There are officially eleven holidays in Costa Rica, of which nine are mandatory payment and two non-mandatory payment.
For 2020, the dates of the holidays are the following:
- Wednesday, January 1st: New Year
- Thursday, April 9th: Holy Thursday
- Friday April 10th: Good Friday
- Saturday, April 11th: Juan Santamaria Day
- Friday, May 1st: Labor Day
- Saturday, July 25th: Guanacaste Day
- Sunday, August 2nd: Virgin of Los Angeles Day (non-mandatory payment holiday)
- Saturday, August 15th: Mother’s Day
- Tuesday, September 15th: Independence Day
- Tuesday, December 1st: Abolition of the Army Day (non-mandatory payment holiday)
- Friday, December 25th: Christmas
On December 5th, 2019 the Legislature approved the elimination of the October 12th holiday (Cultures Day) and declared December 1st (Abolition of the Army Day) as a new holiday of non-mandatory payment.
The distinction of mandatory and non-mandatory payment holidays is applied for those workplaces where the payment is made on a weekly basis (in non-commercial activities), for the time worked during the week. Therefore, payment must not be recognized if an employee does not work in a non-mandatory payment holiday, otherwise, if the employee works it, the pay day should be recognized as an ordinary payment.
On the other hand, in commercial workplaces whose payment is biweekly or monthly, the salary already has the payment recognition of holidays, regardless of whether it is a mandatory or non-mandatory payment holiday; thus, if the employee works on a holiday, the salary of a single day must be additionally recognized to complete the double payment.