Substitute Holiday Implemented This Chuseok: Naver Poll

Chuseok, or Mid-Autumn Festival, is one of the biggest holidays in Korea. Many travel cross-country to visit family or take a short vacation. A new law came into effect this Chuseok holiday that created a 5-day weekend. Passed in 2013, the law states that if a major national holiday should fall on the weekend or on the same day as another holiday, the following work day should be designated as its substitute. The 2014 Chuseok holiday began on a Sunday, prompting the first application of this new law. While most agree that the idea is a good one, many are lamenting the narrow group of citizens it applies to. The substitute holiday is only mandatory for government offices, leaving all other workers at the discretion of their individual companies.

The following is the result of a poll given on Naver’s mobile application. It asked readers to vote for how they plan to spend this inaugural substitute holiday. In first place came “Going to work,” with 54,953 votes (36.6%).

See original poll in Korean along with comments on Naver:

Naver poll


Only those broke public workers get the day off, but regular workers maybe will be included in the future or if our bosses choose to we can take the day off too. The CEOs of this country are so cruel, will they even give us a day to rest? I wanna split those congress guys’ brains open and take a look. Does it make any sense at all for it only to cover a certain class of people??


Really? That day is a holiday?


Tomorrow is a substitute holiday … but I’m going to work … I’m working tomorrow too.


It’s just annoying and feeling some reverse discrimination from other people… Childcare centers and schools are all off so I have to find someone to watch the kids, which is that much harder during a big holiday. It would’ve been better to not have this day at all than something that doesn’t work. Next time a new regulation is made it needs to be something that covers everyone.


If you’re supposed to take a day off, you have to make it so everyone gets a chance. Besides public offices and large companies, how many workers are able to take the day off?

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Substitute holiday … so jealous. I have to go to work.


It’s a substitute holiday, but I’m in my office right now. Oh my, it’s meaningless.


The kindergartens are off today while the parents have to work. Parents who don’t get benefits and who have to leave the kids at home alone… what is this? Where are we supposed to take our kids?


I seriously want to give those congress people a beating.


I am working too. This thing called a substitute holiday is really just a privilege for public servants. It would be better to just have it be a normal public holiday.


Some are taking the day off and some are working, the holiday that wasn’t.


I was included in this so everyone around me is taking the day off… There are a lot of people who aren’t. Seems a bit bittersweet.


Have a great holiday, high level public servants. You entered government service so you should enjoy it kekeke.


I had to work on Chuseok so could I really take a break on the substitute holiday?


If it is a holiday then everyone should treat it the same. What kind of law is this that includes only public servants and workers at large companies, but excludes workers at small to mid-sized companies?


This is for those CEOs who make even regular holidays like a normal working day, going out to have fun while telling their employees to go to work. It’s the land of freedom for them. (I used to work at a company that told the employees they had to work while the bosses went on some trip with their families. Once I heard about that I left. keke) It’s a substitute holiday but will it be that great? I think that it should be compulsory not just a personal choice to have a national holiday or a substitute holiday. Is it to save the small to mid-sized businesses? If so, you have to start by managing the employees of those companies. Are you hoping that job hunters won’t know about the tyrants running those small to mid-sized companies?


Substitute Public Servant Holiday!! What kind of holiday is this? The childcare centers and kindergartens are all closed but the parents have to go to work! Despicable!


If this is to take a break everyone should take a break together. What is this just public servants. Start with the big companies since there’s more people who work there. Let’s see the face of whoever did the research for this idea.


This is the first time this year. If it starts now then little by little all of the companies will follow suit. I didn’t get the day off yet. Let’s look carefully at this and not just bring everyone down to that level. Even for us there are a few more holidays and work demands are getting lighter. All that is needed now is time.

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  • A Gawd Dang Mongolian

    Because that’s what holidays are for.

    Going to work anyway.

  • B

    The ruling above sucks. Working in the private sector vs. public sector always has some issues and differences. Usually the public sector pays less but has better benefits. But in the ruling above, the government should have made it a proper holiday (or subsitute holiday) rather than let it just apply for governmental workers.

    In China, if the holiday falls on the weekdays, you make up for the missing days on the weekends (there are exceptions i.e. Spring festival/Chinese New Year). It sucks big time. What’s the point of having the holidays if you are going to make up for it with your weekends?

  • Sid Driver

    As a teacher I was excited about this holiday and thought I would enjoy a nice quiet day out. Boy was I wrong… it was as busy as a Saturday or Sunday out there. (I still enjoyed it though.)

    I remember talking about this with friends back home and thinking it was a good idea. So, based on the law… if Koreans are working that day would they receive holiday pay? Or is it just a recommended holiday?

    • Boris

      I think it is probably the latter.

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