This is being written on Monday, July 9, 2018.  It’s the Monday after July 4th (American Independence Day).

It seems like a good time to review what happens – or doesn’t happen – on holiday weeks in America.

First for most holidays America does not shut down. Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter are probably the closest when most business and retail establishments close for the day. Gas stations and some fast food are still open, however.

Thanksgiving used to be a firm day off in the US for everyone in retail, but more and more retailers are opening earlier and earlier. It’s rare to see businesses open on Christmas or Easter – but some are (like Chinese Food and Movie theaters).

For other businesses – those with offices and warehouses most are closed for holidays.

Many holidays in the US are “moved” by law and tradition to be celebrated on a Monday or Friday (holidays like President’s Day, Martin Luther King Day and Columbus Day).

Other holidays are celebrated on the actual day (like Christmas, New Years and July 4th).

Businesses have an easy job of what to do when an actual day holiday falls on a Monday or Friday – just close for the day.

If the holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday the businesses will typically close on Monday or Friday – but it can be tricky to see what other businesses will do and you want to guess right so you aren’t closed when your customers and vendors are open – or vice versa.

When the holiday is on a Tuesday or Thursday often businesses give employees a four day weekend (adding in a Monday or Friday off, as appropriate).

When the holiday falls on a Wednesday things get tricky.  And that’s what happened last week with a July 4th on a Wednesday.  It looks like most businesses just gave employees a single day off.

So it’s not easy planning holidays in the US.  You want to protect your revenue stream by serving customers – but you also don’t want to anger your employees.

US holidays are just one of the topics we cover in the Doing Business in the US Course.  You should sign-up today.

The Our Shawn

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