Neighbours fans will have to struggle through their first Christmas without the Ramsay Street residents for the first time since 2018, as both Home and Away and Neighbours are set to take breaks in the UK and Australia.
Home and Away season finale date
Home and Away takes an annual break each November or December in both the UK and Australia.
This year, the Australian season finale will air on Thursday 25th November. Aussie fans of the Summer Bay soap will be treated to a bumper eight episodes in the final week, with triple bills airing on both Wednesday 24th and Thursday 25th November.
The Australian final episodes will see Ryder (Lukas Radovich) buried alive after a stunt goes badly wrong, a marriage proposal by Ari (Rob Kipa-Williams) and a dramatic showdown between Mia (Anna Samson), Chloe (Sam Barrett) and newcomer Matthew (James Sweeny).
For UK viewers, the final episode of the year will air on Monday 22nd November, in a dramatic cliffhanger which sees a stranger target Tane (Ethan Browne), with repercussions for countless Summer Bay favourites.
The final episode scheduled is the afternoon showing, which will air at the earlier time of 12:30pm, as Channel 5 shifts things around to make way for afternoon Christmas films.
While schedule changes have recently seen the show’s evening airing move from Channel 5 to 5STAR, there is no 6pm repeat scheduled on 5STAR on Monday 22nd November. As such, viewers wishing to watch the final episode in the evening will have to rely on 5STAR’s ‘first look’ at 6:30pm on Friday 19th November.
The show will return to the UK on Monday 3rd January 2022 after a six-week break, while the Australian return date hasn’t yet been announced.
Neighbours season finale date
Unlike the past few years, the Melbourne-based series will take a three-week break through December, leaving viewers with a huge cliffhanger. For Australian fans, this will be the first time that the show has been off air over the Christmas period since 2017.
The 2021 season finale will air in Australia on Thursday 9th December, and a day later in the UK on Friday 10th December.
The final UK episodes on Channel 5 will air at the slightly altered times of 1pm and 6pm, as Neighbours’ afternoon airing is temporarily moving to 1pm as of Monday 22nd November.
The break means that when the series returns on Monday 3rd January 2022, both countries will see new episodes on the same day.
This will bring to an end a transmission gap that occurred in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the UK reduced the number of episodes being aired, while Australia kept to the usual schedule.
To allow the two countries to realign, 10 Peach recently dropped down to airing four episodes a week while Channel 5 stuck to airing the traditional five. The gap between the two countries has been gradually reducing over the past few weeks, and will finally realign at the beginning of 2022.
Neighbours became an all-year-round soap in 2018, airing without a Christmas break in both 2018 and 2019. Last December saw the show take a short break in the UK while it remained on air in Australia, further increasing the gap between the two countries.
To recap, for UK viewers, the final episode of Home and Away will air at 12:30pm on Monday 22nd November on Channel 5, and the previous evening at 6:30pm on 5STAR. The final episode of Neighbours airs at 1pm and 6pm on Friday 10th December.
In Australia, the final episode of Home and Away airs on Thursday 25th November, while the final episode of Neighbours will air on Thursday 9th December.