Here is a list of 2021’s Public holidays in South Korea which are often know as Red Days, National Holidays or for most people simply days off work.

It’s bad news this year as well as six holidays fall on weekends, and currently none have replacement holidays scheduled. So therefore this year there are just nine (weekday) national/public holidays for us to enjoy. There are also just three days (Chuseok) in the final six and a half months of the year :(.

Here Are The Dates For Your 2021 Diary’s

Friday January 1st – New Years Day (신정)

Thursday, Friday & Saturday February 11th, 12th & 13ths Korean Lunar New Year or Seollal (설날)

Monday March 1st – Independence Movement Day (3.1절)

Wednesday May 5thChildren’s Day (어린이날)

Wednesday May 19thBuddha’s Birthday (석가탄신일)

Sunday June 6thMemorial Day (현충일)

Sunday August 15thLiberation Day (광복절)

Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday September 20th, 21st & 22ndChuseok (추석) also known as Korean Thanksgiving or Harvest Festival

Sunday October 3rdNational Foundation Day (개천절)

Saturday October 9thHangul Day (한글날)

Saturday December 25th – Christmas Day (크리스마스)

Sadly if a public holiday falls on a weekend it is NOT carried over onto the next workday, although some public schools and generous employers do give them. Replacement Holiday Days are sometimes given, but it depends on the general number of holidays and requires government approval.

Often people are asked to work during on a public holiday and then take a day off at another time, this is really uncommon but perfectly legal (although not nice). Public Holidays are a requirement for government and public buildings, however private businesses are not bound to follow or observe them.

Be warned that traveling the day before, on or the after day after a public holiday can be very busy and traffic jams fully booked buses, trains and even planes are common. Therefore book in advance to avoid disappointment. One positive is that most shops, stores, restaurants, bars etc are generally open on public holidays in Korea and buses and subways operate on a similar schedule to a Sunday (although as already stated they can be very busy).

Other Key Days in 2020

Will be added here if/when needed.


2021 is the Year of the Ox (or Cow).

If you have any questions about public holidays / National Holidays / Red Days here in South Korea please feel free to let us know, have a great year in South Korea.

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