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Ecuador decrees five-day New Year’s holiday but there’s a catch

The last holiday of 2019 will be the longest of the year, the government decreed on Friday. To boost tourism and post-Christmas commercial activity, the Ministry of Tourism announced that Monday, December 30 and Tuesday, December 31 will be added to the official January 1 New Year’s Day holiday.

Dummies, or monigotes, go up in flames on a Cuenca street during last year’s New Year’s Eve celebration.

“Including the prior weekend, this extension means a five-day holiday in which families can travel and participate in various festivities around the country,” the ministry said. “The president has given his blessing to the plan with Executive Decree 858, understanding the country’s need to recover from the October strike.”

The two extra days off come with a catch, however. Government employees will have to make up the days by working the following two Saturdays.

The extra holidays are optional for businesses but the ministry urged business owners to allow employees to participate in the long weekend.

Official Ecuador Holidays for 2020

New Year’s Day
Wednesday, January 1

Carnival
Monday 24 and Tuesday February 24 and 25

Good Friday
Friday, April 10

Labor Day
Friday, May 1, 2020

Battle of Pichincha
Sunday, May 24

Guayaquil Festival
Saturday, July 25

First Cry of Independence
Monday, August 10

Guayaquil’s independence
Friday, October 9

Day of the Dead
Saturday, November 2

Cuenca Independence
Tuesday, November 3

Christmas
Friday, December 25, 2020

11 thoughts on “Ecuador decrees five-day New Year’s holiday but there’s a catch

  1. Great! Just what schoolchildren need, another holiday to disrupt the little learning that takes place in the schools!

      1. I have taught in the public schools for 2 1/2 years now in Cuenca. Obviously, you have no concept of what the schedule is or what goes on in the public schools with constant festival interruptions that require a week of planning and little else gets done in terms of teaching. This and other interruptions forms the basis for the comment I made. As to the other comments below, I know from first-hand experience the situation of the public schools, which is probably much more than can be said of the ignorant comments being made to my post.

    1. How do you know the amount of learning going on in schools ? Its a stupid statement regardless, vacations are a good way to recharge your mind and body. Maybe you need one.

      1. We live next door to an elementary school that my nieces and nephews attend. They get plenty of vacation time – summer, spring, Christmas, and all the many other Ecuadorian holidays. School is in session only half a day. We’re close enough to hear what goes on during “class time”. There is a lot of recess and “cultural events” (parties), to prepare the young’uns for adult life in Ecuador. One might call this anecdotal evidence, but I doubt that it’s much different from other schools across the country.
        We did notice a change after Correa left office. Back then the teachers were required to stay in the afternoon to prepare for the next day. Now they leave at noon with the students. Maybe MysticalRose knows more than you think she does?

      2. How do I know? Because I’ve taught in these schools. Based on that, I agree with MysticalRose. What is your basis to disagree? Perhaps you need to re-evaluate your opinion after you inform that opinion with facts, not speculation of your own.

      3. And perhaps you need to volunteer for a year or more in several of the public schools on a daily basis so that you can form an intelligent comment, and not the ignorant reply you have made to my post.

  2. From what I can see, the groups that will benefit from this decree are teachers/professors, bank employees and maybe public utility employees. Govt. workers will make up for the time off on the weekends. Businesses can’t afford the loss of revenue and most won’t let their employees off even if “encouraged” to. It’s the same for the self-employed. Where are they going to get the money to go on vacation if they’re not working? Ya gotta love this country. There’s a laugh around every corner.

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