Remember what St. Patrick’s Day celebrations were like pre-2020? It may seem like a while back now, but I’m sure they’re still pretty fresh in the memory for most.
Sadly, we haven’t had much Paddy’s Day luck in the last two years — with March 2020 marking the very beginning of the Covid-19 wave across Europe, and 2021 not being much better spent under restrictions.
But, it looks like that’s about to change… and then some. As a thank you for the sacrifices made by the public during the pandemic, Ireland are planning a four-day Paddy’s Day celebration for 2022.
On top of their usual day off on March 17, employees in Ireland will also not be required to work on day after (March 18), which is handily followed up by a weekend this year.
For many of us (myself included), we’ll read that as plenty of time to nurse those hangovers, right? Because the party after a two year break from St Patrick’s Day is surely going to be quite something. Plus, this year frontline healthcare workers will be given a tax-free €800 bonus.
It doesn’t end there, either. The extra day off is set to become permanent, falling on St Brigid’s Day (February 1) each year from 2023. While the UK may be getting an extra bank holiday celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, can we politely suggest it remains a permanent fixture too?
Ireland’s Tánaiste (Deputy Prime Minister) Leo Varadkar said that the government wished to “remember those who lost their lives to Covid and to recognise all workers, volunteers and members of the general public who helped us in this fight against the pandemic, and especially frontline healthcare workers.”
Preparations for Paddy’s Day this year can only have gone up a notch following this news, and the addition of the extra day each February from next year will be welcome addition during the cold months.