Mind & Body

Need a holiday? How to turn 18 days of annual leave into 48 days

Hands up if you’re in desperate need of a holiday? *everyone raises hands*. With 2020 feeling like a sprint to the finish, hack your way to more than doubling your annual leave next year. 

It’s safe to say we’re all feeling like we need a holiday more than ever. Despite spending most of our year at home due to the pandemic, stress and uncertainty from the current state of the world probably have drained a lot of us.

If you’re in need of a break and not feeling like the 20 days your work offers is enough, here’s how to get the most out of your annual leave with some clever planning around various public holidays. And if you adhere to the plan below, you’ll get to the end of 2020 with two days of leave left to spare.

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Christmas 2020

This year, the Chrissie-related public holidays fall in such a way that you can secure 10 days off by only using three days of leave. Here are the days you need to take off in italics.

  • Friday, December 25 CHRISTMAS DAY – public holiday
  • Saturday, December 26 BOXING DAY
  • Sunday, December 27
  • Monday, December 28 BOXING DAY PUBLIC HOLIDAY – public holiday
  • Tuesday, December 29 Annual leave
  • Wednesday, December 30 Annual leave
  • Thursday, December 31 Annual leave
  • Friday, January 1 NEW YEAR’S DAY – public holiday
  • Saturday, January 2
  • Sunday, January 3

Australia Day

Australia Day, January 26, is on a Tuesday in 2021. By taking just four days off work either side of Australia Day, you can get a nine-day break in return. Here’s how the week can plan out, with suggested annual leave days in italics.

  • Saturday, January 23
  • Sunday, January 24
  • Monday, January 25 – Annual leave
  • Tuesday, January 26 AUSTRALIA DAY – public holiday
  • Wednesday, January 27 Annual leave
  • Thursday, January 28 Annual leave
  • Friday, January 29 Annual leave
  • Saturday, January 30
  • Sunday, January 31


Falling on Sunday April 4, Easter is a great opportunity to take a few days off for maximum reward: four days leave for a week and a half off. Apply for the dates in italics.

  • Friday, April 2 GOOD FRIDAY public holiday
  • Saturday, April 3
  • Sunday, April 4, EASTER SUNDAY public holiday
  • Monday, April 5 – EASTER MONDAY public holiday
  • Tuesday, April 6 – Annual leave (lucky ducks in Tassie get this as a public holiday)
  • Wednesday, April 7 – Annual leave
  • Thursday, April 8 – Annual leave
  • Friday, April 9 – Annual leave
  • Saturday, April 10
  • Sunday, April 11

Anzac Day

Apologies to those in Victoria, NSW, and Tasmania, but because Anzac Day falls on a Sunday this year, April 25, the Monday after is not a public holiday.

But for all other states and territories with Monday the 26th off, you can book four days of annual leave and get a whopping nine in return.

  • Saturday, April 24
  • Sunday, April 25 ANZAC DAY
  • Monday, April 26 – Public holiday
  • Tuesday, April 27 Annual leave
  • Wednesday, April 28 Annual leave
  • Thursday, April 29 Annual leave
  • Friday, April 30 Annual leave
  • Saturday, May 1
  • Sunday, May 2

Christmas 2021

Get 10 days off in a row with only three days of annual leave for the festive season next year. Hopefully, by this time next year, the worst of COVID will be over so we can go on living our lives again.

  • Saturday, December 25 Christmas Day
  • Sunday, December 26 Boxing Day
  • Tuesday, December 28, BOXING DAY PUBLIC HOLIDAY
  • Wednesday, December 29 – Annual leave
  • Thursday, December 30 – Annual leave
  • Friday, December 31 – Annual leave
  • Saturday, January 1, 2022 NEW YEAR’S DAY
  • Sunday, January 2