The average Brit has 28 days of annual leave including Bank Holidays, but with clever planning you can eke out a few extra and start enjoying more time away from the office.
Start a holiday savings account
Open an account specifically for holidays and start planning where you’ll go. By being financially prepared, you can start thinking about how much you’ll need to save for your 2020 holidays. These can be broken down into manageable monthly payments. The average British family spends £6,000 on holidays per year, which represents a quarter of the household disposable income, which means saving £500 per month per year.
Short haul v Long haul
Once you’ve worked out your holiday budget, you can start planning. If you like exploring lots of different places, short-haul destinations and stay-cations might be the way forward, and Europe is still the number one holiday destination for Brits, making a European city break the perfect weekend getaway. Book over a bank holiday for a three-day break without using any additional annual leave.
For long-haul holidays, choose to go away over Easter and take the Maundy Thursday, the week of Easter and the following weekend, and in exchange for using five days annual leave, you can book yourself an 11-day holiday. Alternatively, book 10 days off in May and receive an 18-day holiday, by booking around the two Bank Holidays.
Plan when you want to go on holiday
Deciding when to go away will dictate when you should book your holiday. If you have children and need to book during the school holidays, it’s wise to book your trip early. Not only will this mean you have more chance of getting your preferred dates, but prices won’t have increased with demand.
If, however, you’ve decided to go short-haul for a getaway, it can often be cheaper to book last minute, as hotels try and fill up their rooms for maximum occupancy. The more flexible you are, the more savings there are to be found.
Do things on your days off
Even if you haven’t booked to go away, make plans for your time off so you feel like you’ve made the most of your holiday entitlement. Co-ordinate your holiday with friends who you don’t get to visit often, and have a stay-cation with them, or explore your local area. It’s easy when you live somewhere to not appreciate all that it has to offer, so be a tourist for the day.
Whenever and however you choose to take your holiday entitlement, remember to take it and not feel guilty – you’ve earned the right for a break – and spend time with family and friends.