Bank holidays in the UK are a time to book off your annual leave, pack up your bags, and jet off for a mini break in Europe or head home to see loved ones.
However, after the turbulent last couple of years, thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic, taking a holiday of any kind has been difficult to plan for, as travel restrictions have been implemented at a moment’s notice, new Covid-19 variants pop up unexpectedly, and uncertainty about the pandemic lingers.
And while organising your bank holidays in 2022 might be at the bottom of your to-do list today, one poignant lesson the last two years has taught us is the importance of rest, relaxation and restoration.
Whether you're crossing your fingers for a sunny holiday or have had a UK coastal cottage bookmarked on your Instagram page for what feels like years, one thing that's a surety next year is the list of key UK bank holiday dates in 2022.
Better yet, next year you can enjoy 54 days of holiday by just taking 22 days of annual leave.
Here is everything you need to know about the bank holidays in 2022, from the dates to how to maximise your annual leave:
When is the May bank holiday 2022?
The May bank holiday in 2022 falls on Monday May 2.
May Day usually takes place on the first Monday in May to mark the start of spring. In 2020 however, the day was moved back to Friday May 8 to coincide with the 75th anniversary of VE Day.
In 2021 normal proceedings resumed and the UK celebrated the first May bank holiday (also known as the early May bank holiday) on Monday May 3.
Everyone also had the chance to celebrate a second bank holiday that month on Monday May 31.
Here is a list of all the UK bank holidays 2022:
New Year’s Day: Monday January 3 (substitute day)
New Year’s Day: Tuesday January 4 (substitute day, Scotland only)
St Patrick’s Day: Thursday March 17 (Northen Ireland only)
Good Friday: Friday April 15
Easter Monday: Monday April 18
Early May bank holiday: Monday May 2
Spring bank holiday: Thursday June 2
Platinum Jubilee Bank Holiday: Friday June 3
Battle of the Boyne: Tuesday July 12 (Northern Ireland only)
Summer Bank Holiday: Monday August 1 (Scotland only)
Summer Bank Holiday: Monday August 29
St Andrew’s Day: Wednesday November 30 (Scotland only)
Boxing Day: Monday December 26
Christmas Day (substitute day): Tuesday December 27
How to maximise your annual leave in 2022:
If your office usually closes on weekends and bank holidays, you could take a total of nine days off if you book four days of annual leave from Tuesday January 3 to Friday January 7.
In April, you can take another four days of annual leave (from Tuesday April 19 to Friday April 22) and have 10 days holiday.
A similar ‘trick’ can be played for the May bank holiday, by requesting Tuesday May 3 to Friday May 6 off work, leaving you with a total of nine days off by taking just four days of annual leave.
In May, request four days off from Monday May 30 to Wednesday June 1 in order to acquire nine days off.
In August, take four days of annual leave (from Tuesday August 30 until Friday September 2) to get nine days off, and in December request Wednesday December 28 until Friday December 30 to get eight days off.
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