While some of us look forward to a well-earned break over the holiday season - for many it's a chance to earn some extra money, while others have no choice but to work. And the people picking up the slack are often migrant workers, those whose friends and family are far away.
More than a million people in the UK work on Christmas Day alone, says the Office of National Statistics.
That number includes 97,000 nurses and 180,000 midwives, as well as people working in emergency services, call centres, and restaurants and hotels.
But working might not necessarily be the worst experience.
It might even mean workplace bonding, and friendships, say people who have done it.
"Well, my company usually orders a festive Christmas lunch for those who are working," says Anastasia Mykhalchuk, who is from Ukraine, and now works in Poland doing customer support for Uber. "I kind of volunteered to work those days, as I am not Catholic. And then I'll go home for the Orthodox one," she says.
"But you really want to spend Orthodox Christmas with your family," she adds.
Meanwhile in hospitals, "people wear hats," observes Hannah Schneiders, a junior doctor, "especially on paediatrics".
"People bring in so much food. Crackers are indeed often involved, and Father Christmas comes round for patients and sometimes staff," adds Caroline Knight, another young doctor.
"Boxing Day, as with anywhere, is a little less jolly but usually involves mopping up leftover food," she says.
Camaraderie at the bagel booth
"Yeah, it was pretty chilled and cheerful. Nobody wanted to be there but we all needed money," Alice Dowhyj said about working on Christmas Eve at the Bagel Factory in Manchester's Piccadilly Station.