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Italian traditions For Members

Will Italy have an extra public holiday from 2024?

The Local Italy
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Will Italy have an extra public holiday from 2024?
The Italian Air Force's aerobatic unit, the Frecce Tricolori (Tricolor Arrows) fly over Piazza del Popolo in Rome on November 4th, 2023 to mark National Unity and Armed Forces Day, (Photo by Alberto PIZZOLI / AFP)

Italy marked Armed Forces Day on November 4th, but the date is not a public holiday - although the government has said this will soon change.

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Since 1919, Italy has marked the Giorno dell'Unità nazionale e Giornata delle Forze Armate, or National Unity and Armed Forces Day, every November 4th with a display of military power and a tribute to fallen soldiers by Italy's head of state.

But unlike many similar occasions it doesn't mean a day off work for Italian employees - or it hasn't since 1977, when it ceased to be an official public holiday and instead became a national day.

Italy's defence minister said on Saturday that the government is planning to change it back - which would mean Italy has 12 public holidays a year, up from the current 11.

"A new law is being drawn up to make November 4th a national holiday again", minister Guido Crosetto told reporters at an event in Cagliari. Doing so would be "an act of civility," he said.

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Italy's Senate in July approved a bill restoring November 4th as a public holiday, which is now awaiting final approval by the lower house of parliament.

The date commemorates the end of World War I for Italy and the anniversary of the day an armistice ended the fighting between Italian forces and the battered Austro-Hungarian Army in 1918.

Italy is known for having a relatively generous number of public holidays - the highest of any EU country other than Austria, which has 13.

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Marcia 2023/11/07 00:00
Sounds like a good idea.

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