More than half of Britain’s schools are happy to let parents take their children away during term-time according to a recent survey by holiday rentals specialist, Owners Direct. However, despite results showing that people value their holiday time more than ever due to work overload, very few are taking advantage of their school’s relaxed attitude over the Easter and Royal Wedding break.
With just under half of schools allowing up to two weeks off during term-time, it is surprising that very few parents (just 1.1 per cent) are planning to take their children away on the two or three days of term time between Easter and the Royal wedding.
Angela Southall, Marketing Manager for Owners Direct said: “We were surprised about these findings. Many parents place significant importance on their children’s education and are instead happy to pay a premium to go away in designated holidays”.
Just seven per cent admit they are brave enough to take annual term-time holidays. However, 42 per cent will book a term-time break occasionally.
One parent commented: “So long as it doesn’t clash with exams, it’s usually ok”, whilst another said: “it is very much at the head’s discretion”.
Of those who do utilise their schools’ relaxed guidelines regarding holiday time, almost 80 per cent of respondents in the survey undertaken in April this year take children out of school to save money, with 14 per cent citing better flight options and 10 per cent for a quieter time.
Employers, it seems are more than happy to accommodate staff’s needs when it comes to taking a holiday. Almost 74 per cent are flexible on chosen dates, with only teachers suffering from not being able to go on holiday during term time.
In today’s cash-strapped times, people are valuing their holidays more than ever – over 80 per cent take up to three holidays per year. And most people would be prepared to forgo salary for extra holiday, whilst the majority take their full holiday entitlement every year because of ‘use it or lose it’ rules. Over 80 per cent are taking the same amount or more holidays than usual in 2011.
Many of those surveyed said that getting away from work, day to day stress and financial worries was really important to them.
Most felt that life was simply too short not to enjoy it and that the work, work, work culture left them desperate for a break.
Despite the record number of holidays being taken, people are always looking for ways to save money with over 70 per cent opting for a self-catering as a cheaper alternative. Other ways wily holidaymakers are saving include searching the internet for deals, doing a house swap or gramping (going away with extended family) or groups of friends.
Favourite countries include the UK, France, Spain, Italy, with USA coming a close second after Europe. Many stated that deciding where to go was the hardest aspect of booking a holiday!
Over 60 per cent think taking a holiday away from work has become more important than ever over the last three years. Parents say what their children most love about going on holiday is being on or near water, whether it be the pool or the beach.
And the one thing they could not possibly leave behind? Over half cannot do without a good holiday read by the beach or pool. Other essentials include iPods, mobile phones and computer games. So we never completely switch off, do we!