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How To Make The Most Out Of Your Annual Leave!

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I am a big advocate of the fact that it is possible to travel and go on a lot of trips when you have a Full-Time job using your annual leave! It’s good to quit your job to travel the world at least once in your life (and more than once if that’s what you want to do, I’ve done it quite a few times!) but unfortunately, it’s not realistic to always do this and you may not even want to!

Making The Most Out Of Annual Leave

2017 for me, pretty much proved my own point! The year started off slow but by the end of the year I had been on 13 trips in total whilst working a full-time job all year using 25 days Annual Leave plus bank holidays, and that doesn’t even include the many day trips I did to places in the UK too!

My situation was definitely helped by the fact that I live in London meaning I have access to 5 airports so I have many flight options and the fact that my blog has really taken off in the last year meaning quite a few of the trips I did were press trips which helped me financially.

However with that being said, if you’ve ever spoken to an Aussie, Kiwi, or Canadian etc ex-pat living in London you’ll know that they love to make use of how close Europe is and they go away all the time whilst working a full-time job so you don’t have to have a travel blog to travel a lot!

Tips for Planning Annual Leave

First off, here are my top tips for making the most of your annual leave:

Use your bank holiday weekends to go away, yes it might be a bit more expensive and busier but it really enhances your opportunities for time off!

Look out for times when the bank holidays fall close together (specifically Easter and the 1st May bank holiday in the UK). Often you can get 2-3 weeks off with 2-3 of those days being bank holidays meaning less days taken from your AL allocation.

Make the most of your weekends! As you’ll see below I’ve done a lot of trips this year over a weekend with no AL taken!

Keep your trips short and sweet so you don’t use a lot of AL in one go – 2x 1-week trips and multiple weekend & long weekend trips are the way to go!

Visit places with a shorter travel time meaning you extend the time in your destination and it means you can go after work to save a day off travelling there. You’ll notice below that I only went to European destinations in 2017, plus Egypt.

Related Post: How to Plan, Book and Have a European City Break on a Budget!

I’m also a big advocate of resting and enjoying downtime but unless you really need to don’t use your AL for a day at home or for an appointment. Work this around your day at work.

Unless you’re going away over Christmas, don’t take annual leave apart from the Bank Holiday days!

Above all – travel is costly, time-consuming and often tiring. It’s totally worth it but you need to make travel your priority in order to travel a lot!

How I Used My Annual Leave to Maximise My Travels!

Here are the trips I did in 2017 along with how long I went for and what Annual Leave I took to hopefully help you plan your trips this year and to show you that you can travel with a full-time job!

(P.S each pink link below will take you onto my blog posts from that trip in case you want to visit too!)

Dublin – January – 3 Day trip

1 Day AL

Egypt – April – 9 Day Trip

5 Days AL & 1 Bank Holiday Day

Georgia – May – 7 Day Trip

5 Days AL

Zaragoza, Spain – June – 4 Day Trip

2 Days AL

Wales – July – 5 Day Trip

3 Days AL

Ireland – August – 3 Day Trip

No AL, 1 Bank Holiday Day

Berlin – September – 3 Day Trip

1 Day AL

Jersey – September – Friday Evening – Sunday


Belgrade, Serbia – November – 2 Day Trip

1 Day AL

The Netherlands – November – 4 Day Trip

2 Days AL

Riga, Latvia – December – 3 Day Trip

1 Day AL

Basel, Switzerland – December – 3 Day Trip

2 Days AL

Plus – 1x Day to attend a Travel Conference & 2x Rest Day (which was well needed!)

= 25 Annual Leave Days!

Well, there you have it! Here’s to another awesome year of travel! 


Tuesday 9th of October 2018

I haven't been to that many places in my lifetime, let alone in a year! Color me impressed!

Marty Deemst

Sunday 7th of October 2018

Thanks for sharing this helpful information. You are inspiring me for traveling. I’m sure most people can take notes from this article. One thing most people lack experience while traveling. I have a couple of young friends that are going to get travel soon. Well, this post gives me some good ideas for our travel.


Sunday 7th of October 2018

Glad you liked it :)


Tuesday 18th of September 2018

Wow! Such awesome vital information in regard to traveling, I love traveling in different places, I remember there were awesome days when I’d just travel for the fun of it and it was fantastic, I wonder where the spark went? I glad to have a blog to accompany me in my quest.


Tuesday 18th of September 2018

I'm glad you do too, good luck and hope the spark comes back :)


Monday 17th of September 2018

Bank holiday trips are the only way to make sure you don't use up all of your annual leave on one destination!


Tuesday 18th of September 2018

So true! The prices are higher but if that's how you manage to fit in more trips between work then it's worth it I think! :)

mayuri patel

Tuesday 20th of February 2018

Lovely post .I also travel with full time job can relate to


Thursday 22nd of February 2018

Thats so good to hear! Thank you for reading!


Tuesday 20th of February 2018

I’m glad you can relate!! Thank you for reading and commenting!