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Norway Explained For Members

How to maximise Norway's public holidays in 2024 – five essential tricks

Robin-Ivan Capar
Robin-Ivan Capar - [email protected]
How to maximise Norway's public holidays in 2024 – five essential tricks
Your ability to capitalise on time off in Norway can hinge significantly on the calendar's quirks. Don't just roll with it - plan ahead of time. Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

Master these hacks to stretch your annual leave and savour Norway's public holidays for longer.

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Full-time employees in Norway have a lot to look forward to when it comes to annual leave, and that's before they factor in the country's public holidays.

If you fall into this category, you are generally entitled to at least four weeks plus one day of holiday every year, and those aged 60 or over are entitled to an extra week, as stated on the Altinn website.

On top of that, many employers go the extra mile by offering additional days and perks - it's common for a lot of companies to have a five-week arrangement in place.

Moreover, most workers enjoy the privilege of taking a month-long summer vacation, typically from June to August.

Beyond the realm of paid vacation days, Norway boasts a roster of designated public holidays.

READ MORE: 'Feriepenger': What you need to know about holiday pay in Norway

The secret to extended breaks lies in strategically planning your time off around these holidays, sparing your precious vacation days for other adventures.

In this guide, we've compiled a collection of tips and insights to help you make the most of your annual leave in Norway.

Inneklemte dager

First on the list is a much-beloved workplace institution of sorts.

Norwegians are big fans of inneklemte dager, roughly translated as "squeezed days" and used to designate "working days squeezed between holidays."

There is even a website that follows and calculates all such days in the year: inneklemtedager.no

If you really want to make the most out of your leave, you'll often need to see whether you can take a day off on one of these inneklemte days, which will allow you to get a nice chunk of time off while only expending one day of annual leave.

In 2024, you can count on eight inneklemte days: April 29th (Monday) and 30th (Tuesday), May 2nd (Thursday), 3rd (Friday), and 10th (Friday), as well as December 23rd (Monday), 24th (Tuesday), and 27th (Friday).

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Familiarise yourself with your company's leave and holiday policies

Different Norwegian companies may take varied approaches to annual leave close to public holidays.

While some employers may offer enticing "half days" as a prelude to public holidays, others might request employees to use their annual leave in the days immediately before or after a public holiday to synchronise work schedules.

The workdays between public holidays, the inneklemte dager, might be offered as additional vacation days by some Norwegian employers (make sure to check!).

Remember that it's always a good idea to engage in an open discussion with your employer regarding your vacation preferences so that both parties have time to schedule the leave.

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Plan ahead

Norwegians are well-known for their meticulous planning tendencies. Therefore, it's advisable to start your holiday planning well in advance.

While planning your summer getaway in the winter might strike you as unconventional, it significantly heightens your chances of securing your preferred dates - especially during peak periods like public holidays or school vacations.

Accommodations, flights, and train seats tend to vanish swiftly, accompanied by price hikes as the holiday season looms nearer.

Also, note that your boss must approve your days off.

Planning ahead shows consideration to both your colleagues and your boss, as they'll be able to adjust work schedules accordingly and take into account your time off early on.

READ ALSO: Full list of Norway's public holidays in 2024

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Self-care – the importance of a real break

Don't lose sight of the primary purpose of your annual leave: taking a real break and recharging your inner batteries.

While the summer is a favoured time for Norwegians to escape the cities and go off on family retreats, it's also the time when numerous eateries, cafes, and museums temporarily shutter their doors.

Keep in mind that cities may become somewhat empty and adopt an eerie stillness during holiday periods (much like on sunny days, when you feel that everyone has escaped to the outdoors to enjoy the nice weather), making it an ideal moment to take a well-deserved breather.

Mind the school calendar

For those with school-age kids, it's essential to remain informed about the start and other key dates of their school terms - a calendar that can vary across different regions of Norway.

Even if you don't have children, familiarising yourself with the timings of school holidays, such as the seasonal school breaks (vinterferie and høstferie), can help in holiday planning, allowing you to evade peak travel times and surging prices.

If your children are enrolled in kindergarten or primary school, it's also essential to know the school's scheduled planleggingsdager or "planning days."

During these, parents have the legal right to take time off work to care for their children since the school is closed.

However, it's crucial to inform your supervisors as early as possible, and typically, it is treated as a day of personal leave.

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