Boxing Day takes place on 26th December generally speaking, although there are some people who choose to celebrate the day on the very first weekday following Christmas. This means that if Christmas Day were to fall on a Friday or a Saturday, then Boxing Day would not take place until the Monday for these people, regardless of the date.
Boxing Day is celebrated in a number of countries including the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and many other former British Commonwealth nations, where it is also an official holiday. Boxing Day is also St Stephen’s Day, which is where some of the roots of Boxing Day come from. On St Stephen’s Day churches used to open up their collection boxes to the poor and needy.
Boxing Day was created in order to be an expression of thanks and appreciation, in much the same manner as Christmas tips are today. The roots of Boxing Day stretch all the way back to the Middle Ages, where members of the merchant class would fill boxes with fruits and food and give them to tradespeople, servants and the less fortunate. This was particularly important to servants, as they usually worked on Christmas Day itself and therefore, in many ways, the day after Christmas Day was intended to be ‘their’ day, where they had time off in order to be able to celebrate the holiday season with their own loved ones.
In the 21st century the giving of boxes includes filling up boxes with clothing and food for the needy.