Vietnamese will probably be denied a 10-day Lunar New Year break that they have been hoping for. But they can take consolation in the fact that there will be more long weekends than usual in 2017.
The Ministry of Home Affairs has issued a statement after reviewing proposals by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs last month regarding public holidays.
It agreed with the labor ministry’s suggestions to give the public three days off for the New Year holiday from December 31, 2016 to January 2, 2017; four days for Reunification Day and Labor Day from April 29 to May 2; and three days for Independence Day from September 2-4.
For the Hung Kings’ Festival, which commemorates the kings considered to be the founding fathers of Vietnam, the home affairs ministry favored the longer option of a four-day break that starts on Thursday, April 6 and will run through the weekend. Workers will have to make up for the Friday off on the Saturday of the week before or after. The other option was a single day on April 6, or the 10th day of the third lunar month.
But for the country’s most important holiday on the Lunar New Year, or Tet, the home affairs ministry went for a shorter option of seven days, from January 26 to February 1, instead of the proposed 10.
The labor ministry proposed the 10-day option last month and a survey by VnExpress found that 81 percent of the 16,500 respondents favored a long break. The seven-day break may be too short for many, especially after the nine-day holidays the country has enjoyed for Tet over the past five years.
The Prime Minister has the final decision. If he agrees with the home affairs ministry, which will likely be the case, Vietnam will have a total of 21 holidays in 2017, compared to 22 this year.
Vietnam's public holiday dates for 2017 if the Prime Minister signs off on the proposal by the Ministry of Home Affairs.