Maximise Your Annual Leave in 2024 | Main Region | UB

Our annual leave hacks – the best time to take a holiday in 2024

a group of friends
Everyone needs a break from work and with some preparation, you can maximise your annual leave in 2024 and more than double your paid time off.  
We look at how to achieve the maximum possible downtime by taking advantage of public holidays and weekends. With these annual leave hacks for 2024, you’ll have more time to recharge and be ready to perform at your best when at work. 

Annual leave and public holidays

Four weeks of paid annual leave is the standard offering for businesses in Australia, but it can feel like it disappears quickly. To extend the feeling of being on holidays, align the time your take off with weekends and public holidays. By strategically approaching your standard 20 days of annual leave, you’ll unlock more time off. What’s more, by cleverly positioning your annual leave dates adjacent to Australian public holidays, you’ll double your time off without resorting to having to take unpaid leave. 
Here are some of the best dates to book time off in 2024. 

Maximise your annual leave 2024

Christmas 2023 and New Year’s 2024 – book three days and get 11

This year, Christmas day is on a Monday. The Boxing Day public holiday is on Tuesday, with the New Year’s Day public holiday falling on Monday, 1 January 2024 and Day after New Year’s Day on Tuesday, 2 January 2024. 
Book three days annual leave: Take three days’ annual leave on Wednesday, 27 December, Thursday, 28 December and Friday, 29 December before New Year's Eve. 
Your 11-day break: You’ll enjoy a 11-day break, from Saturday, 23 December 2023 through to Tuesday, 2 January 2024. 

Waitangi Day 2024 – book one days and get four

In 2024, Waitangi Day falls on Tuesday, 6 February.  
Book one day of annual leave: Take an extra day of annual leave on Monday 5 February. 
Your four-day break: For the cost of one day of annual leave, you’ll get an extra-long weekend from 3-6 February.  

Easter 2024 – book four days and get ten

In 2024, Good Friday falls on 29 March, with Easter Monday following on 1 April. 
Book four days annual leave: Take annual leave from 2-5 April. 
Your 10-day break: You’ll enjoy a 10-day break from Friday, 29 March through to Sunday, 7 April. 

Anzac Day 2024 – book four days and get nine

ANZAC Day takes place on 25 April, which in 2024 will fall on a Thursday.  
Book four days annual leave: Book annual leave from 22-24 April as well as on Friday, 26 April.  
Your nine-day break: This gives you a nine-day holiday from 20-28 April.  

Kings’s Birthday 2024 – book one day and get four

In 2024 the King's Birthday public holiday falls on Monday 3 June. 
Get a four or nine-day break: You can go about this in two ways, depending on how much annual leave you have at this point. Take annual leave out for the four days after the Monday to get nine total days, or just take Friday 31 May to give yourself a four-day weekend.  

Matariki 2024 – book one day and get four

Matariki falls on Friday 28 June for a three-day weekend.   
Book one day of annual leave: Book annual leave on 1 July. 
Your four-day break: This gives you a total of four days off from 28 June to 1 July. 

Labour Day 2024 – book one day and get four

Labour Day falls on Monday 28 October and provides a long weekend before the holiday period. 
Book one day of annual leave: Book annual leave on 25 October. 
Your four-day break: This will give you an extra-long weekend from 25 October to 28 October.  

Christmas 2024 and New Year’s 2025 – book three days and get ten

Christmas Day falls on a Wednesday in 2024 with the Boxing Day public holiday following on Thursday, 26 December. The New Year’s Day public holiday falls on Wednesday, 1 January 2025 with the Day after New Year’s Day on Thursday, 2 January 2025.  
Book six days annual leave: Take two days’ annual leave from 23-24 December, one on 27 December, 30-31 December and then 3 January. 
Your 16-day break: This will bring your total days off to a massive 16, letting you enjoy an extended break over the summer, from Saturday, 21 December through your return to work on Sunday, 5 January. 

What annual leave am I entitled to and how much annual leave can I accrue?

Annual leave is a longstanding entitlement in Australian workplaces. In Australia, annual leave entitlements are part of Australia’s National Employment Standards.
Annual leave is a longstanding entitlement in New Zealand workplaces. In New Zealand, according to the New Zealand Government, employees are entitled to at least four weeks’ paid annual leave per year if they work regular full-time hours, and the equivalent for part-time hours.
In New Zealand, the first official right to annual leave for all citizens dates back to the 1940s. The Annual Holidays Act 1944 granted employees two weeks’ paid holiday entitlement, and this paid period was stretched to three weeks in 1974, before reaching four in 2007.

Why take annual leave, exactly?

Many professionals tend to save up their annual leave. Perhaps you, too, have several days or weeks of annual leave accrued. But it’s important to remember that taking regular, consistent breaks throughout the year helps manage your overall stress levels and can mean you avoid succumbing to burnout.  
The World Health Organisation recognises burnout as an ‘occupational phenomenon’. Burnout syndrome, it states, is the result of chronic workplace stress unsuccessfully managed. Symptoms include: 
  • Feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion
  • Mental distance from work
  • More negative feelings or cynicism regarding one’s job
  • Decreased professional efficacy
It’s well-known that it takes anyone a couple of days to even start to unwind during holiday time. So maximising your annual leave can help avoid burnout. You can read more tips on how to avoid burnout here.  

Your annual leave plan 2024

With the above annual leave plan in place, you’ll enjoy some proper downtime. No matter how you like to unwind, by making the most of your annual leave, the potential to rest, relax and reset looks very promising. 
Public Holiday Book leave on these days Number of total days off
Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year’s 23/24 27-29 December 11
Waitangi Day 5 February 4
Easter 2-5 April 10
ANZAC Day 22-24 April, 26 April 9
King’s Birthday 31 May 9
Matariki 1 July 4
Labour Day 25 October 4
Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year’s 24/25 23-24 December, 27 December, 30-31 December 16

HaysSearchEntityForm Portlet