For me (British), I would never say "on Christmas", because "on" is used with a day, not a period. I would say "on Christmas Day", or "on New Year"s Day", or "On Easter Sunday" but "at Christmas" or "at Easter".


Christmas can be understood to be a particular day (December 25) or a seasonal celebration similar to Yule. Hence, the different prepositions, on for the day, at for the seasonal celebration.

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In my experience, the phrase is usually "on Christmas day".

She is visiting her family on Christmas day, and then she"s leaving with her friends to go on a ski trip.

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He plans to propose to her, but he wasn"t sure it would be a good idea to do so at Christmas or to wait until spring.



In English the preposition on is normally used for days of the week, dates, and holidays which fall on specific dates, e.g., Independence Day (Fourth of July)

I"m going away on FridayWe"re flying to Philadelphia on December 23rdWe"ll be opening our gifts on Christmas Day.They will be flying back on New Year"s Day

In American English, on is used before the expression weekend

Things to do in Philadelphia on the weekend


In English, the preposition at is normally used for the time of day, festive periods; and in British English before the word weekend.

The Christmas Season (also called Happy Holidays) basically covers a period of three days: Christmas Eve (24th December), Christmas Day (25th December), and St Stephen"s Day (26th December). Likewise, Easter is celebrated over three days in Anglophone countries: Good Friday, Easter Sunday, and Easter Monday. When speaking about the Christmas or Easter holidays/period, the preposition at is preferred.

At nine o"clock in the morning, we arrive in Philadelphia.We"re visiting friends and relatives at Christmas (the holiday period) This year, Christmas falls at the weekend.


From the website English Club it appears that in some English dialects, the expression on Christmas, is commonly used. However, I would not use this particular structure in a formal setting, or if one had to sit an English language exam.

It is nevertheless a very interesting observation, and something I would have thought not possible until today.

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