Mexico holidays and months explained

So maybe you’re one of us working folks here in Mexico that needs to schedule a day to the beach since your job dictates the time you have available for such things. Not to worry, however, since Mexico has a lot of nationally recognized holidays.

Instead of a just a calendar this year, I thought it would be nice to have a more descriptive list of the Mexican holidays. While this list of holidays stands, they fall on different days of each year, of course, and should be planned for accordingly.

JANUARY

By law, New Year’s Day, January 1 is not a working day in Mexico so you can enjoy sleeping in.

FEBRUARY

The first Monday is the recognized date, but this year Monday, February 5 is official rest day since it is Constitution Day and is a recognized national holiday. Mexican Constitution Day celebrates the ratification of the Constitution of 1917, adopted after the Mexican Revolution.

MARCH

The third Monday in March is the birthday of Benito Juárez. This national holiday is celebrated in Mexico on the third Monday in March, as enshrined in Article 74 of the Mexican labour law. This public holiday celebrates the Birthday of Benito Juárez, a 19th century president and statesman who stood against the French intervention in Mexico.

Although they are not official, some employers give rest on Thursday and Friday of Holy Week which is called Maudy Thursday. In 2018, those days will be March 29 and 30, respectively. Also known as Holy Thursday or Good Thursday, Maundy Thursday has been celebrated since the earliest days of the Christian Church. Maundy Thursday takes place on the day before Good Friday.

Maundy Thursday commemorates Jesus’ last supper with his disciples and established the ceremony known as the Eucharist. In Spain, it is generally a public holiday in all regions apart from Catalonia.

In addition, the public school board indicates in its calendar break for students from March 26 to 30 March this year. Good to know for parents who want to plan a getaway.

March 30 is Good Friday and is an official day off. Many countries observe Good Friday as a national holiday on the Friday before Easter. The day commemorates the Crucifixion of Jesus. Some countries observe the Orthodox calendar in which Good Friday may occur on a different date.

APRIL

Students will continue on vacation the first week of this month and will return to school  April 9. If you are a worker, sorry but this month you have no official holiday.

MAY

On May 1, May Day or Labor Day is celebrated and is commonly associated as a commemoration of the achievements of the labour movement. The holiday may also be known as Labour Day or International Worker’s Day and is marked with a public holiday in over 80 countries.

The 1 May date is used because in 1884 the American Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions demanded an eight-hour workday, to come in effect as of 1 May 1886. This resulted in the general strike and the Haymarket Riot of 1886, but eventually also in the official sanction of the eight-hour workday.

Cinco de Mayo or May 5 is not celebrated in Mexico the way it is celebrated in the United States and is only recognized in the state of Puebla.

Mother’s Day is May 10 in Mexico and is not a day off, but is a recognized day to buy flowers and small gifts for mothers.

JUNE 

June 17 is Father’s Day in Mexico and too, is not a public holiday but is a recognized day to buy gifts for fathers.

JULY

If you are a worker, forget about having an official day off this month. It is a full work month for everyone. However, the school year ends on Monday, July 9  holidays or summer vacation begin on Tuesday 10.

AUGUST

Pity, but in this month there are no breaks for workers or students. And the school system has yet to confirm when students will return to classes.

SEPTEMBER

September 16 is Independence Day in Mexico and this year, will fall on Sunday, so officially there will be no rest for the patriotic celebrations.

This public holiday is the national day of Mexico and is celebrated on 16 September. Also known as ‘Día de la Independencia’ or ‘Grito de Dolores’, it marks the anniversary of the Mexican War of Independence against Spain on 16 September 1810.

OCTOBER

Everyone has a full work calendar as well as a full schedule of classes if you are a student.

NOVEMBER

There are a few holidays starting October 31 to November 2, which is Day of the Dead in Mexico. While families recognize the days, they are not official holidays. Known as El Día de los Muertos this unofficial but widely observed holiday is celebrated on 2 November each year.

On 1 November (All Saints Day) and 2 November (All Souls’ Day), the ancient indigenous people of Mexico believe that the souls of the dead return each year to visit with their living relatives – to eat, drink and be merry. Just like they did when they were living, so grave sites are filled with people, food and flowers over the three days.

Monday 19 will be official rest day for workers and students for the anniversary of the Mexican Revolution that is celebrated on November 20, although the labor law states that the holiday is the third Monday in November. This holiday celebrates the beginning of the Mexican Revolution in 1910 and is observed on the third Monday of November.

DECEMBER

Each December 12 marks Virgin of Guadalupe Day. This national holiday marks the appearance of the Virgin Mary to a young indigenous man on 12 December 1531.

On this day people from all parts of Mexico make their way to Mexico’s chief religious center at the Basilica of the Virgen of Guadalupe, located in Villa de Guadalupe Hidalgo, a northern neighbourhood of Mexico City. There, they will celebrate the Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe (Our Lady of Guadalupe) with a mass ceremony and a traditional fair in her honor. Mary became the patron saint of Mexico in 1746 and the Dia de la Virgen de Guadalupe became an national holiday in 1859.

On December 25, when we celebrate Christmas, it is also a rest day, and in 2018 it will fall on a Tuesday.