Tenth of Britons Have Had 'Sick Days' for Holidays Abroad

Posted by Sue Anderson, 24th Sep 2012

Our latest survey has revealed that a tenth of Britons have taken a 'sick day' from work in the past when they were actually fit and healthy on holiday abroad. The majority of these did so at the end of their holiday, to enable them to have longer off work without having to use up allocated annual leave.

Whilst many people use their allocated annual leave to their full advantage when it comes to holidays abroad, it would appear that there are a select few who fib their way to a longer break away from work. We decided to look into how common it was for people to lie about sick days when on holiday.

We carried out the study as part of ongoing research into the holiday habits and preferences of people around the UK. 1,128 British adults took part in the study, each of whom was in full time employment and had been on holiday in the past 12 months.

12% said that they had lied about a sick day to avoid using allocated annual leave

When asked 'Have you ever lied about a sick day at work in order to avoid using up allocated annual leave, but still get the length of holiday abroad you wanted?' 12% of those taking part said 'yes'. They were then asked how many days they had claimed they were sick for, when actually they weren't and were just on holiday.

The average Brit claimed they were sick for 2 extra days

The average answer stated by respondents was '2 days' and, when we questioned them further about when they had taken these sick days, the majority, 86%, said 'at the end' of their holiday abroad. When asked if they had been caught out by their employer at the time, 31% said 'yes', whilst 27% said 'no, but employer was suspicious'.

4% of respondents had lied to their employer and said they were sick for the duration of their holiday

A small percentage of respondents, 4%, said that they had claimed they were sick for the whole length of their holiday and simply kept the fact they were going away a secret from their employer.

In contrast, more than half, 51%, of the people taking part in the poll felt they were allocated enough annual leave by their employer.

Here at sunshine HQ, we definitely wouldn't recommend pulling a sickie just so you could go on holiday; it sets you up for so many ways of being caught out! Your boss might get pretty suspicious if you're off with man flu for a week and you come back with a great tan.

Being ill at the end of a holiday is pretty suspicious as well. You don't want to end up like the boy who cried wolf, otherwise you could earn a pretty bad reputation in the work place.
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