A Nation Divided on ‘Unlimited Holiday’

For many, 'unlimited holiday' sounds like a dream, but in actuality it is not so popular: 65% of workers do not think their employer should offer unlimited holiday. We surveyed 1,000 adults in the UK to gain insight into their thoughts on the matter.

In 2004, Netflix became the first company to offer their employees unlimited holiday. This means staff can take as much time off as they like, when they like - no restrictions.

Holiday photo of hat and sunglasses by an outdoor swimming pool

Since Netflix's announcement, many companies have followed suit. In 2014, Richard Branson offered his version of 'unlimited holiday' that allows staff at Virgin to take as much time off as they want. The only caveat being they assume you will only take time off if you're a hundred percent sure it's a good time to go.

From a business perspective, allowing staff unlimited time away from work is counter-intuitive. Company policies today, however, focus on improving staff wellbeing and providing flexible working conditions.

1. Would you accept a job offer because your employer offered unlimited holiday?

Chart representing unlimited holiday question

We found 51% of respondents would be more likely to accept a job because of unlimited holiday and the younger workforce aged 18-24 picked ‘yes’ more than any other age group. Also, there was a slightly higher proportion of women who answered ‘yes’ than men.

2. Do you think your employer should offer unlimited holiday?

Chart representing unlimited holiday question

From an employee’s perspective, the freedom to take holiday at will would surely prove popular. However, 64.7% of respondents do not think their employer should offer unlimited holiday, and nearly 70% of women did not want unlimited holiday in their workplace versus 60.7% of men.

Does this mean that, as good as it may initially sound, workers aren’t as enthralled with the idea of unlimited holiday as we might expect? The results suggest so.

3. Would you trade longer working hours for unlimited holiday?

Chart representing unlimited holiday question

Our final question investigated if workers would trade longer working hours for unlimited holiday. Similar to our first question, the results were almost an even split and a slight majority (52%) would exchange more time in the working day for more time away in return.

Want to find out more about our Employers' Liability Insurance?

More details