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This is how you can work less and travel more

This is how you can work less and travel more

The ultimate travel hack: by being savvy and planning your holidays to use your annual leave strategically, you can turn 17 days’ annual leave into 45 days of globetrotting.

Australia celebrates around 10 public holidays each year, depending on the day of the week that they fall on. If you strategically plan your annual leave to complement existing public holidays, you can use these days off work to make time for extended getaways. The world’s leading online travel insurer, InsureandGo, has analysed Australia’s 2019 public holidays state-by-state, and developed travel hacks that will help you make room for at least five getaways in 2019 – two domestic and three international – with only 17 days of annual leave in total.

Each year, state governments across Australia mark New Year’s Day, Australia Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Anzac Day, Queen’s Birthday, Labour Day, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day as public holidays. When New Year’s Day, Australia Day, Christmas Day and Boxing Day fall on a weekend, the public holiday is usually given on the Monday.

By thinking ahead and planning when to take annual leave, travellers will reap the benefits from taking a longer holiday with minimal time off work, rather than the hassle that comes with taking a few days off here and there. Here’s how you can make your love affair with travel even stronger, and take advantage of every opportunity possible to relax and explore new destinations.

The 10-day Australia Day travel hack

Are you looking to extend your January holidays without using all your annual leave? Next year, the Australia Day public holiday falls on Monday 28 January in all states. With January usually the quietest working month, it can be a good time to extend that long weekend to a longer break and head overseas. Aussies can enjoy a 10-day holiday by combining the public holiday with two weekends and five days of annual leave from, say, Friday 25 January to Friday 1 February inclusive. Why not head to Fiji, Hawaii or Bali?

The four-day weekend travel hack

With the Labour Day and Queen’s Birthday public holidays each falling on a Monday, you can turn those long weekends into four-day interstate holidays by simply taking the Friday off – often the least busy day of the week. Lucky residents in Victoria, the ACT, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania and NT can do this more often, as they have additional public holidays on a Monday or Friday.

The 10-day Easter holiday travel hack

Next year, the Easter long weekend will be from Friday 19 April to Monday 22 April in all states. Anzac Day follows two days after – on Thursday 25 April. With two public holidays occurring in one week, this is an opportunity to extend your holiday to 10 days – from Friday 19 April to Sunday 28 April inclusive – just by taking three days of annual leave. School holidays take place during this period in all states. Chances are, many people will be making the most of it. Time for another overseas trip?

The 18-day April to May holiday travel hack

Residents in Queensland and NT wanting to extend their 10-day Easter holiday can combine their Monday May 6 public holiday with the Easter holiday hack, to give them an extended holiday from Friday 19 April to Monday May 6. Eighteen days off to travel abroad, with just eight days of annual leave off work. Sounds like a plan.

The 17-day May to June holiday hack

ACT residents enjoy a public holiday on Monday 27 May (Reconciliation Day). With two public holidays in two weeks, and three weekends around those days, ACT workers can enjoy a 17-day holiday (Saturday 25 May to Monday 10 June inclusive) with just nine days of annual leave. That’s almost double the amount of time off for half the annual leave.

The mid-week public holiday hack

When public holidays fall mid-week, why not take annual leave on the days before or after, combine it with the weekend, and go on a mini getaway? For instance, Victorians can take Monday 4 November off work – right before Melbourne Cup Day – to enjoy a four-day weekend. Brisbane residents could take two days of annual leave before or after Ekka Day on 14 August, to enjoy a five-day holiday. For those that have more annual leave to spare, why not take all four days off to have a nine-day break in total.

The 2019 Christmas holiday hack

Australians can create a 17-day holiday – from Friday 20 December to Monday 6 January – by taking just seven days of annual leave. With Christmas Day falling on a Wednesday next year, why not take Monday 23rd and Tuesday 24th – and perhaps even on Friday the 20th – off work, when it’s very likely to be quiet at work. This holiday also takes advantage of Boxing Day falling on a Thursday and New Year’s Day the following Wednesday.

Significant holidays state-by-state:

  • Victoria has two additional public holidays – the Friday before the AFL Grand Final, and Melbourne Cup Day
  • ACT has Canberra Day and Reconciliation Day
  • WA celebrates Western Australia Day
  • NT has Picnic Day
  • Tasmania enjoys Easter Tuesday as a restricted holiday, then Recreation Day
  • SA has four additional public holidays – March Public Holiday, Proclamation Day, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.

To view the full list of Australian public holidays in 2019 by state, click here.

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This article was produced in partnership with InsureandGo. As a global brand, InsureandGo is the world’s leading online travel insurer. It provides travel cover to an average of 1.6 million people each year. Its parent company, MAPFRE Assistance, has the largest assistance network worldwide – providing 31,500 points of assistance around the world, and a 24-hour emergency medical assistance line. Since it was established in Australia in 2012, InsureandGo has covered 1.3 million Australian travellers. InsureandGo is a subsidiary of MAPFRE Assistance, which operates in 51 countries.