Our recent survey revealed that more than half of Australians worked through the summer break, taking only public holidays to refresh before the New Year.
Public holidays over the Christmas and New Year period offer workers the opportunity to maximise time off without significantly reducing accrued annual leave. Despite this, most people who took time off did so only due to forced office closures and very few made the trip overseas.
Queenslanders were most able to take a break with 60% extending their leave beyond public holidays compared to SA and ACT with 40% and 22% respectively.
Mammoth price hikes over the summer period and the weak AUD were among the reasons Australians chose to save their leave for another time of year.
While some businesses experience a lull and shut down over the Christmas and New Year period (some well into January), many others face their busiest time of the year and require all hands on deck. More than 50% of those who did not take a break were unable to get time off work for this reason – many of whom work in the healthcare/nursing and customer service industries which often need to run year-round.
Raife Watson says “what is clear is that the traditional view that Australia shuts down over the Christmas period is very much a myth, with business as usual for many industries.”
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