Apr 29, 2024

May 1 and 8 in Czechia: What Shops Are Open?

Having a free Wednesday in the middle of the week sounds great, but what happens if you need to grab some groceries or do some shopping on a public holiday in the Czech Republic?

The big question, though is whether large stores will be open, as there is little logic to the law that passed in 2016. The answer is mixed, with stores open on May 1 (Labor Day) but closed on May 8 (Victory Day). See below for more details.

This guide will help you navigate store closures on May 1st and May 8th, which both fall on Wednesdays in 2024, as well as other public holidays throughout the year.

Good News for Shoppers on May 1st!

While some public holidays mean closed shops, there’s good news for May 1st. Stores are permitted to stay open on this national holiday. Here are other public holidays where shops can operate normally:

  • December 24th (Christmas Eve) – with limited hours (until noon)
  • Good Friday (falling between April 20th and 23rd in 2024)
  • July 5th (Day of the Slavic Saints Cyril and Methodius)
  • July 6th (Jan Hus Day)

Plan Ahead for These Closed Shop Holidays

May 8th (Victory Day) falls under a different category. This, along with other public holidays, requires shops larger than 200 square meters to close their doors. This includes all major retail chains. Here’s a list of these holidays:

  • December 25th (Christmas Day)
  • December 26th (St. Stephen’s Day)
  • January 1st (New Year’s Day)
  • Easter Monday
  • May 8th (Victory Day)
  • September 28th (Czech Statehood Day)
  • October 28th (Day of the Establishment of the Independent Czechoslovak State)
READ ALSO:   This Street in Brno Says Goodbye to Cars and Turns into a "Living Room"

Exceptions to the Rule

There are exceptions. Pharmacies, gas stations, and shops at airports, railway stations (including Prague’s Hlavní nádraží), and hospitals are exempt. Delivery services are not covered by the law and should operate as normal. However, personal-shopper services that rely on sourcing items from supermarkets will be faced with limited suppliers.

The Czech Trade Inspection Authority enforces these regulations, and shops that break the rules face fines.

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