Tuesday 7 December 2021

December 1 holiday moved to Monday, November 29

The holiday celebrates Costa Rica's abolition of its army in 1948

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QCOSTARICA – For the second time, Costa Rica will celebrate the “Day of the Abolition of the Army” with a holiday. In 2019, legislators eliminated the October 12 holiday, replacing it with December 1, the date that remembers the day that the Junta Fundadora de la Segunda República (Founding Board of the Second Republic) eliminated the army as a permanent institution, in 1948.

José María Figueres, Ferrer, on December 1, 1948, when with a hammer blow at the Bellavista Barracks, now the National Museum, he abolished the Army.

The December 1 celebration is a non-mandatory pay holiday.

This year, the holiday falls on a Wednesday, but due to the law approved by the Legislative Assembly to encourage tourism with long weekends, the holiday is brought forward to Monday, November 29.

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Upcoming holidays that move are:

  • September 15, 2022, to Monday, September 19
  • December 1, 2022, to Monday, December 5
  • April 11, 2023, to Monday, April 10
  • July 25, 2023, to Monday, July 24
  • August 15, 2023, to Monday, August 14
  • April 11, 2024, to Monday, April 15
  • July 25 2024 to Monday, July 29
  • August 15, 2024, to Monday, August 19

Law 9803, which created the holiday of December 1, specifies that “the following days will be considered holidays and, therefore, of mandatory payment:

  • January 1 – New Year’s Day
  • April 11 – Juan Santamaria Day
  • Holy Thursday and Friday – changes each year with Semana Santa
  • May 1 – Labor Day
  • July 25 – Guanacaste Day  – annexation of the Guanacaste province in 1824
  • August 15 – mother of all holidays, Mother’s Day
  • September 15 – Independence Day
  • December 25  – Christmas

Considered holidays, but their payment will not be mandatory:

  • August 2 – Día de la Virgen de los Ángeles
  • December 1

Non-mandatory paid holiday means that workers have the right to enjoy the holiday. Regarding payment, according to the Ministry of Labor, companies that pay weekly wages, by effective time, are not obliged to recognize the holiday if the employees do not work it and, in the event that a salaried employee works that day, they get their usual payment.

In the case of mandatory payment, an employee who works on that day will be paid a double salary for the day. According to the Ministry of Labor, an employee can refuse to work on a mandatory holiday without incurring sanctions.


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