11 reasons you should book time off work this summer, even if you can’t travel abroad

woman relaxing in hammock
16:07pm, Thu 15 Jul 2021
CBAD8A00-D2B9-4E0E-ADDF-D0366C357A34 Created with sketchtool. E9A4AA46-7DC3-48B8-9CE2-D75274FB8967 Created with sketchtool. 65CCAE04-4748-4D0F-8696-A91D8EB3E7DC Created with sketchtool.

Summer is usually dubbed ‘holiday season’, but new research shows nearly a third of UK adults (28%) haven’t taken any annual leave in the whole of 2021, with 24% of those respondents saying they’re waiting for coronavirus restrictions to ease.

The survey, which coincides with a competition to win a year’s free rail travel, suggests people are prioritising overseas trips when it comes to taking time off work, but travel abroad isn’t the only reason you should consider booking time off this summer…

1. It’s a chance for a staycation

A huge pandemic trend, staycations are more popular than ever, but don’t believe rumours that every hotel room, cottage and Airbnb is booked up from now until Christmas. You can still find great options in the UK and Ireland, you just might need to be a bit more flexible in terms of dates or locations…

2. You could get to enjoy the sunUnless you happen to live in a Bermuda Triangle-esque bubble where the weather’s been wonderful, spring and early summer were a bit of a washout. Now, however, things are hotting up, so you could spend a week catching some rays in the garden, local park or lido.

3. Day trips are ace

Instead of a staycation away from home, why not venture out to some favourite country or seaside spots on day trips? It can be fun to play tourist for the day and explore places in your local area that you’ve never got round to visiting.

4. It’s time to recharge your batteries

Man is relaxing on the garden with his dog

Sometimes, you don’t realise how stressed you are at work until you slow down for a minute. Even if all you do is lounge around at home and catch up on much-needed sleep, a break from work will help you de-stress and decompress.

5. Use it to reconnect with loved ones

After more than a year of lockdown restrictions, it’s no wonder if our relationships with friends and family have suffered. Time off work means time for socialising, playing with the kids or travelling farther afield to meet up with pals we haven’t seen for a while.

6. Summer books need reading

Love getting lost in a good book? Now’s the time of year when publishers release a glut of engrossing page-turners in the hope they’ll become bestsellers. Some of this year’s most hyped reads include While Justice Sleeps by Stacey Abrams, The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris, and Sorrow And Bliss by Meg Mason.

7. The Olympics start soon!

Delayed by a year, the Tokyo Olympics are kicking off on July 23, giving us just over a fortnight of athletic action to spectate from the comfort of our own living rooms.

8. You can do some serious gardening

If you’re lucky enough to have a garden or some outdoor space, give it a summertime makeover. By adding new plants or furniture you’ll be more inclined to enjoy al fresco meals or a spot of sunbathing.

9. You’ll have time for home improvements

Got a DIY project you’ve been wanting to get stuck into for a while? Whether it’s a few home improvements or a creative upcycling idea, doing it while you’re off work gives you the time to plan it properly and get it right.

10. It’s an excuse to indulge in beauty treatments

If you’re not splashing out on flights abroad, you might like to treat yourself to a salon or spa visit. Book with a friend and enjoy a luxurious mani-pedi while you catch up or enjoy a bit of ‘me’ time with a full-body massage

11. Tick off all the restaurants you’ve been desperate to visit

You don’t have to jet off overseas to enjoy incredible international cuisine. Travel with your taste buds by trying out unusual restaurants or meal kits at home. You never know, you might find inspiration for your next holiday destination.

Sign up to our newsletter