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A fifth of employees would ‘sell’ back annual leave

03 December 2015
  • A fifth of employees would take an average 7 days less holiday in return for a pay rise;
  • 20% of employees would take a pay cut to buy an average of 11 days more holiday;
  • 60% of workers surveyed would keep their holiday/pay arrangements the same.

A new survey reveals that, given the opportunity, a fifth of employees would ‘sell’ back some of their holiday entitlement.  On average, these employees would be prepared to forgo 7 days of their annual leave in return for a higher salary.

The survey also found that another 20% of employees would like to ‘buy’ on average 11 extra days’ holiday by taking a pay cut.  Just over a fifth (21%) of those wanting more holiday said they would like to ‘buy’ 16 or more days’ additional leave.

However, 60% of workers were happy to keep their holiday/pay arrangements the same.

Commissioned by leading comparison website, Gocompare.com, the survey also asked self-employed workers about their holiday time.  The survey found that:

  • 35% felt that they had less time off being self-employed than when they were employed;
  • 26% would like to take more time off but couldn’t afford to do so;
  • 21% said they give themselves as much time as they like.

When asked about amount of annual leave self-employed people allow themselves, 18% said they have more than 4 weeks off a year, 11% take around 3 to 4 weeks’ holiday, 13% take around a fortnight off while 4% take no more than a week away from work.

The survey also asked respondents which was more important to them - time or money.  Most (68%) people valued time over money (22%).

A large proportion (76%) of those surveyed said that they didn’t have the time to do all the things they wanted to do.  Of these people, 22% said they have to work long hours to afford to live, while a quarter said that looking after their home and family left them with little time to do much else.

Commenting on the research, Ella Hastings from Gocompare.com said, “For many of us, finding the right work-life balance can be a challenge – whether that’s spending too much time at work or looking after the home and loved ones.  Time away from work and proper rest are important, so working more and having fewer holidays is unlikely to be a long term recipe for success for most people.

“The busier we get, the harder it can be to keep a firm hand on our finances.  However, budgeting effectively, keeping an eye on outgoings and managing your personal finances more proactively can be valuable first steps towards helping to improve your overall financial position.

“Taking a few minutes to check and see if you could save money on your outgoings may well help take some pressure off the household budget. We know from our own research** that 18% have never shopped around and switched the most common financial products including car insurance, energy companies, mobile phone contracts or bank accounts.”

- ENDS -

Notes to editors:

*On 5 October 2015, Bilendi conducted an online survey among 2,000 randomly selected British adults who are Maximiles UK panelists and homeowners.  The margin of error – which measures sampling variability – is +/-2.2%.  The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and regional data to ensure samples representative of the entire adult population of the United Kingdom.  Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

**On 17 March 2015, Bilendi conducted an online survey among 2005 randomly selected British adults who are Maximiles UK panelists.  The margin of error-which measures sampling variability-is +/- 2.2%. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and regional data to ensure samples representative of the entire adult population of United Kingdom. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.