How to Get the Most Out of Your Annual Leave
Did you know that in the UK the average Brit in full-time employment wastes 188 days of holiday leave throughout their lifetime? When asked to reveal why they lost or missed out on their entitlement, the most common reasons given were being ‘too busy’ to take holiday (62%), ‘forgetting’ to take it (51%) or ‘struggling to coordinate leave with fellow colleagues’ (29%). If you’re looking to get on top of your vacation days, and not end up an overworked British statistic, here are a few tips on how to take advantage of the PTO you already have.
When speaking to any avid travellers, planning was the biggest piece of advice they had to share. The best way to plan your annual leave is to start at the beginning of the year. Sit down with your spouse or family and make a list of the top places you would want to go that year. If you have a destination that involves a long haul flight, plan what time you would be able to take a two-week trip away. That way you will be in full knowledge that 8 to 10 days of your annual leave are already accounted for. With your remaining days plan a few long weekend trips that are closer to home. Many think that pre-planning for the year won't look so good to their employer, however, in contrast, managers would ideally like to know as far in advance as possible what your plans are so that there aren’t any problems. If you and your manager aren’t talking, regularly, about taking a vacation, you could be missing out on opportunities you didn’t even think you had.
Another way to make the most out of your annual leave is to combine your holiday with public holidays. If you are searching for a beach getaway to somewhere like the Caribbean, try to plan your holiday around the Easter and May bank holiday. That way you can have nearly three weeks of holiday, but you would only be taking nine days of your leave.
Have a Workcation
Combine work and play with a workcation. Although this may not work for everyone, in today's digital age, taking a half-on, half-off work vacation is a lot more doable than before. One way to do this is by extending a business trip through the weekend so you can explore a city outside of your work schedule.
Take a Mental Break
For many of us, the idea of taking work away from the office, especially on holiday is horrifying. If this is the case, the best way to go about your breaks is to get in and get out. It can be fun to travel little and often by taking a Thursday and Friday off for a long weekend. Try to take this time completely away from work either by informing your work that you will have no internet connection or simply just not looking at your emails. Sometimes, all it takes is a few days off the grid—or at least just off email—to feel restored come Monday morning.