Here in Australia, we have a pretty great quality of life. Not only do we live amongst some of the world’s most breathtaking scenery and have a higher-than-average minimum wage, but we also get a decent amount of annual leave. All full-time workers are guaranteed a minimum of 4 weeks annual leave, on top of sick and personal leave. Which is exactly what means new research from booking.com all the more shocking. The study revealed that the equivalent of 2.4 million full-time working Australians have gone without taking a holiday for more than a year!
The research showed that only 31% of Australians use all of their annual leave days each year. Breaking it down by state, data revealed that South Australians are the nation’s biggest workaholics, with only 19% using all of their annual leave and over a third going without leave for 7-12 months. On the other hand, NSW and Victoria are the states most likely to take a well-earned break with 36% and 34% respectively stating they always use their annual leave allocation. Interestingly, Baby Boomers (people born between 1954 and 1964) were found to have the longest periods without annual leave (up to 2 years), which is double the amount of time Gen X and Millennials are willing to wait for a break. What can we say, we love to travel!
The study also showed that a lack of travel is affecting our national health, with 86% experiencing burnout as a result of not taking enough leave. The common consequences mentioned by participants included a loss of concentration, working more slowly than usual, taking one or more sick days, eating unhealthy foods and drinking too much coffee in an attempt to stay focused.
There’s no doubt that taking regular holidays is critical for both your physical and mental health. Not only is it an opportunity to switch off and relax, it gives you something to look forward to. Not only that, but regularly changing up your scenery and experiencing different cultures has actually been shown to make you more creative and productive at work.
The good news is, you don’t have to take an epic, months-long vacay to reap the benefits. In fact, taking more regular mini holidays can be just as, if not more so, effective! You can check out the most affordable place in Australia to head for a mini getaway here.