Folks, 2022 hath arrived and if you haven’t spent all your annual leave days over the 2021 Christmas break it’s time to start planning for your next holiday.
It may still feel like we’re in travel limbo right now, but after nearly two years of being homebound, a lot of us have a few annual leave days stored in the bank. So, when is the best time to use them? (Even if it’s just for a little staycation, or road trip.)
Here’s a breakdown of the 2022 public holiday dates and how you can combine them with annual leave days for some epic breaks.
Australian public holidays in 2022
- Saturday, January 1 (New Year’s Day)
- Monday, January 3 (New Year’s Day in lieu)
- Wednesday, January 26 (Australia Day)
Now that Christmas and New Year have passed the next break we all have to look forward to is a public holiday at the end of January.
The Australia Day holiday falls in the middle of the week in 2022, which means taking two days on either side will give you a nice five-day break later in the month. It’s the last stint of time most of us will get before Easter so be sure to take advantage.
- Monday, March 7 (Labour Day, WA only)
- Monday, March 14 (Canberra Day, ACT only)
- Monday, March 14 (Adelaide Cup Day, SA only)
- Monday, March 14 (Eight Hours Day, Tas. only)
- Monday, March 14 (Labour Day, VIC only)
March brings a long weekend to those in WA, ACT, SA, Tas. and Vic., so if you’re in one of those states take the Friday before off for an extra-long weekend.
- Friday, April 15 (Good Friday)
- Monday, April 18 (Easter Monday)
- Monday, April 25 (Anzac Day)
Easter is falling late in 2022 and will take place in mid-April. Because it falls so close to Anzac Day, if you play your cards right you could score a seriously long break here.
By taking April 19-22 off you can turn four days of annual leave into an 11-day break that takes advantage of the Easter and Anzac Day long weekends.
Quarter-year holiday? I think so.
- Monday, May 2 (May Day in NT, Labour Day in QLD)
- Monday, May 30 (Reconciliation Day, ACT)
Only the Northern Territory, Queensland and ACT get public holidays in May, but if you’re itching for some time off, why not take the four days after the Monday holiday as annual leave and get a nine-day break.
Alternatively, you could take advantage of the Easter and May public holidays by taking four days off in both the week of Easter Monday and the week of Anzac Day, which would score you 18 days off for only 8 days of annual leave.
- Monday, June 6 (Western Australia Day, WA only)
- Monday, June 13 (Queen’s Birthday, excl. WA and QLD)
In June, we traditionally celebrate the Queen’s birthday, although WA and QLD take this holiday at different times
For those with the June public holiday, take an extra day on the Friday for a nice four-day weekend or take four days for another nine-day break.
- Monday, August 1 (Picnic Day, NT only)
- Wednesday, August 10 (Royal Queensland Show Day, Brisbane only)
Those in the Brisbane area can take advantage of the mid-week Queensland Show holiday by taking two days on either side of the Wednesday as leave, which equals a five-day weekend.
- Monday, September 26 (Queen’s Birthday, WA Only)
- TBC – AFL Grand Final Holiday (Vic. only)
September is a weird one, but some areas in Western Australia will get a long weekend for the Queen’s birthday.
Victoria also typically gets the AFL Grand Final holiday in September, but this is dependant on the game schedule. When it does take place, it will usually be on the Friday prior to the sporting event.
- Monday, October 3 (Labour Day, ACT, NSW, SA only)
- Monday, October 3 (Queen’s Birthday, Qld only)
It’s a long stretch of work between June and Christmas, so folks needing a break should take advantage of the October public holiday. Qld takes it as the Queen’s birthday while ACT, NSW and SA celebrate Labour Day.
As per usual, combining four days of annual leave with the public holiday will grant you a nine-day break, so take it if you need some R&R.
- Tuesday, November 1 (Melbourne Cup, Vic. only)
Victoria is the only lucky one with a public holiday in November. The Melbourne Cup takes place on a Tuesday, so it seems only logical to take Monday as annual leave and enjoy a four-day weekend.
- Sunday, December 25 (Chrismas Day)
- Monday, December 26 (Boxing Day)
- Tuesday, December 27 (Christmas Day in lieu)
- Monday, January 2, 2023 (New Year’s Day in lieu)
Now we get to the good stuff: Christmas break.
In 2022, Christmas Day falls on a Sunday, meaning we’ll get Monday and Tuesday as public holidays in the week between Christmas and New Year.
If you take December 28-30 off as annual leave, you’ll get a 10-day break from just three days of leave. What a gift!
There you have it – all the ways you can pair your annual leave with Australian public holiday dates for extra time off in 2022. Make the most of it!
This article has been updated with additional information.