Only 4 long weekends in 2018? Fret not, here's how you can make it 9

People flying kites at Marina Barrage. PHOTO: SINGAPORE KITE ASSOCIATION

SINGAPORE - The year 2018 will have just four long weekends, making it one of the worst years in terms of the number of long weekends for workers to look forward to.

Of the 11 gazetted public holidays announced on Wednesday (April 5), only four - New Year's Day, Chinese New Year, Good Friday and Hari Raya Puasa - fall on a Friday or Monday.

But fret not - taking leave on a day (or five) could net you five four-day weekends.

Here's a quick guide to public holidays in 2018.

The 11 days to look forward to

Take note: The "dry" months without a public holiday are April, July, September and October.

Chope your leave now

While there are only four long weekends, taking five days of leave (shh, don't say we told you) will unlock another five four-day weekends.

This means a total of nine long weekends next year - not too bad if you move fast and "chope" that leave first.

January: Three-day weekend (Dec 30-Jan 1) as New Year's Day falls on a Monday

February: Three-day weekend (Feb 16-18) as the first day of Chinese New Year falls on Friday

March: Another three-day weekend (March 30-April 1), thanks to Good Friday

April/May: Taking leave on two Mondays (April 30 and May 28) will net you two four-day weekends as Labour Day and Vesak Day both fall on Tuesdays.

June: Three-day weekend (June 15-17) as Hari Raya Puasa is on a Friday

August: National Day falls on a Thursday, so taking leave on Friday (Aug 10) means you get a four-day weekend

November: Yes to another four-day weekend - just take leave on Monday (Nov 5) as Deepavali falls on a Tuesday

December: Ditto for Christmas - taking leave on Christmas Eve (Monday) will ensure a leisurely, four-day-long Christmas weekend

The 'good' and 'bad' years

Next year's four long weekends is on par with the "bad" years of 2013 and 2014, which also had only four. There were five long weekends in 2011 and 2012, and six in 2016.

It is also a sharp drop from the seven long weekends in 2017.

The best year for public holidays in recent times is the bumper crop of an additional public holiday and two four-day weekends in 2015, Singapore's Jubilee year.

That year saw seven long weekends, with a one-off SG50 public holiday on Aug 7 stretching the National Day weekend to four days. Chinese New Year also fell on Thursday and Friday, forming another four-day weekend.

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