Holidays Around the World: Boxing Day
It’s the day after Christmas and while many families will be relaxing with loved ones, many others around the world will be celebrating Boxing Day. It is famously celebrated in Great Britain but what you may not know is that the holiday is observed in many other countries around the world, including Canada, Australia, Kenya, South Africa, and New Zealand, just to name a few.
The origins of the name “Boxing Day” can be traced back to the reason for the holiday itself. The term comes from the 1830s, and in the Oxford English Dictionary it is literally defined as “the first week-day after Christmas day, observed as a holiday on which postmen, errand boys, and servants of various kinds expect to receive a Christmas box.” A Christmas box would consist of small gifts or money for people in service positions, though now this tradition has ended for the most part.
Today, Boxing Day is a major shopping holiday, much like Black Friday is here in the States. Many businesses in Canada, Australia, and the U.K. will have Boxing Day sales and open their stores earlier than normal.
Boxing Day is also a very popular day for sporting events in these countries, such as horse racing, rugby and soccer matches, and in Australia, cricket. With team sports, it is customary to match up two teams within the same division so that the fans will not have to travel too far during the holidays.
Boxing Day demonstrates that regardless of differences, the spirit of the season remains the same. On behalf of everyone at Pierbusseti, we would like to wish our friends in the U.K. and all around the world a very happy Boxing Day!