In this guide, we will discuss “list of reasons for taking annual leave”, what does annual leave mean, how do you go about asking for it, is annual leave paid or how much are you entitled to are some questions we will answer throughout this blog.
List of reasons for taking annual leave
There are many reasons for taking annual leave. Let’s start by mentioning the reasons why employees should take annual leave and the benefits for their employer:
- Maintaining employee’s performance
- Breaking through habits
- Creativity from play and new experiences
- Maintaining or improving relationships
- Find out what they do at work
- Family commitments.
- If you are taking care of your health.
- Taking advantage of the good weather.
- You are feeling stressed out.
- Vacation/holiday time.
- Taking care of your family or home.
- You are feeling depressed.
- Due to the death of a loved one.
We can all relate to being afraid of going for a few days and coming back to an office full of chaos, which can make us feel very stressed and guilty for leaving in the first place but no matter how much we love our job and our company.
The truth is, we all need some time off and a break from all the stress and pressure we endure every day.
This is one of the main reasons employees forget they are actually legally entitled to take time off.
According to ‘Reed’, “Annual leave is paid time off work that is provided by an employer, which an employee can take for whatever reason they choose.”
Yes, and when we say whatever reason it means you can use it however you want but the whole point is disconnecting yourself from work, even if it is just for a few days.
Stop postponing and start acting. By preparing your holiday in advance, it will give you that “I need time for myself” mentality that will keep growing every day if you actually feed it.
How much annual leave am I entitled to?
In the UK, workers are legally entitled to 5.6 weeks paid holiday a year that may or may not include bank holidays.
However, some employers might even offer a bit more than this.
In addition, the amount of days a worker is entitled to will depend on how often they work per week. For instance:
- Full-time workers who work 5 days a week must receive a total of 28 days’ paid annual leave per year.
- Part-time workers who work 3 days a week are entitled to 17 days’ paid annual leave per year.
If you work more than five days a week, you are still entitled to get 28 days paid annual leave per year.
How much holiday can I actually take?
As indicated by ‘Total Jobs’, “every employee in the UK has a basic entitlement of 5.6 weeks annual leave: that’s 28 days every year for full-time workers and pro-rata for part-time employees. The European Union’s Working Time Directive states that employees should be taking a minimum of 20 days leave every year. But the government has since increased the minimum entitlement from 20 days per annum to 28 days in 2009.”
Even though it was a positive increase, it is considered that British workers have the least amount of holiday entitlement than any other country in the EU and it is a bit shocking to know how British employees aren’t taking the time off they are entitled to.
This phenomenon seems to be explained by the fact that the “challenging economic climate” workers have felt compelled to work overtime and take fewer days off.
Employees might think that working more means being more productive but it has the opposite effect.
“Heavier workloads, tighter deadlines and threatened job security all add to the pressure to perform to the highest standard – even if this means shying away from taking necessary breaks from work.”
Employers should have the responsibility of encouraging employees to take their full holiday entitlement.
However, the reality is that employers even force their employees to work through their holidays because some employers have a business-only mentality where the human resource is not really important but their productivity.
Do I have holiday rights?
Some of us wait impatiently for our next holiday destination or simply yearning for a few days off work (even if we decide to stay at home doing nothing).
However, for most people reaching the end of their leave year and not being able to take their leave because it keeps getting postponed for various reasons.
However, if this is the case you should write a formal letter to your employer since they could be breaking the law and also try getting advice/support from your union rep if you feel unsure about your rights.
You are actually entitled to have a paid holiday leave, it is your right (legal entitlement) to get a break from work.
It is good for your health giving you time to come back with more energy and batteries recharged.
In reality, taking a break from work would be something we need and want to feel better but we usually postpone it because we feel guilty for leaving out team on their own before an important presentation or meeting with a client.
Not taking enough holiday breaks can actually be detrimental to our health since we lose the ability to balance our work life and our personal life.
But why is this? If we are too fatigued or we are pushing ourselves to the limits not thinking about the consequences.
For instance, it is easier to make mistakes when we are too tired and they can be costly or reputation-damaging.
In addition, people don’t actually understand how accidents related to being fatigued are potentially threatening.
Someone working at a factory operating heavy machinery and being too fatigued to operate it can cause long-term damages.
But this, not the only detrimental consequence, if you are married it can also affect your relationship or relationships with other people around you.
How do I request my annual leave?
So you have decided to take your annual leave, so How do you go about doing that?
Well, the process for requesting your leave will actually vary from one company to the other.
However, it will usually involve asking for your time of using an online HR system or a form that you need to deliver in-person to your line manager or your HR department with specifications about the date you will start and the date of your return.
Your manager most likely will be the one to approve it after you have followed the correct procedure or policy established by your employer.
Remember to give them your request in advice so they can have time to approve it but they can still refuse your leave if they consider there is a valid reason for it.
Always make sure to check your company’s policies and procedures first, before handing your request.
Tips for the workaholic
If you are one of the employees married to your job or who thinks the company will burn or disappear if you are absent for a day or two.
Here are some tips on how to get that time off:
- Make sure you give your employer plenty of notice to prevent them from having ‘emergencies’ at the last minute.
- Visualize why this time off is important, not only for you but for the people around you.
- Plan your holiday in advance by booking flights and making hotel reservations ahead of time, honoring your investment.
- Try to plan your holiday with friends or family so you feel compelled to avoid letting them down if the occasion arises and you feel like you have to cancel your whole trip.
- Make a work plan to delegate your work to colleagues before you leave so you will feel more relaxed knowing someone will take care of your duties.
- Make sure to leave all electronic devices that are related to your work at home so you can actually have some time for yourself and can truly relax without having to get that work-related call when you are taking a mojito at the beach.
Why is this blog about a list of reasons for taking annual leave important?
We could think about the reasons for taking annual leave and they are all valid.
Whether you need to spend more time with your family or you just simply want to go to your favorite holiday destination and lay on the beach, make sure you leave the “I need time for myself” mentality on, no matter what.
Especially if you keep making excuses not to go and postponing it all the time.
However, deciding you need time off work to yourself and following through is the hardest part for people who love their jobs and keep postponing it.
If you have decided to go that way, make sure you read and research about your company’s policies and procedures on how you should request time off.
This will reduce the chance of having a rejection. In addition, plan in advance and give plenty of notice.
Please feel free to leave any comments or thoughts about the content of this article!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about a list of reasons for taking annual leave
What are the reasons for taking leave?
There are many reasons for taking leave but let’s talk about 8 of the totally justifiable:
– Family commitments.
– If you are taking care of your health.
– Taking advantage of the good weather.
– You are feeling stressed out.
– Vacation/holiday time.
– Taking care of your family or home.
– You are feeling depressed.
– Due to the death of a loved one.
Why taking annual leave is important?
Annual leave is extremely important for workers because it can help them reduce stress and increase happiness, which subsequently, means an increase in their productivity, reduced staff turnover and reduced absenteeism due to being sick (sick leave).
Can I take my annual leave when I want?
Employers usually have rules and procedures about when and how you can take leave.
Your employer can tell you when to take your leave but your employer needs to give you at least a few days’ notice (usually 2 days) for every day they want you to take.
You would also need to ask for your annual leave with a few days’ notice so your employer can make the necessary arrangements.
How much annual leave can you take at once?
There is no minimum or maximum amount of annual leave that you can take at once or at the same time.
If you and your employer agree, you can take half a day, one day or some days/weeks off.
You don’t have to take all your annual leave at once but the amount available to you will depend on the time you have been working for your employer.
What are good reasons to not work?
Good reasons to take time off work include:
– Being sick or needing time for recovery.
– Having a family emergency or a sick relative.
– Home emergency or car trouble.
– The death of a loved one.
– Feeling stressed.
– Being unsatisfied with your job.
– Poor planning.
Totaljobs.com: “Annual Leave: why holidays are important for employees”
Reed.co.uk: “Annual Leave: What you need to know”