A Sharp Increase in Workers Plan to Travel on Holiday This Year, Finds CareerBuilder.co.uk Survey

LONDON, 27 May, 2014 – Expect to see more empty desks around the UK this summer. An improving economy, climbing temperatures and longer days have more workers finding opportunities to get away from the office and enjoy a holiday. Most full time workers in the UK (67 per cent) say they plan to take time away from work this season, and 63 per cent will use the time to take a trip, up from 52 per cent last year.

The nationwide survey found that taking a holiday is slightly more feasible for some workers as 23 per cent claim to not be able to afford a holiday, down from last year (24 per cent). However, an additional 10 per cent say that while they can afford a take holiday, they still have no plans to take one.

“Taking time away from work not only improves work-life balance, but also overall productivity,” said Scott Helmes, Managing Director of CareerBuilder UK. “Sixty per cent of employees say they feel moderately or highly stressed in their jobs. Employee stress can be a real problem, especially with employees taking on expanded responsibilities and working more hours over the last few years. Getting out of the office – traveling or staying home -- can alleviate some stress, improve worker satisfaction, and even offer new perspectives on ongoing projects.”

The survey reveals several other trends and topics of note:

  • Technology makes getting away harder – In today’s endlessly connected world of mobile devices, unplugging for a holiday can prove challenging. One in five workers (20 per cent) contact work during their holiday, 17 per cent say they feel expected to check their email while on holiday, and 8 percent feel expected to check their voicemail.

  • Bosses keeping tabs – Nearly a third of managers (28 per cent) say they expect their employees to check in with work while on holiday, although most say only if the employee is involved in a big project or major issue going on with the company (20 per cent). One in ten (10 per cent) employees say they’ve lied to their boss about being out of reach in order to avoid being contacted while on holiday.

  • Giving up days off – Eighteen per cent of workers reported they gave up holiday days last year because they didn’t have time to use them. Nine per cent lost four or more days off last year.

  • Missing out on family time – Nineteen per cent of workers say that at one point they’ve had to work while their family went on holiday without them.

  • Helmes also suggests the following tips to make the most of your time off:

    Plan for your absence – Apart from scheduling flights and booking rooms, workers planning to travel this summer should be sure to coordinate with their employers and coworkers before the trip to make sure day-to-day responsibilities are taken care of. A little planning can go a long way in terms of helping you relax and not worry about the office while you’re away.

    Cut the cord while on holiday - Ten percent of workers say they feel guilty that they’re not at work while on holiday, and 17 percent feel expected to check their email. Paid time off should be enjoyed. Work with your manager to set up an alternate means of contacting you in the case of a legitimate work emergency so that you don’t feel obligated to stay connected.

    Schedule a decompression day – After an out of town holiday, the transition back to the office can be a bit abrupt. If you’re planning trip, consider spending a day at home before coming back to work to catch up on emails and prepare for the upcoming return in a lower pressure environment.

    Survey Methodology
    There were 1000 people aged 18-70 from the UK involved in our survey.

    About CareerBuilder.co.uk
    CareerBuilder UK is one of the most visited online job sites in the United Kingdom. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc (NYSE: GCI), Tribune Company, and The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), CareerBuilder.co.uk powers the career centres for hundreds of UK sites that reach national, local, industry and niche audiences. For more information about CareerBuilder products and services, visit http://www.careerbuilder.co.uk.

    CareerBuilder.co.uk Media Contacts
    For all media inquiries and interview requests, contact:

    Jennifer Grasz
    (P) +1 773-527-1164
    (E) jennifer.grasz@careerbuilder.com