Last year, I wrote a list of Philippine Holidays for 2020 and made a lot of you excited. Too bad, it was mostly used for the first quarter of 2020 as there have been a pandemic, a series of lockdowns, and community quarantine. Hopefully, 2021 is brighter. Here’s a List of Philippines Holidays in 2021 [with Tips on How to Organize Your Vacation Leave Schedule].
I do not make up the holidays and schedules here. They are from Proclamation No. 986 of the Office of the President. There are already touristy areas in some parts of the country that are open though you might need many requirements. Hopefully, by the second half of the year, many more will open, and requirements might be less. However, you could still use this guide to know when to spend time with your family, have a staycation, or tour your town!
Here is the list of Philippines Holidays in 2021
*There will be an official declaration of Islam Holidays after the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos will inform actual dates to the Office of the President
Special (Non-Working Days)
If you need explanations for some Philippine holidays, here are the reasons:
Chinese New Year
Goodbye year of the Rat and Hello to Year of the Ox! Sana Oks ang year na to kasi daming malas sa year of the Rat #covid. To celebrate the Chinese-Filipino camaraderie, Chinese New Year has been declared as a holiday. I doubt there would be Dragon Dances in Chinatown or at the Malls, but you can watch shows online and eat tikoy at home. P.S. Don’t believe in Feng Shui experts who claimed 2020 was a good year for you, baka scam yon! Haha.
EDSA People Power Revolution
To commemorate where people became one and rallied to restored democracy, EDSA People Power Revolution is celebrated. It will be on its 35th anniversary this year.
Araw ng Kagitingan
The Day of Valor is when we remember our fallen heroes in Bataan in 1942. This is quite different from National Heroes Day as Day of Valor remembers the Philippine and American Soldiers that surrendered and died during World War II’s fall of Bataan.
Eidul Fitr and Eidul Adha
Both are Muslim celebrations; one celebrates the end of Ramadan, and the other is the day of Sacrifice. There is no final date yet as the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos has things to consider.
Araw ng Kalayaan
Philippine Independence Day is a celebration of the Philippine’s Independence from Spanish Colonial Rule in 1898.
Ninoy Aquino Day
Ninoy Aquino is the husband of former President Cory Aquino and the father of former President Noynoy Aquino. He got shot on this day at what is now called Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) after returning to the Philippines.
National Heroes Day
National Heroes Day celebrates the Cry of Pugad Lawin’s anniversary, where the Philippine Revolution against Spanish rule began. It was supposed to be last Sunday or Saturday of August, but cheers to the Arroyo Administration for making it a Monday! Yey to Holidays!
Andres Bonifacio, the face of the 5 peso coin, is a national hero of the Philippines. He initiated a secret society to make a revolution against Spain. Bonifacio day is celebrated on his Birthday.
Feast of the Immaculate Concepcion of Mary
As the Philippines is a Catholic country, we have a holiday during the Feast of Immaculate Concepcion of Mary, an obligatory Holy Day. Mama Mary’s Birthday is on September 8, and on December 8, she was conceived without sin. Before, this holiday was only at Catholic Schools and Institutions; now, it has become a holiday for the whole country.
Since Bonifacio day was celebrated during Bonifacio’s Birthday, many assumed that Rizal day was when Dr. Jose Rizal was born, so I’ve seen #HappyBirthdayRizal hashtags on the internet. But, it’s wrong! Rizal Day is when he was executed. So I hope hashtags would be #RestInPeace, Rizal. #PhilippineNationalHero
Sample Schedule for Philippines Holidays in 2021
If you want to file a leave, it’s better to do these near holidays and weekends to enjoy what people call “long-weekends.” You can check out the picture below and let it serve as a guide for you.
- Red – Regular Holidays
- Blue – Special Holidays
- Gray – Weekend (Saturday and Sunday)
- White – Workday
- Yellow – The day I suggest you file a leave
You can cross your fingers to be allowed by your boss to have 2 leaves (e.g., Thursday/Friday and Monday; if not, choose one!
Additional Tips for Workers during Philippines Holidays in 2021
- For Regular Holidays, you will be entitled to a whole day’s pay even if you don’t work. However, if you do, you will be given 200% plus overtime, which is more than the regular rate. In my previous company, many volunteers to work during this holiday as you get a good amount of money.
- For Special Holidays – monthly paid workers are paid for the day and have an additional 30% when you work. For example, your day rate is PHP 500 on that day; you will get PHP 650. Unlike Regular Holidays where you can get PHP 1,000. However, for daily paid workers, it’s a no-work no-pay day.
- There’s a much more complicated computation if the holiday is on your rest day, e.g., on a weekend. It pays a lot to work here. But, you can also enjoy your vacation!
- Please note your company’s rules; if you are absent before the holidays, you might not get paid if you don’t file a Paid Leave. Plus, you might get AWOL – absent without leave. So, for example, you were absent on Holy Wednesday without a “Paid Leave,” say goodbye to your wage for Holy Thursday and Black Friday.
- It’s better to file a leave a month or two before your scheduled absence; at least you got to be the first one granted the leave and have your teammates ready if you are absent.
- Please be a responsible worker. Don’t file a leave when your company or team is quite busy, or you have deadlines on that day. You can do so, though, if your responsibilities are done, but if not, don’t leave them hanging and having problems.
Tips when you travel on Holidays
- Reserve a ticket in advance or file a leave a day earlier if you leave during popular holidays like Holy Week, All Saints Day, or Christmas. Many people from the cities go home to their provinces during that time. There is usually a crowd during those times and many “fully-booked” transportation.
- Travel lightly, especially if you only travel for a few days
- Check your destination’s peak season as prices might get high or many hotels are fully booked.
That’s it! I hope we can use this list of Philippines Holidays in 2021 in good use this year. Let’s pray that all will be well these coming months, and we get the opportunity to travel. Check our itineraries, so you know where to go during your vacation.
About the Writer
Hey, I’m Lyza! I once was a person who just imagined going to places “one day” but decided to pursue my dreams. My first travel abroad was in Japan, solo, last 2018, and I fell in love with the experience. I aim to visit 10 countries before turning 30 and 2 new places in the Philippines every year. Besides traveling, I love organizing trips, taking pictures, reading, and making new friends. Follow my adventures through my Instagram.