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  • Yelena McCafferty

Public Holidays in Russia in 2019

This week I was on BBC Radio Lincolnshire explaining why Russians celebrate Christmas on 7th January. Curious? Have a listen here.

So if Russian Christmas is in January, how about 25th December? It’s a normal working day for both Russian children and adults alike. The big winter holiday is New Year and that’s when Father Frost (Russian Santa Claus) comes and puts presents under the festive tree called New Year tree. New Year gives a start to a long winter break for Russians and just before 2019 takes over the reins, New Year’s Eve is a day off this year too. In 2019 the festive holidays end on 8th January – a long break for working adults and school children alike!

The next public holiday in Russia will be on 23rd February to mark the Defender of the Fatherland Day, but because it falls on a Saturday, one day will be carried over to a May Day break a few months down the line. 23rd February has always been regarded as an unofficial men’s day. The International Women’s Day comes a couple of weeks later, on 8th March, and is a distinct public holiday.

May holidays commence on 1st May which is the Day of Spring and Labour, and round off on 5th May.

Victory Day on 9th May is another important occasion never to be forgotten: by humble estimates the USSR lost 27 million people in World War II so Russians treat this day with special honour and respect. It falls on the day after Victory in Europe (VE) Day because by the time the victory was announced back in 1945, the clocks struck midnight in Moscow and a new day began.

Wednesday, 12th June is Russia Day and Monday, 4th November is National Unity Day. And this completes the list of public holidays in Russia in 2019.

[Tip: If you want to send someone in Russia your best wishes for a particular holiday, please email us and we will translate your message for you.]


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