Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
WORKPLACE / NOV. 18, 2013
version 8, draft 8

15% of Workers Lose Over 6 Days of Holiday Each Year

chained to your desk

Many office workers are accused of being ‘chained to their desks’, making it hard to get in any quality time at all with their families and loved ones. That's where paid holidays comes in;  to give the tired worker a break from the daily grind and boost them with much needed relaxation time... or so we thought ... According to a Study by Hilton Hotels & Resorts, a staggering number of employees opt out  of taking their annual leave in fear of losing their jobs. In addition, those who do take their annual leave, have a problem separating work and home life while on holiday. The survey results show that many of those polled were still thinking about work, or were actually working, while on holiday. So even if you are brave enough to take your holiday allowance, are you ever really on holiday from your job?  

Experts agree that ''Britain's workforce should be encouraged to take regular time out to recharge their batteries.” So why are so few people following this advice?

Avoiding annual leave…

According to the study, which polled 2,000 professionals, 40% of workers do not take their full holidays and the main reason for this seems to be anxiety over job loss. Employees worry they might lose their job and many feel like they shouldn't take all of their holiday allowance. According to the survey, one in twenty employees admitted that they take only half of the time off they are entitled to because it is ‘frowned upon in their workplace’.

It is this fear of being frowned upon that has affected the average employee’s holiday. The constant worry about being thought of as 'not committed to the job' has taken over all desires of getting away from the office for a week or two to sunnier climates. A surprising 14% of employees stated that they were simply too worried to take time off incase their lost their job. It really seems like people, in some cases, are actually intimidated into not taking their full annual leave.

Bosses frowning upon staff taking their full holiday allocation is a bit counter intuitive as according to expert psychologists "Taking a break from work and enjoying a holiday helps workers both mentally and physically, which really improves their productivity when they go back to work.”

A busy schedule is another reason why so many fail to take their full annual leave with 21% of people said they were just too busy to take the time off. 

Working Holiday?

Those workers who do go on holiday are still guilty of being in the office to a certain degree. That treasured quality time with their families to rest has been tainted with workplace anxiety due to the fact that workers are concerned that colleagues will take their place, their boss will easily handle their workload without them, and their colleagues might mistakenly get credit for their work; resultantly, many workers opt to work while on holiday.

More than a third of workers check their emails while on holiday and more than a quarter phone work to see that the work they left behind is ok. 30% said they spend a large amount of their holiday worrying about what is being said about them at work. If this is how someone is spending their holiday then they are never really taking a holiday in the true sense. They are still chained to the desk except now they are using their smartphones to call and check emails much more easily.



1. I just run out of time to use it
2. I'm too busy to take it all
3. I don't want to take that much time off work
4. It's difficult to fit in around my other colleagues' workloads/meeting schedule
5. I have no reason to take the time off work
6. It's difficult to fit it all in around other colleagues' annual leave
7. I worry I might lose my job
8. I feel like I shouldn't take it all
9. It's frowned upon in my workplace to take the full allocation
10. I worry it looks like I'm not committed to my job

Does this sound like you? If your boss looks down on you for taking all of your holidays, it is a sure sign that you are going to spend what holidays you do take, worrying about your job. You need to commit to taking a break from work in the same measure as you do by committing yourself to your job. Without  proper rest from the office, you can actually do yourself real harm in the long run.



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