Minimum Paid Annual Leave in Europe

How many minimum paid days off do people in Europe get?

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Map of the minimum paid annual leave in Europe.

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The amount of paid leave one gets in Europe still varies quite a bit, according to data from the OECD. Of course, it really depends on your profession, your employer, age and time spend with your employer, but every country has a minimum of paid leave set by the government. The paid leave on this map is made up of the public holidays plus the statutory minimum. The minimum annual leave on this map is that for a full-time, full-year private sector employee, working a five-day week, who has been working for their current employer for one year.

For public holidays, those that permanently fall on a non-working day, are excluded. In some countries there’s even a regional variation in the number of public holidays. If that’s the case (like in Germany), you’ll see I’ve put a range of numbers instead of one number.

The lowest number of paid annual leave, can be found in Turkey. With only 26 days, it’s much lower than other European countries. Ireland, the Netherlands and Switzerland are the only other countries with less than 30 days of minimum paid annual leave.

There doesn’t seem to be a very strong geographical pattern on this map. The Nordic countries all have a fairly high number of minimum paid annual leave (36), but Norway has a much lower number (31). The highest numbers can be found much further south in Austria and Malta, where people get a minimum of 38 paid days off per year.


    1. Thanks for the feedback, Matthew. It’s nice to see someone correct me and actually back it up with a source.
      The OECD cites the UK as having a statutory leave of 28 days, which is in line with what your source mentions. However, the OECD has included 8 public holidays on top of those 28 days. Sounds like those 8 days of public holidays are actually optional for the employer to include.


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