How to Mondayise Boxing Day, 2 January and Waitangi Day

Boxing Day is the first of three upcoming public holidays that are Mondayised, followed by the day after New Year’s Day and Waitangi Day. This means a day off on a Monday, not a Saturday, for many workers.

But don’t panic. You may already have done this for Anzac Day 2015, the first public holiday to be Mondayised.

It’s important that you keep track of leave and pay for your employees during holidays so everybody gets what they’re entitled to.

Public holiday dates:

  • Friday 25 December - Christmas Day
  • Saturday 26 December or Monday 28 December - Boxing Day
  • Friday 1 January - New Year's Day
  • Saturday 2 January or Monday 4 January - Day after New Year's Day
  • Saturday 6 February or Monday 8 February - Waitangi Day
Even if an employee has just been hired, they’re entitled to public holidays that fall on days they would usually work.

Even if an employee has just been hired, they’re entitled to public holidays that fall on days they would usually work.

Employees are entitled to a paid day off on a public holiday if it would otherwise be a working day for them. If you ask them to work, and they agree, you must pay them at least time and a half, and give them a paid day off at a later date.

If you're a business that operates on Saturdays and Mondays, your employees don't get both days as public holidays - they just get one. So, you treat Saturday as the public holiday, paying employees who work at least time and half with a paid day off at a later date. Treat Monday as a regular working day (no extra pay and no paid time off later).

Read more about how to handle alternative days off on

For staff who don't work weekends, the Monday after the Saturdays will be treated as their public holidays - so they won't have to work on Monday 28 December 2015, Monday 4 January 2016 and Monday 8 February 2016.

Some workers only work public holidays, eg someone who works at a racetrack for a Waitangi Day race. They must be paid time and a half. But they don't get an alternative day's holiday.

Case study

Alternate day off – or not

Rachel normally works Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays at a Gisborne café. She’s happy to work her regular days over Waitangi weekend, so her boss Sarah calculates what she’s entitled to for the public holiday. 

Because a worker is entitled to only one of the public holidays, Sarah notes on Rachel’s pay records that she worked Saturday, and was paid time and a half. She records on Rachel’s leave file that she’s entitled to a day off at a later date.

 Rachel plans to take her day off in March, with Sarah’s agreement. Rachel’s 8 February shift is treated like a regular Monday, so she doesn’t get any extra pay or a day off.

Joe also works at the café, usually Monday to Friday. He is entitled to a paid day off, and confirms he’ll take Monday off as he wants to go to a family get-together. He gets his normal pay for Monday. Sarah calls up Jeremy who works for her on a casual basis to see if he can cover Joe’s shift on 8 February. He says he can, and is paid time and a half. He doesn’t get an alternative day off though.

Many businesses have an annual closedown over the Christmas period, when staff must take time off even if they don't have any annual leave. For more detail on how to handle this, see our Holiday pay and entitlements article.

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