How to Make Holiday Custody Schedules

With Custody X Change, you can create a unique parenting time schedule for any holiday. First, explore popular ways to share custody on holidays. Then, find the four steps to create a holiday schedule below.

For information on how holiday schedules work with your repeating schedules, review the basics of custody calendars and schedules.

Step 1: Choose your country or religion

To begin, click the "calendar" tab at the top of the app.

Then, click the "holidays" tab to the left of your calendar (or beneath your calendar, if you're on a phone).

Next, click the "country" button, and check the types of holidays you celebrate: U.S., Canadian, Australian or Jewish. You can select multiple options.

Step 2: Schedule holidays from the list

The app gives you two ways to work from the list of holidays that appears. You can use templates to schedule a set of holidays instantly, and you can schedule holidays one by one.

Use holiday templates

Created by custody experts, templates reflect the most-common holiday arrangements. In just a few clicks, they give you a complete holiday schedule that you can customize.

Your holiday schedules from other Custody X Change calendars are also available as templates.

To use a template, click the "templates" button.

The options that appear depend on the countries or religion you selected in Step 1. If you selected multiple, choose one to work on first, using the "country" drop-down box.

Users with multiple Custody X Change calendars also choose whether to import holidays from an exisiting calendar or use a template based on their child's age.

If you're working with age-based templates for a country, you'll see the option to select your child's age. Parents with multiple children should choose the oldest one's age group or use a different calendar for each child (if the children follow different schedules).

If you're working with templates for Jewish holidays, you'll select how to share time: have parents alternate who gets a particular day each year, share every holy day or give Mom or Dad all the holy days. Fow now, choose one option; later, you can adjust the individual visits.

When you click "use this template," all the template's visits get added to your calendar. Your holiday list marks the added visits with a green check and shows an overview of how parents share each occasion.

To edit a holiday visit, click it in the list or in the calendar. From there, you can delete the holiday, assign it to a different parent or change its date and times.

To add more holidays one by one, use the method below.

Schedule holidays one by one

If you don't want to use a template, you can schedule holidays one at a time. From the list, click on the holiday you want to schedule.

A drop-down menu will show ways you can allocate parenting time over that holiday:

  • By alternating which parent gets physical custody on the holiday each year (one parent in years that end in an odd number, the other in years that end with an even number)
  • By assigning the holiday to one parent regardless of the year (popular for Mother's Day and Father's Day)
  • By assigning the holiday to whomever already has physical custody at the start (often used for Monday school breaks)
  • By assigning the holiday — or, more commonly, part of it — to whomever does not already have custody that day (only for one-day holidays)

The "whoever has no time" option works well if you want to split a holiday with the other parent every year. For example, you could use it to give your child time with both parents on Halloween.

Select the rule that works best for your family, then define the holiday's dates.

Perhaps your family's Labor Day celebration lasts Saturday evening through Tuesday afternoon. Since the holiday itself falls on Monday, you would set the holiday period to start two days beforehand (Saturday) and end one day after (Tuesday).

Repeat the above process for all other holidays that will deviate from your regular schedule.

Step 3: Add unlisted holidays and birthdays

To add a birthday or an annual holiday that's not listed, click the "new holiday or birthday" button at the bottom of the holiday list, and follow the prompts.

To add a special occasion that won't repeat, use a one-time change.

Step 4: Set paramaters for vacations

Notice the section at the bottom of the holidays tab called "unspecified vacations." Here, you click on a parent to set parameters for how long and how often he or she can take the child on vacation. You can also specify how far in advance the other parent must be notified and whether vacations may take place during the school year.

Since these vacations are unspecified — meaning they don't have exact dates yet — they will not appear on your calendar. For now, the terms will appear only in your parenting plan. When either parent is ready to schedule a vacation, do so by creating a one-time change.

What's next

Once your calendar has holiday schedules, you're ready to focus on one-time changes. Use these any time parents agree to deviate from the parenting schedule.

Custody X Change is software that creates personalized custody schedules, including for holidays.

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