British workers average two less annual days leave per year than their European neighbours according to a recent survey, the Daily Mail has reported.
The survey, carried out by on-line travel organisation, Expedia, took data from 24 countries and deducted that the average European worker benefits from 28 days annual leave. This compares with UK workers who, although entitled to an average of 26 days, typically only take 25 days. This could be why three quarters of UK workers polled said that they felt ‘very or somewhat’ deprived of time off.
However, when compared to the annual leave that workers from certain nations outside of Europe are entitled to, UK workers appear to be positively spoilt. A prime example is that of American workers, who averaged just 15 days of leave in the past year, and typically only took 14. But despite this seemingly meagre amount of time off, only 54 percent of Americans polled said that they felt ‘very or somewhat’ deprived.
Asian workers appear to come out worst from the poll results, with Thai workers only receiving 11 days holiday entitlement, and South Korean workers only taking seven of the 15 days that are available to them.
Andy Washington, managing director of Expedia.co.uk, was quoted in the Daily Mail, saying, ‘The vacation deprivation study looks at holiday habits across several different continents. While habits differ, the emotional impact of holiday does not.
‘Somewhere between 80 and 90 percent of people worldwide say that holidays make them feel happier, better rested, closer to their family, less stressed, and more relaxed.’
British Airways, a UK-based airline company, has announced the results of a survey that it has carried out into British workers’ ability to switch off from work while on holiday.
The survey has revealed that Brits abroad find it hard to leave the stresses of the workplace behind, and switch off for as little as four days during two weeks holiday. Three days was the minimum time that respondents to the survey said that it took them to wind down and forget about work. Then, once the holiday moves into its last few days, fears about the return to work resurface and raise anxiety levels. These fears can make holidaymakers resort to checking their work e-mails or even phoning work colleagues for an update.
BA learned that respondents to the survey were more relaxed about their jobs while on short breaks than on long ones, because there was less chance of work mounting up while they were away.
Managing director of BA Holidays, Claire Bentley, was quoted in the Daily Mail, saying, ‘Many believe that getting away from things for two weeks means you can really switch off – more so than if you just went for a long weekend away. But it seems for some the opposite is actually true.’
Survey findings confirmed that 20 percent of respondents worried about work while they were away on holiday, 25 percent worried about the amount of work that they would face on their return, more than 20 percent checked their e-mails at an Internet cafe, and 15 percent took a laptop with them to the beach or pool.
Taking holidays is seemingly becoming an afterthought with a growing number of British people, as they cram in as much as an extra week of unpaid work each year.
Travelodge, a UK based hotel company, has reported that one in ten British citizens are putting an extra week of unpaid labour into their work schedules, and with approximately one third of the British population working around 16 hours per week overtime, holidays are almost becoming a thing of past.
With the European economic downturn impacting on a volatile job market, the average worker in the UK is putting in 9.1 hours extra unpaid work every week to keep their bosses happy, resulting in around GBP5,276.18 in unpaid labour every year for those workers.
The study has also reported that 40 percent of workers have opted to regularly work at home in the evenings, while every third worker surveyed has put in extra hours at weekends to manage their existing workload.
Around 37 percent of these overworked Brits are regularly forsaking a long holiday for a series of one-night vacations, or ‘Nightcation’ breaks, according to the study.
Shakila Ahmed, a Travelodge spokesperson, said, ‘This year we have experienced a significant rise in just Saturday night bookings compared to previous years. To obtain a better understanding of the rationale behind this trend we commissioned research to investigate how the economic crisis is affecting the psychologies of British holidaymakers.
Our research findings have highlighted that Nightcation breaks are a growing trend amongst Britons as they are an easy to book, cost effective short break that help workaholic Britons recuperate and recharge for the week ahead.’