30 days of holiday! Nine long weekends of leisure next year

People look at light decorations at the Ramadan bazaar ahead of the Hari Raya Aidilfitri celebrations in Kuala Lumpur, July 14, 2015. — Reuters pic
People look at light decorations at the Ramadan bazaar ahead of the Hari Raya Aidilfitri celebrations in Kuala Lumpur, July 14, 2015. — Reuters pic

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PETALING JAYA, Aug 4 — With up to 30 days of vacation, Malaysians can look forward to more family time and leisure activities next year. 

In addition to eight long weekends, employees can enjoy one extra by taking a day off on July 8 to extend the Hari Raya Aidilfitri weekend.

Malaysian Employers Federation executive director Datuk Shamsuddin Bardan said the long weekends should not concern employers as they would not affect the number of working days.

“The total number of working days remains the same at 251, similar to this year,” he said.

“Generally, employers do not mind longer weekends, provided the number of days worked per year does not decrease.”

Shamsuddin said the longer weekends would also benefit employees who needed extended leave during major festive seasons.

“The longer weekends could also reduce the number of unplanned or emergency leave taken by employees which could disrupt business operations,” he said.

On the other hand, the long weekends may have an impact on productivity as employees could return to the workplace with post-holiday syndrome.

“Employers should put in place some mechanism to avoid losing momentum in productivity,” he said.

He said employers and employees should utilise the long weekends wisely so both parties could mutually benefit from them.

Malaysian Trades Union Congress president Mohd Khalid Atan was not concerned as there were no extra off days for employees.

“It is coincidence that Hari Raya will fall on Wednesday and Thursday next year. Employees still need to apply for another day of leave on Friday to enjoy a long weekend,” he said. 

Khalid said there was nothing special about the 29 cumulative off days because the calculations were inclusive of Saturdays and Sundays. 

“People only get 30 off days next year at the expense of one day from their annual leave,” he said. 

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