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Why this could be the longest weekend you might ever have in Germany

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Why this could be the longest weekend you might ever have in Germany
A Brückentag (bridge day) usually lands on a Friday or a Monday. Photo: DPA.
12:17 CEST+02:00
For millions of people across Germany, this Friday marks the beginning of what may very well be one of the longest weekends in their lives.

On Tuesday, which is Reformation Day (October 31st), everyone across the country has the day off. But this isn't often the case.

Usually Reformation Day is only celebrated in the five states of former East Germany with predominantly Protestant populations, but this year is unique.

October 31st 2017 marks the 500th anniversary of religious reformation in Europe, commemorating when Martin Luther nailed his 95 proposals on to the door of a church in 1517.

On Wednesday, the day after Reformation Day, more than half of the population will have the day off as well. This is because November 1st is All Saints’ Day, and for those who live in Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saarland and Rhineland-Palatinate, All Saints’ Day is a public holiday.

Those who have been smart and planned ahead - knowing that the upcoming public holidays land on a Tuesday and Wednesday - may have opted to book a vacation day on Monday (October 30th).

Germans like to call the piece of luck when a public holiday falls on a Tuesday or a Thursday a Brückentag (bridge day).

This means that if you decided to take the Brückentag off on Monday, as well as live in a state where All Saints’ Day (Wednesday) is recognized as a public holiday, you get a whopping five day break including the weekend.

Cherish it, because there are no potential bridge days in December.

There’s one more reason why this could be the longest weekend you might ever have, and that has to do with the clocks being set back one hour.

Early in the morning on Sunday, during the switch from summer time to winter time, we all gain an extra hour. If you have the next few days off after that, consider yourself lucky because the chances of a long weekend like this coming up again in Germany are slim. 

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