FAQ: What Is a Common Paid Holiday Schedule? (Plus Its Benefits)

An employer-paid holiday is paid time off that allows an employee to observe a holiday if they choose. Typically, employer-paid holidays are part of a larger compensation package that also includes other paid time off, such as vacation days and sick days.

Typical Paid Holiday Statistics Schedule

The Federal paid holiday schedule includes New Year’s Day, the Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., President’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Indigenous Peoples Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day, in that order.

Holiday Pay & Time Off – Your Questions Answered

What are the different paid holiday schedules?

Here are some common paid holiday schedules that your company can follow:

Federal holiday schedule

The federal paid holiday schedule is the schedule that federal employees follow. However, some private companies often recognize these paid holidays and other holidays including:

Paid holiday schedule

There are some less recognized paid holidays that companies can give their employees. Whether an employee has these holidays off depends on what holidays their company includes in its paid holiday schedule. These holidays often include:

State holiday schedule

State holidays are holidays that a specific state may recognize. For example, Arizona and California recognize Cesar Chavez Day, while North Carolina and Vermont are among more than a dozen states that recognize Indigenous Peoples Day. The owner of a company can decide if they want to recognize state holidays as paid or unpaid holidays for their employees.

Floating holiday schedule

Many companies offer floating holidays, which are paid holidays that employees can take when they want. Companies might give their employees a few floating holidays for special events, birthdays, cultural holidays or religious holidays that arent on other paid holiday schedules. Employees can also use these days to extend holiday weekends, personal vacations or other paid time off, such as making a three-day weekend into a four-day weekend.

What is a common paid holiday schedule?

A common paid holiday schedule is a schedule that many companies use to determine which paid holidays they give to their employees. The United States government doesnt require companies to give their employees paid holidays, but many companies offer paid holidays to give their employees a break and an incentive to continue working there. Paid holidays are typically part of a compensation package that employers give to all their employees.

Many paid holidays align with federally observed holidays, which include:

If a paid holiday is on a weekend, many companies give their employees the closest weekday, typically a Friday or Monday. For example, if a holiday is on a Sunday, the paid day off will probably be the following Monday. If a holiday is on a Saturday, then the paid day off may be the preceding Friday.

What are the benefits of a paid holiday schedule?

Paid holiday schedules can be valuable assets for a company and its employees. Some of their benefits may include:

Attracting employees

Having a paid holiday schedule can be an incentive for employees to work for your company. Attracting employees is important for your company because it can grow the size of your company, which may help increase visibility and profits. If you offer more paid holidays than your competitors, candidates might be more likely to apply to work for your company.

Lowering stress

Paid holidays can be an efficient way to help lower stress in the workplace. Breaks from work can be essential for mental health and overall happiness for employees. Giving your employees paid holidays may allow them time to celebrate events, spend time with friends and family and relax. Employees with lower amounts of stress may be more likely to enjoy their work, which can increase productivity levels and work efficiency.

Improving attendance

Having all employees present at work can increase profits for your company, so its important to give your employees paid holidays to help improve daily attendance. For example, if your team members express they want the Easter holiday off, you may reduce absences on that day by allowing them the day off to observe that holiday. By planning to have specific holidays off you can plan to supplement the work.

How do you decide which holidays should be PTO?

Here are some ways to help you decide which holidays your business will offer as paid time off (PTO):

Review your budget

Consider reviewing your companys budget to help you decide on the number of paid holidays. For example, a larger company can probably afford more paid holidays than a smaller company. If you own a smaller company, you can consider prioritizing which holidays you or your employers would prefer.

Look at similar businesses

Consider looking at what holidays similar businesses or competitors offer to help you choose your paid holiday schedule. You might decide that you want to offer more holidays than similar businesses in order to reward candidates who come to work for your company. You may also decide to match what other businesses are offering so that you have the same amount of PTO.

Ask your employees

Another way to help you choose your paid holiday schedule is to ask your current employees what holidays they want. This can help you discover which holidays your employees would most like to observe. For example, if your employees want Black Friday as a paid holiday, then you might give them that day. You might ask for their input by sending a survey or by holding a meeting to hear their opinions.

Choose company hours

Another thing to consider is whether you should close your company on holidays. Staying open can be beneficial if you want to earn profits or get work done on certain holidays. For example, its common for restaurants and grocery stores to stay open at least partially on holidays. You might also decide to have limited hours of operation and offer compensation to employees who work that day.

Consider the seasons

When implementing your paid holiday schedule, think about how the seasons might affect your business. This means looking at how different seasons may affect your company and adjusting your schedule based on that factor. For example, if you own a swimsuit business, you might be busier in the summer than in the winter, so you might offer fewer paid holidays during summer and more paid holidays during winter.


What are generally paid holidays?

What Are the Most Common Paid Holidays?
  • Memorial Day.
  • Independence Day.
  • Labor Day.
  • Thanksgiving Day.
  • Christmas Day.
  • New Year’s Day.

How many holidays should a company give?

Usual Paid Holidays
  • New Year’s Day,
  • Easter,
  • Memorial Day,
  • Independence Day (4th of July),
  • Labor Day,
  • Thanksgiving Day,
  • Friday after Thanksgiving, and.
  • Christmas Day.

What is common paid time off?

Are Employers Required To Provide A Certain Number Of Paid Holidays? Yes, federal employers are required to give those 11 federal holidays off to full-time employees or offer replacement holidays to make up for them.

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