Sometimes, a holiday will fall on a Thursday. This means that you have to go back to work on Friday before you reach the weekend. Germans have a particular word for this kind of work day: Brückentag.
The word Brückentag translates to “bridge day”, and it defines the work day that falls between a holiday and the weekend. No one wants to come back to work for just one day, so people often request to take off the Brückentag. For people who don’t have many vacation days, taking off a Brückentag makes it easier for them to have a long holiday without using many of their days.
In the United States, Black Friday is sometimes a Brückentag. Many people are off on Thanksgiving Day, but not on Black Friday. Thus, they come back to work for one day before the weekend arrives.
In Germany, Brückentage often fall between holidays like Christmas and New Year. Certain regions in Germany also have holidays related to events like carneval, creating Brückentage in between those holidays and the weekend.
Although no one wants to work on a Brückentag, at least it serves as a bridge to the weekend, allowing you to finish all of your outstanding work before kicking up your feet!
By Nicole Glass, Editor of The Week in Germany