Federal holidays are a time when many private banks and federal banks close. This can cause delays in transactions and reduce the availability of services. Even if your local branch closes, there may still be options for you to do your banking.

Banks that are closed on holidays will not process any transactions, including bills payments, deposits and bank-to bank transfers, until the next business day. In-person services will not be available and customer service may be limited depending on which bank you choose.

This article will discuss bank holidays and what to do if your bank is closed.

What’s a bank holiday?

Bank holidays are days that financial institutions close for business, typically to observe a federal holiday. This applies to all federal branches and banks, as well as private banks.

Federal Reserve branches and banks are usually open on Fridays when a federal holiday falls. However, if the holiday falls on Sunday, they will usually close the next Monday.

Private banks may choose to close on federal holidays. You can call ahead to find out if your bank will close on a specific day or check online. For customers’ reference, some banks offer a holiday schedule via their websites.

What are U.S. Federal Holidays?

Each year, the Federal Reserve System observes 11 federal holidays. Five of these holidays, Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Memorial Day), Labor Day, Washington’s Birthday (Presidents Day), and Columbus Day are observed every Monday. Their exact dates vary from year to year. Because Thanksgiving is always observed on the fourth Wednesday of November, it also has a date that varies.

Federal bank holidays in 2023

Federal holiday

New Year’s Day January 1**
Martin Luther King Jr. Day January 16
Washington’s Birthday February 20
Memorial Day May 29,
Juneteenth National Independence Day June 19
Independence Day July 4
Labor Day September 4,
Columbus Day October 9
Veterans Day November 11*
Thanksgiving Day November 23
Christmas Day December 25,

*This holiday falls on a Saturday, so the Federal Reserve will not observe it. **This holiday falls on Sunday. The Federal Reserve will observe it on the Monday following.

What should you do if your bank is shut

It’s a smart idea to mark bank holidays in your calendar to remind you to plan ahead for any in-person or urgent banking. This will save you time and money, as well as avoiding unnecessary trips to the local branch.

What if you don’t want to do your banking during or after your holiday? Let’s look at some other options.

  • You can use an ATM. You can use an ATM even on bank holidays. Many banks, including Chase, Wells Fargo and Bank of America, offer ATMs that can be used 24 hours a day.
  • Online banking. Some banking tasks, such as opening a new bank account or scheduling a transfer can be done online via the mobile app or website of your bank. However, transactions are not processed by online banks on federal holidays.
  • Use a payment app. Venmo and Paypal let you send and receive money to your friends and allow you to shop online and in-store. You can also send money online using Apple Pay, Cash App and Western Union. However, you might experience delays.

Paying bills during a bank holiday

If a bill payment’s due date falls on a bank holiday it will not be processed until the following day. This can result in additional fees.

Many banks offer the option to set up automatic recurring payments. This route is recommended. You can set the bill payment’s processing day a few days in advance. This will provide some protection in the event that a due date falls on an official holiday.

What’s next?

It can be frustrating to have your bank close for a holiday and you need to make a transaction. There are many ways to prepare.

You might want to call your local branch before you go to the bank. To avoid problems on the day, you can use a 24-hour ATM or set up automated payments (perhaps a few days ahead to be safe), or do your banking beforehand to avoid any issues.