Society Magazine

Holiday Research: Half of Our Annual Leave Wasted

Posted on the 17 July 2015 by 72point @72hub
Holiday Research: Half of our Annual Leave Wasted

The average Brit is only able to relax for 11 days a year, it emerged yesterday.

A study of 2,000 workers found the average person ends up spending over half of their 26 days annual leave on personal chores, appointments and tasks which we just cannot get done while working.

Other reasons to use up our holiday include taking time off to look after sickly relatives, looking after the kids during school holidays and waiting at home for a delivery.

And when factoring in travel to and from holiday destinations and other commitments, less than half of a person's annual leave is spent fully relaxing.

The research, which was commissioned by, found over a third have taken unpaid leave because they used all their annual leave up and needed time off.

While a similar number have called in a sickie- just to get admin or chores done.

Alan Ruston, Sales Director at, which commissioned the study, said: "With working pressures and many people negotiating a quite hectic routine, it seems we're struggling to fit everything in.

"People are using much of their hard-earned holiday just to get certain jobs or admin done and that means they aren't getting the most of their annual leave.

"Things like having to wait at home for a parcel delivery can be avoided and exploring your options to ensure any steps that can be taken to minimise chores or the amount of time waiting will help restore the work-life balance."

The research found the average Brit has 26 days of annual leave per year, but uses 15 of those catching up on odd jobs, admin, travelling to and from holidays or in meeting family obligations.

They will only spend 11 of their 26 annual days actually on holiday or able to properly relax free of commitments results showed.

In fact the majority (40 per cent) end up wasting their designated holiday time on doctor and medical appointments, said the poll.

While others confessed to spending valued annual leave waiting indoors for handymen, looking after kids when they're sick or making arrangements to move house.

Almost a fifth said they use their holiday to complete DIY jobs, while others confessed to using it to catch up on paying bills and completing various admin.

And weekends don't offer enough either time it seems, as 35 per cent confessed they take days off just for a chance to relax at home.

Three in ten admitted getting the same annual leave is a cause of arguments with their significant other, with 27 per cent who said they use holiday just to spend time as a couple.

A fifth of adults say their boss isn't lenient when it comes to having days off for jobs such as picking up children or staying in for a parcel, meaning they take annual leave instead.

The situation is so desperate for some that over one in twenty confessed they resort to taking unpaid leave every year due to spending all their holiday on odd jobs and chores.

While 32 per cent of adults said they'd even pretended to be ill in order to get their desired days off and still be paid.

Alan Ruston added: ''Staying at home just to get a parcel delivered should soon be a thing of the past.

''There's been a rise in popularity of workplace deliveries, and the emergence of new technologies means a better experience for customers.

''There are also options to have a parcel dropped off or even picked up at a dedicated parcel point, such as your local shop.

''With ever increasing pressures on your time convenience is always key.''

  1. Family events e.g. Weddings, birthdays, graduations...
  2. Medical appointments
  3. Moving house
  4. Attending a funeral
  5. Waiting for a handyman to turn up to fix something: Boiler, internet, water supply
  6. To go Christmas/birthday shopping
  7. Waiting for deliveries
  8. Attending doctors or dentist appointments
  9. Looking after my children when they're ill
  10. Getting the house together
  11. To catch up on DIY
  12. To overcome stress
  13. To look after ill children
  14. For an event of child's -sports day, parent's evening, nativity etc.
  15. To catch up on cleaning and household chores
  16. Looking after sickly relatives
  17. Looking after the children when they are home for the holidays
  18. Packing for a holiday
  19. Getting car serviced
  20. Paying bills and catching up with my personal admin
Holiday Research: Half of our Annual Leave Wasted

Holiday Research: Half of our Annual Leave Wasted
Holiday Research: Half of our Annual Leave Wasted
Holiday Research: Half of our Annual Leave Wasted

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog