List of Singapore Public Holidays 2024

Singapore Public Holiday

Singapore is a cosmopolitan country that celebrates a diverse variety of cultural and religious festivals. Its multicultural population comprises Chinese, Malays, Indians, Eurasians and foreigners who have made the island their home. As a secular nation, Singapore officially recognizes eleven public holidays covering major festivals that reflect the diversity of its people.

The public holidays for 2024 cover popular celebrations of the various ethnic groups living harmoniously in Singapore. These national holidays span cultural events like the Chinese New Year and religious observations like Hari Raya Puasa and Deepavali. They signify important days in respective customs and faiths.

As we prepare to usher in 2024, here’s a look at the eleven official public holidays lined up and how they will be celebrated across the sunny island state.

1)New Year’s Day: Monday, January 1st

New Year's Day Singapore

New Year’s Day on January 1st, 2024, will be the first public holiday of the year in Singapore. As January 1 falls on a Monday, it will be a one-day holiday for the New Year celebration. People can enjoy a three-day long weekend to bring in the year 2024. The day is celebrated by different ethnic groups according to their cultural traditions.

The Chinese celebrate by feasting with family, the Malays visit relatives and friends, and the Indians decorate their homes with kolams/rangoli. Major tourist attractions like Marina Bay, Sentosa, and Universal Studios organize New Year countdown parties. There are also community fireworks and concerts in different neighborhoods.

2)Chinese New Year: February 10th and 11th

Chinese New Year Singapore

Day 1: Saturday, February 10th
Day 2: Sunday, February 11th (Monday, February 12th is a substitute holiday)

In 2024, Chinese New Year falls on February 10th, Saturday, marking the start of the Year of Dragon. The celebrations will last for 15 days till Chap Goh Mei on February 24. Chinese New Year is the most important annual festival celebrated by the Chinese community in multi-racial Singapore. Markets and shopping centers start filling with festive goodies weeks before the festival. Homes are spring-cleaned and decorated with red lanterns and auspicious Chinese characters.

Reunion dinners on New Year’s Eve are a big affair – with families gathering to eat and exchange red packets. Lion dances, concerts and fireworks light up the evening. The first-day celebrations center around visiting relatives and friends. Workers in Singapore will enjoy a two-day holiday – with the substitute holiday for Chinese New Year falling on a Saturday. Attractions like Chinatown, temples and museums organize festive programs during this period.

3)Good Friday: Friday, March 29th

Good Friday falls on March 29. 2024, commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. The public holiday marks a solemn affair for the Christian community in Singapore. While not an elaborate festival, services are held in churches across the island on this day. Some churches organize large-scale re-enactments of the crucifixion procession of Jesus Christ.

Most devotees observe fasting as it signifies Christ’s suffering on the cross. Some also refrain from eating meat on this holy day. It signifies a day of mourning for Christians with public entertainment options being limited. Most eateries and businesses run as usual over the long weekend. Sentosa Resort may see more local tourists over the three-day holiday spanning Good Friday to Easter Sunday.

4)Hari Raya Puasa: Wednesday, April 10th

Hari Raya Puasa Singapore

Image Credit: todayonline.com/

Hari Raya Puasa marks the end of Ramadan – a month of dawn-to-dusk-fasting for Muslims. As one of the biggest festivals celebrated by ethnic Malays in Singapore, the festivities span for a month, starting from the sighting of the crescent moon. Markets see brisk trade for buying new clothes, savory treats and decorations for this festival.

The celebrations end on Hari Raya Puasa , which will fall on April 10, 2024. The day begins with morning prayers in mosques and Muslim homes across the island. This is followed by visiting relatives and friends to seek forgiveness and reconciliation – a practice known as Maaf Zahir dan Batin. Delicacies like ketupat, rendang and cookies are served for guests, along with the famed Hari Raya green pineapple tarts. Kids receive green packets filled with money from elders. The festive public holiday spirit can be observed in the Geylang Serai precinct,  dazzlingly lit throughout the month.

5)Labour Day: Wednesday, May 1st

Labour Day Singapore

International Labour Day, or May Day, on May 1 pays tribute to the working community around the world. In Singapore, the government recognizes the contributions of the working class to the nation-building by declaring it a public holiday. Major trade unions in Singapore organize celebrations with family carnivals, movie screenings and gala dinners for workers. Large congregations and speeches are conducted by the National Trade Union Congress.

Award ceremonies like model partnership awards take place to honor exemplary employers and employees. Some companies take the opportunity to organize corporate team-building activities for employees. For most, it is a holiday well spent at home with family or exploring the island’s vibrant culture. Sentosa island also introduces promotions to attract local tourists over this holiday period.

6)Vesak Day: Wednesday, May 22nd

Vesak Day Singapore

Vesak Day commemorates Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death. It falls mostly in May. In 2024, Vesak Day celebrations will occur on Wednesday, May 22nd. Devout Buddhists across Singapore visit temples that are elaborately decorated with flowers and lights. Chants and offerings of candles, joss sticks and lotus-shaped candles fill the temples on this holy day. Non-vegetarian food is avoided as Lord Buddha emphasized compassion towards all living beings.

Re-enactments of Buddha’s birth and his attainment of enlightenment are staged in temples like the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. Cultural performances and processions bring the community together to mark this spiritually significant day. Temple hopping and enjoying vegetarian delicacies are the major highlights of the day.

7)Hari Raya Haji: Monday, June 17th

Eid Al Adha Singapore

Image Credit: shopee.sg/

Hari Raya Haji, or Eid-al Adha Festival, is celebrated on the tenth day of Dhul Hijjah – the final month of the Islamic calendar. In 2024, the public holiday falls on Monday, June 17th in Singapore. On the day of the ‘Feast of Sacrifice’, people honor the willingness of Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son Ishmael as an act of obedience to God’s command. Though largely a religious solemnization for Muslims, the festival also embraces community and family bonding for many in Singapore. One of the core practices on this day is sacrificing livestock like goats and cows.

The meat is then distributed to the needy,   family, friends and neighbors regardless of race and religion. Special congregation prayers are conducted in the mosques and large open spaces. Some mosques also host bazaars featuring local handicrafts and religious articles. Families take this opportunity to share traditional cuisine and new clothes.

8)National Day: Friday, August 9th

Marking Singapore’s independence from Malaysia in 1965, the National Day is held on August 9 every year. As 2024 marks Singapore’s 59th year of independence, celebrations span over a period of several days across the island state. One of the highlights is the National Day Parade, featuring vibrant performances, military parade and a spectacular fireworks display. Catch it live on the floating platform or on television with family and friends.

Heartland towns also design colorful street decorations, concerts, carnivals and countdown parties leading to the National Day. This public holiday offers the opportunity for Singaporeans to bond at community events and reflect on the nation’s growth over the years in harmony and unity. To feel the patriotic festivities, join the joyful crowds at Marina Bay or any neighborhood celebration spot adorned with national flags and banners.

9)Deepavali: Thursday, October 31st

Deepavali Celebration

Deepavali, which means ‘rows of lighted lamps’, takes place in autumn every year. Celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains, this festival signifies the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil. In 2024, the Deepavali celebration in Singapore will fall on October 31, Thursday. Little India is dazzlingly decorated with colorful lights and flower garlands to mark the festive mood. Indians dress up in their traditional attire to offer prayers in temples and visit family and friends.

Delicacies like murukku, ladoo and thosai are prepared for guests and exchanged between families. Adults give red packets containing money to children while wishes of prosperity are shared. Cultural song and dance performances are also hosted by community organizations. Locals and tourists flock to Little India district to soak in the festive sights, sounds and bustling energy amid this bright celebration of light.

10)Christmas Day: Wednesday, December 25th

Christmas

Christmas celebrations in Singapore take place on December 25th every year as families gather to mark the birth of Jesus Christ. The 2024 holiday will fall on a Wednesday. Leading up to the big day, major shopping belts like Orchard Road dazzle with Christmas lights and decorations to attract shoppers.

While locals embrace international celebrations like flashy thematic displays, live concerts, feasts and gift exchanges, a religious prayer is also held on Christmas morning across churches in Singapore. Santa appearances, Christmas markets and entertaining events at tourist spots like Gardens by the Bay are also looked forward to during this festive period. On Christmas day, many locals gather with family and friends for sumptuous dinners and gift exchanges while taking advantage of promotions from eateries and attractions.



Frequently Asked Questions

When are the public holidays in Singapore in 2024?

Eleven official public holidays that will be observed in Singapore in 2024:

  1. New Year’s Day (Monday, January 1)
  2. Chinese New Year (Saturday, February 10 and Sunday, February 11)
  3. Good Friday (Friday, March 29)
  4. Labour Day (Wednesday, May 1)
  5. Vesak Day (Wednesday, May 22)
  6. Hari Raya Puasa (Wednesday, April 10)
  7. Hari Raya Haji (Monday, June 17)
  8. National Day​ (Friday, August 9)
  9. Deepavali (Thursday, October 31)
  10. Christmas Day (Wednesday, December 25)
  11. Substitute Public Holiday for Chinese New Year (Monday, February 12)

What are the popular festivals celebrated as public holidays in Singapore?

The major public holidays like Chinese New Year, Hari Raya Puasa, Deepavali and Christmas reflect the main festivals celebrated by Singapore’s prominent ethnic groups – Chinese, Malays, Indians and Eurasians. These festivals have a cultural or religious significance commemorating important days or events as per their respective customs. Locals enthusiastically celebrate them to connect with family, identity and faith.

How many long weekends will there be in 2024?

There will be nine long weekends in 2024 –spanning from Friday to Sunday. Therefore, locals can enjoy extended breaks on these weekends:

  1. Dec 31, 2023, to Jan 1
  2. Feb 10 to Feb 12
  3. Mar 29 to Mar 31
  4. Apr 29 to May 1
  5. May 18 to May 22
  6. Oct 26 to Oct 31
  7. Dec 21 to Dec 25
  8. Dec 28 to Jan 1, 2025

This allows for travel and staycation plans to explore Singapore or other regions.

What are the major attractions to visit during the public holidays?

The festive vibe sweeps through major attractions and neighborhoods, offering special events and decorations. Some top picks are:

  • Chinese New Year – Chinatown, Temple Street Market
  • Hari Raya Puasa – Geylang Serai Market
  • Vesak Day – Buddhist temples like the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple
  • Deepavali – Little India
  • Christmas – Orchard Road, Gardens by the Bay

Are schools and offices closed on public holidays in Singapore?

Yes, schools and many offices remain closed on gazetted public holidays in Singapore. Banks and the Singapore stock market also remain shut. While many companies operate, employee attendance is not compulsory on these national holidays. However, with heightened economic activity around festive holidays, sectors like retail, food & beverage and tourism continue operations.

Should tourists avoid Singapore during major public holidays?

No, it is highly recommended for tourists to plan their Singapore visit around one of these holidays to soak in the vibrant festive atmosphere across the island. It presents opportunities to immerse in Singapore’s multiculturalism through unique celebration experiences – be it lighting lanterns during the Mid-Autumn Festival or catching Thaipusam processions. Advance booking of flights and hotels is advisable, though, due to peak inbound travel.

Tips on How to Plan the Perfect Vacation in Singapore

Planning for  the dream getaway in Singapore requires strategic preparation. Follow these handy tips on crafting a seamless holiday that matches interests within the budget.

●       Know Your Priorities

Determine the non-negotiable experiences like adventure, relaxation, culture or cuisine that should shape your holiday first. This also helps narrow down suitable destinations and itinerary planning aligned with your motivation. Personalize experiences for the best holiday satisfaction.

●       Set a Realistic Budget

Decide on an affordable budget accounting for flights, accommodation, food, activities, shopping and insurance even before choosing a destination. Be real about what you can spend on your holiday rather than overstretching finances. Compromising on key experiences due to money constraints can ruin your much-awaited vacation.

●       Research Exhaustively

Embark on extensive online research across travel blogs, destination sites and community forums for your shortlisted places. Compile all details on weather, peak seasons, customs, visa requirements, top attractions and model itineraries before locking one. This equips you with realistic destination expectations.

●       Book Strategically

Make your flight and hotel reservations under cancellation or flexible policies as the early booking window opens for the best rates. Use travel loyalty points you’ve saved up to offset costs. Consider affordable alternatives like homestays, capsule hotels and low-cost carrier options where possible.

●       Draft an Activity Schedule

Pen down your preferred activities for each day, but keep buffer days in between for casual exploration or addressing contingencies. Mix high-energy adventures with laidback experiences for a wholesome itinerary. Scheduling minimizes the risk of missing out on popular sights over lack of time.

●       Pack Smartly

Prepare a checklist of essential clothing, footwear, toiletries and gear needed specifically for your holiday. Pack light and multi-purpose items that can be mixed and matched to maximize usage while reducing luggage load. Check baggage allowance to avoid penalties. Certain trips may need packing aids like compression bags.

●       Get Appropriate Insurance

Don’t neglect insurance – it is designed to financially protect travelers in case of unforeseen incidents. Compare plans that specifically cover emergencies like trip cancellations, loss of belongings, injuries, accidents, and natural calamities among other risks during overseas travel before purchasing one.

●       Inform Key Contacts

Share your detailed itinerary with close family and workplace in case they need to contact you while you’re on holiday. Provide them with information on the cities, hotels and trip duration. Keep digital and paper copies of important documents on yourself while travelling.

By planning thoughtfully using these tips, packing surprises can be minimized on your vacation for a truly enjoyable and memorable experience.

Final Words

The eleven public holidays slated for Singapore in 2024 reflect an ethnically diverse mix of cultural and religious observations. These national dates commemorate events integral to the Chinese, Malay, Indian and Eurasian communities that blend the Singaporean identity. Festivities aligned to these holidays will inject the calendar with enthusiastic and bright celebrations happening at various times of the year. From the Chinese communities ushering in the Year of the Dragon during Chinese New Year to the lighting of clay lamps amid Little India’s Deepavali festivities, locals immerse themselves in proud cultural celebrations with friends and families.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *