Supermarkets close shop for Boxing Day to thank staff who played a key role during the Covid-19 pandemic

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Supermarket bosses plan to shut their shutters on Boxing Day this year and give hundreds of thousands of workers an extra Christmas break. Daily Live reports.

2020 kicked off a trend in UK supermarkets and stores offering Boxing Day’s day off to loyal staff working during the pandemic and curfew.

So far, a number of major supermarkets have confirmed that they will once again close their doors on Boxing Day 2021.

Asda is one of the few that has yet to confirm, but has hinted that it will also close on December 26, which falls on a Sunday this year.

Sainsbury’s and Morrisons, which opened on Boxing Day 2020, have already confirmed that they are going to close this year.

For Sainsbury’s, that means allowing around 170,000 employees a day.

Other retailers that have confirmed they will be closing on Boxing Day include Wilko, Waitrose, M&S and Iceland.

Daily Live He’s put together a handy guide to confirm which stores will stay open and which will close on Celebration Day 2021.

Retailers, including Asda and Lidl, have yet to say whether they will close.

Last year Asda closed its stores on December 26 and closed all supermarkets outside the Lidl M25/London area. Tesco usually opens on Boxing Day and has yet to announce its plans to close this year.

Expect hours to decrease in many stores on Monday, December 27 and Tuesday, December 28, as both are public holidays as Christmas and Boxing Day fall on Saturday and Sunday respectively.


Last year, Morrisons kept Supermarkets open on Boxing Day and offered double pay to staff, but the retailer confirmed it will keep 497 stores closed on December 26 this year.

That means Morrisons will be closed two days in a row, Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

For Morrisons opening hours online store locator Here.


Aldi has preferred to close its stores on Boxing Day for over 30 years, and this year is no different.

Aldi supermarkets across the country will be closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. The stores are expected to close at 6 PM on Christmas Eve and reopen at 8 AM on December 27.

As Christmas approaches, Aldi will offer extended opening hours. Find by checking the hours at your nearest Aldi supermarkets. store locator Here.

Sainsbury’s, Argos and Habitat

Last year, Sainsbury’s opened on Boxing Day, but in September the supermarket chain announced that it would close all its supermarkets, convenience stores and gas stations on December 26.

Argos and Habitat, owned by Sainsbury, will also be closed.

Simon Roberts, CEO of Sainsbury, said: “Christmas is a really special time for many, but last year many of us weren’t able to celebrate it the way we wanted due to curfews.

“Recognizing this and to give a big thank you to all our colleagues for everything they’ve done over the last challenging year, we will close all our supermarkets, convenience stores and gas stations, as well as Argos and Habitat stores, this is Boxing Day.

“I want to thank our customers in advance for their understanding, which means as many of our team as possible are taking a well-deserved break from spending time with their loved ones.”

Check out Sainsbury’s store locator here for opening hours for supermarkets in your area. for slang store locator, go here.

Waitrose and John Lewis

All Waitrose supermarkets will be closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day, with the exception of the Welcome Break highway service stations and those in Shell forecourts.

Most Waitrose stores will close at 6pm on Christmas Eve with extended opening hours for the days through December 24.

The retailer said its John Lewis stores will also be closed “as usual” on Boxing Day, with the exception of the store in Trafford.

Check out Waitrose store locator here for opening hours in your area.

by John Lewis store locator here.


Marks & Spencer will be closed again on Boxing Day 2021.

Boss Steve Rowe confirmed the move in a message to 70,000 workers and said the shutdown was to thank the staff for their hard work over the past year.

Mr. Rowe wrote: “Across the country, our colleagues have been there for our customers in the most challenging conditions.

“As a small thank you for their incredible hard work, we have made the decision to close our operations once again on Boxing Day this year to allow our colleagues to spend more time with their families and loved ones.”

Check M&S opening hours Here.

Marks and Spencer
Marks and Spencer gave Boxing Day to 70,000 employees this year


In September, Iceland’s boss announced in BBC1’s Question Time that the chain’s supermarkets would be closed on Boxing Day as well as Christmas Day.

When host Fiona Bruce asked if she wanted workers to take Boxing Day off, Iceland boss Richard Walker replied “yes” before confirming that Iceland would keep its stores closed on December 26.

Check out Iceland great finder For working hours closest to you.


Discount retailer Wilko has confirmed that it will be closed on Boxing Day.

A spokesperson said: “As a family-owned retailer, Wilko understands the importance of spending quality time with loved ones after such a difficult year.

“Wilko has decided to give all team members a day off on December 26 to spend this Christmas with their families.”

Check out Wilko store locator for working hours.

Home Bargaining

Home Bargains says it closed all 500 of its stores on Boxing Day to thank its employees. They will also close on New Year’s Eve.

A spokesperson said: “We know how incredibly hard all of our colleagues have worked over the past year to continue serving the overconfident local communities.

“In light of this, we thought it was right to reward the store teams by making the decision to close all our stores both on New Year’s Eve and on New Year’s Eve, and to close our stores early at 17.00 on Christmas Eve.

“As a family business, we know the importance of being with those we care most about at Christmas, now more than ever, and this is our way of thanking all of our colleagues for their continued hard work and dedication.”

Check House Deals opening hours Here.

Holland and Barrett

Health chain Holland and Barrett is giving its 500 store and warehouse staff a day off on Boxing Day.

All stores will be closed on December 26.

“The decision to close our stores in the UK and Ireland on December 25 and 26, one of the busiest trading periods of the year, is to thank our hard working colleagues,” said Anthony Houghton, group retail and property director. It has been tirelessly and under very difficult restrictions since the coronavirus pandemic began in 2020.

“I want to thank everyone in the Netherlands and Barrett for their dedication and continued hard work to each other and to our customers, and I hope that this time away from work will ensure they spend quality time with loved ones during this time.”

Check out Holland and Barrett’s opening hours Here.

Pets at Home

The retailer has confirmed that for the second year in a row, Pets at Home will be closed on Boxing Day.

Pets at Home CEO Peter Pritchard said: “Our people are the beating heart of our business and have worked tirelessly this year to ensure the nation’s pets and owners have access to everything they need to stay happy and healthy.

“Caring for our colleagues is something we take very seriously, and closing our stores again on Boxing Day is another small way to show our gratitude and say thank you. It’s a little early to wish someone a Merry Christmas, but that our colleagues can use this time to relax with their family, friends and of course their pets. We hope.”

Control Pets in the Home opening hours Here.

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