Hours of Operation
Hours of Operation
In big cities, most banks are open weekdays from 9 until 5 or 6. Some are open until 7, and many are open Saturday morning until 1 and some until 4. In smaller towns, hours are 9:30 to 3:30. Saturday hours are 10 to 2, if they’re open at all. Normal office hours for most businesses are weekdays 9 to 5.
The major national museums and galleries are open daily 9–6, including lunchtime, but have shorter hours on Sunday. Regional museums are usually closed Monday and have shorter hours in winter. In London many museums are open late one evening a week.
Independently owned pharmacies are generally open Monday through Saturday 9:30–5:30, although in larger cities some stay open until 10 pm; local newspapers list which pharmacies are open late.
Usual retail business hours are Monday through Saturday 9–5:30 or 10–6:30, Sunday noon–4. In some small villages shops may close at 1 pm once a week, often Wednesday or Thursday. They may also close for lunch and not open on Sunday at all. In large cities—especially London—department stores stay open late (usually until 7:30 or 8) one night a week, usually Thursday. On national holidays most stores are closed, and over the Christmas holidays most restaurants are closed as well.
Holidays are January 1, New Year's Day; Good Friday and Easter Monday; May Day (first Monday in May); spring and summer bank holidays (last Monday in May and August, respectively); December 25, Christmas Day; and December 26, Boxing Day (day after Christmas). If these holidays fall on a weekend, the holiday is observed on the following Monday. During the Christmas holidays many restaurants, as well as museums and other attractions, may close for at least a week—call to verify hours. Book hotels for Christmas travel well in advance, and check whether the hotel restaurant will be open.