British Airways Holidays has found that 50 per cent of Brits don’t take all the vacation days they are entitled to. In response, it has launched a campaign urging people to “take holidays seriously”. Rose Dykins reports

A survey commissioned by British Airways Holidays with YouGov Plc reveals 50 per cent of UK working adults do not take their full annual leave allocation.

More than 4,200 adults aged 18 and over (2,410 of whom are UK working adults) were surveyed in October 2022. The findings reveal that more than a third of working Brits (36 per cent) who did not take their full annual leave said it was because they “just didn’t get around to it”.

Switching off from work while on holiday was also highlighted as a problem for many respondents, with 42 per cent saying they have felt stressed about work while on holiday.

Furthermore, 46 per cent said they have had to work during their annual leave, and 48 per cent have checked work emails whilst away. More than a third (39 per cent) said they have responded to work email whilst on annual leave.

This winter, the strain of the cost-of-living crisis and looming recession is likely to be impacting some people’s plans for their annual leave 2023. Those facing financial insecurity may be finding it hard to justify taking time off for a holiday.

However, British Airways Holidays has referred to a 40-year study from the European Society of Cardiology, which reveals that taking a holiday could help people live longer.

The study suggests men who took more than three weeks of leave per year were 63 per cent more likely to live longer than those who took three weeks or less.

Meanwhile, the British Airways Holidays survey with YouGov also highlighted that almost 79 per cent of those surveyed agreed taking a break is good for their mental health.

In line with the survey results, British Airways Holidays has launched a multimedia campaign centred around the message that holidays should be taken seriously.

The campaign urges people to prioritise time away for their own wellbeing and draws attention to the advantages of using up their annual leave by booking a trip with British Airways Holidays. These include the company’s competitive pricing, its 24-hour helpline, its selected hotels, and its 23kg of baggage allowance per person.

“I am astounded by the results of our survey,” commented Claire Bentley, managing director of British Airways Holidays. “It’s clear that taking a break is vital for our mental and physical wellbeing, and it’s worrying that too many people feel unable to do so.

“While our new brand campaign conveys this in a comical fashion, the message behind it is a serious one. Here at British Airways Holidays we take holidays as seriously as our customers do, and offer a number of benefits to take the stress out of travel, so they can maximise their switch off time.”