National Coffee Break Day Date in the current year: January 20, 2024

National Coffee Break Day Taking breaks during work is essential to your productivity and mental health. National Coffee Break Day is celebrated annually on January 20 to raise awareness of the importance of taking short breaks to reduce stress, boost efficiency, and build good work relationships.

A coffee break is exactly what it says on the tin: a short rest period when employees can drink their morning coffee. Over time, the term has acquired a more general meaning of any short break from work during the day. Such breaks usually last from 10 to 20 minutes. Unlike lunch breaks that are often unpaid, coffee breaks are typically paid.

Coffee breaks allegedly originated in Stoughton, Wisconsin in the late 19th century. The tradition was initiated by the wives of Norwegian immigrants. The city even hosts the annual Stoughton Coffee Break Festival to celebrate its status as the birthplace of the coffee break.

By 1902, two New York City-based companies, the Barcolo Company and the Larkin Soap Company, established regular coffee breaks for their employees, although it is unclear which one was the first to do it. After World War II, the practice of writing the coffee breaks into union contracts became commonplace, and coffee breaks became a fixture in American culture.

A coffee break is usually taken in the mid-morning, or at the end of the first third of the work shift. In some companies, coffee breaks occur twice a day, in the morning and in the afternoon. The coffee break may have a set hour, but some companies allow their employees to take their coffee break whenever they want. Outside of the United States, especially in the United Kingdom, this type of work break is often called the tea break or simply tea.

In Sweden, the practice of taking coffee breaks twice a day, in the morning and in the afternoon, is called fika. Fika is more than just a regular coffee break though; it is somewhat of a social institution. Fika often serves as an informal meeting between employees and managers, and in some companies, it may be considered impolite not to participate.

The origins of National Coffee Break Day are unclear, but it was probably created by someone who wanted to remind people about the importance of taking regular breaks. The best way to celebrate the holiday is, of course, to take your deserved coffee break during the day and encourage your co-workers to do the same. Even if you normally prefer to spend your coffee break alone, today is the day to change up your routine and spend it bonding with your coworkers.

If you’re a manager or boss, consider buying coffee and snacks for your employees to celebrate the occasion, and don’t get mad at them if they spend an extra few minutes enjoying their coffee break because team bonding is a great thing.

And don’t forget to snap a photo of your coffee or take a selfie with your coworkers and post the picture on social media with the hashtags #CoffeeBreakDay and #NationalCoffeeBreakDay to encourage people to take a break and enjoy coffee, tea, or a cigarette — whatever helps them to unwind and recharge.

Remind me with Google Calendar


Unofficial Holidays



National Coffee Break Day, observances in the US, unofficial holidays, coffee break, work break