I'm a little confused here so hopefully someone can help. I'm from the UK and I get 28 paid holidays a year including bank holidays.

However, the company I work for are closed for 2 days over Christmas, because of this they are currently using 2 days of my holiday entitlement for these days, is it possible for them to use my holiday for days where they are closed?

  • Would the alternative be unpaid leave, or would you expect paid (non-Holiday) time off while they are closed? Sep 26, 2022 at 14:11

1 Answer 1


Yes, they can do that, as long as they tell you about it in advance.

Your employer can require you to take all or any of your holiday at a particular time, as long as they give you the right notice at the right time and take into account certain agreements between you.


Employers can:

  • tell their staff to take leave, eg bank holidays or Christmas

  • restrict when leave can be taken, eg at certain busy periods

The notice period for this is at least twice as long as the leave they want their staff to take.

Source (official government site)

  • 1
    On a personal note, I am in Germany, which has similar employment laws and I have never been able to work between Christmas and New Year's. Always had to take between 4 and 6 days off.
    – YviDe
    Nov 27, 2015 at 19:31

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