Albertans Hard at Work over the Holiday

Many Albertans were working this holiday season to ensure the festive break was merry and bright.

Health-care workers, utility employees, clerks, restaurant and grocery staff, first responders and road crews were working to give Albertans an opportunity to make the most of their holiday.

“As you enjoy this holiday season, please take time to think about those who are working during this special time of year. These dedicated workers are spending time away from their families so that we can spend time with ours.”

Christina Gray, Minister of Labour


Alberta’s Employment Standards Code sets out rules for those working on a recognized general holiday, including basic eligibility for general holiday pay, as well as the entitlement to general holiday pay in certain circumstances.

Facts on general holidays and general holiday pay
  • Christmas Day and New Year’s Day are both recognized general holidays in Alberta. An employer may designate any other day as a holiday, such as Boxing Day, if they choose.
  • If an eligible employee works on a general holiday that falls on a regular work day for them, employers have the option to pay either regular pay plus 1.5 times the normal hourly rate, or provide regular pay plus a paid day off at a later time.
  • If an eligible employee normally works on the day that the general holiday falls upon, but doesn’t work that day, they are entitled to their average daily wage.
  • If the general holiday is not a normal work day for the employee, but they work it, they must be paid 1.5 times their normal hourly rate.
  • Employers are not required to provide an additional day off work to employees if the general holiday falls on a day that is not a normal work day, unless the employer chooses to.


To learn more about eligibility requirements for general holiday pay or Alberta’s Employment Standards Code, visit or call 1-877-427-3731.