Labor Day

People celebrate Labour Day on May 1st in the Philippines. It is a holiday honouring Filipino labourers. It is an opportunity to recognize the rights and privileges of hard-working labourers. The festival is a chance for labour groups to give time and attention to the current problems that affect the general workforce. They organize protests to call for attention for their complaints in Malacañang (formerly the American Governor’s residence, but now the Presidential Palace) and other major cities like Manila. The groups bring forth concerns like increasing the minimum salaries and finding solutions to the inhumane labour conditions before the government. All in all, the nation shares its philosophy with other countries celebrating Labor Day. Read more

Election Day

Election Day is an important and integral part of any democratic government. By using the mechanism of elections, the politicians are held accountable for what their actions lead to. They are compelled to enforce new policies that reflect and respond to public opinion. Ideally, the elections cause a significant political recruitment source, ways to make the government, and transfer government power. Read more

Eidul Fitr

Eidul Fitr is a major holiday for Filipino Muslims, which marks the end of month-long fasting during Ramadan. This year 2020, Eidul Fitr falls on May 25th, Monday. President Duterte signed Proclamation No. 944, which confirmed the nationwide holiday. During this day, Filipino Muslims perform the ritual of washing their hands before offering special prayers to Allah (God of Islam). Muslims bring obligatory donations in the form of food described as “Zakat al-Fitr” and attend special preachings on the day. After those events, some of the extended families and friends stay together to celebrate over a feast. Read more

Independence Day

The Philippines Independence Day falls on the 12th of June to remember the Philippines ‘ declaration of independence from the Spanish colonization. A parade headed by the President and public officials marks the official celebration in Manila. The AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines), together with the local community organizations and some ethnic tribes, are the parade’s highlights. Also, there are some fireworks displays in some areas in Manila. Read more

Eidul Adha

Eidul Adha is another Muslim celebration honouring Ibrahim’s willingness to follow Allah and commemorate the end of the Hajj (Mecca Pilgrimage). Filipino Muslims go to Mosques to offer special prayers and listen to sermons to celebrate the occasion. They find it necessary to wear new clothes or the best available as possible. Some Muslim families could afford to buy a live animal (like a goat, cow, or sheep) for sacrificial offerings, or share in a feast with whole or large portions of meat with other regions. It is a must that those meat are shared with the least fortunate members of the community. Read more

Ninoy Aquino Day

Every August 21st, Ninoy Aquino Day memorializes Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr.’s life and death. Senator Aquino and his wife Corazon were the main figures of modern Philippine Democracy. The first Ninoy Aquino Day was observed in 2004 after President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo proclaimed it as the day that marks his death anniversary. This holiday was part of President Arroyo’s “holiday economics” program to boost the Philippine tourism industry. Read more

National Heroes’ Day

National Heroes Day in the Philippines is a national public holiday in honour and remembrance of its national heroes. Such heroes are the men and women behind the Philippine’s history whose courageous acts helped the Philippines to grow into a nation. Filipinos celebrate the holiday by joining local celebrations (including parades, laying bouquets at shrines, and so on). Given that it is a day off for some workers, they spend the day enjoying with families and friends in parks, shopping centres, and other public places. Read more

All Saints’ Day

On the 1st and 2nd day of November in the Philippines marks the All Saints’ Day celebration. This holiday is also referred to as “Undas.” In most Catholics, the All Saints’ Day is celebrated with significance, as the Philippines is the third-largest Catholic country in the world. The country celebrates it with great enthusiasm. Historically, All Saints Day marks a Roman Catholic holiday honouring saints who have not been granted their feast days. It also signifies the remembrance of a dead person’s life. Read more

Bonifacio Day

Bonifacio Day is a national public holiday in the Philippines that falls on November 30th. As its name suggests, the festival celebrates Andres Bonifacio’s birthday, who was one of many great heroes of the country. Unlike in the case of Dr José Rizal, the country’s main national hero, Bonifacio Day falls on his birthday, instead of on his death. It was because Andres Bonifacio was assassinated not by the foreign colonizers but by his countrymen. Read more

Immaculate Conception

Every December 8th in the Philippines, Immaculate Conception Day is commemorated. On this day, devotees join special masses in honour of the Virgin Mary, who, according to the religious books, conceived without sin. This day Catholics are supposed to stop any “unnecessary jobs” to go to church and attend a mass. Read more

Christmas Day

We celebrate Christmas Day in the Philippines every 25th of December. According to the Holy Scriptures, Christmas is about the birth of Jesus Christ. He was the son of God who came to Earth to save people from their sins.  We can summarize the Christmas Day in the Phillippines in three words: Food, Family, and Faith. The churches hold early morning masses until Christmas Day, alongside with many feasts. Shopping centres and malls play Christmas carols as early as September, even up to January. Read more

Rizal Day

On December 30th of every year, the Filipinos honour the National Hero, Dr José Rizal, on his namesake day. The celebration officially starts on Rizal’s Shrine, in Rizal Park, Manila. The Philippine Flag is at half-mast, and the President offers a bouquet at Rizal’s Shrine as a token of the country’s appreciation and respect. Since it’s a holiday, most people take their break from work and enjoy the day with family and friends. Read more