Travel industry staff don’t take enough holidays

More than a quarter of workers in the travel industry do not take their full annual leave, with employees blaming staff shortages and increasing job pressures for restricting their time off.

More than 30% of respondents to a survey by Personnel Today ‘s sister publication Travel Weekly said they take less holiday than they did five years ago, with 28% missing out on their full allocation.

Of those who fail to take all their holiday time, 32% said they lose five to seven days a year. A quarter said they lose out upwards of eight days, with 8% claiming they lose 16 or more days.

More than half of respondents find it harder to take full holiday entitlement than five years ago, while 67% said they are expected to work longer hours than five years ago.

One shop manager for a multiple travel agent chain described his stress levels as “sky high” and said he is  losing five to six days’ annual leave due to overwork and staff shortages.

Stress expert and Lancaster University professor Cary Cooper said the results reflected the workforce issue of “presenteeism”, where employees feel they cannot take holidays.

“It is part of the changing nature of work where people are insecure about their jobs, overloaded with work and worried that it will accumulate while they are away,” he said. “People need a break.”

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