Hotels.com Research Finds Brits Spend A Quarter Of A Billion Hours A Year Working On Holiday
on: July 22, 2009, 7:48 am
New research from Hotels.com has revealed that relaxing on
holiday should be easy, but more than half of British travellers (55%)
find it hard to switch off from work and rely on their laptops and
Blackberries to keep in contact with the office.
Hotels.com research* has revealed that in tough economic times, people are finding
it harder than ever to switch off, and want to feel they are at work even when they
are not. On a one week break, Brits now spend the equivalent of one day in the
office (seven hours on average) which means that just under a quarter of a billion
hours are lost each year by travellers working when they are supposed to be relaxing
The new research established that there are three types of holiday workers. Of those
who admit to taking time out of their holidays to work, 26% are emergency browsers -
checking in only to deal with urgent issues; another 24% are sun lounger surfers who
check in with the office at least every other day; and 35% are compulsive mailers
who feel the need to be in constant contact with the office, logging on at least
once a day or more.
Hotels.com found that 60% of those who work on holiday
are doing so for reasons relating to their job security. While 28% felt that beach
emailing "saved time when back in the office" and 12% wanted to ensure their
colleagues were coping without them. The rest admitted it had more to do with job
security, citing reasons such as "I want the office to see that I'm passionate
about my job".
According to The Work Foundation***, 'holiday guilt' can be explained by the UK's
long-hours culture which gives rise to insecurity and 'presenteeism'. It is
perceived that being seen and heard will lead to promotion and job safety, whereas
those away from the office might miss out. Checking in with the office and not
trusting others to look after things in their absence can be seen as an effort to
show that they are indispensable.
Alison Couper, Communications Director for Hotels.com, said: ''Holidays are meant
to be a time to relax and switch off from work. Designating a "blackberry hour",
agreed with your partner, is one way of avoiding arguments but the ideal solution is
to leave the office behind you and make the most of your holiday."
- ENDS -
Note to editors:
*Research conducted amongst 2,167 travellers from the UK, Ireland, France, Spain,
Germany, Norway, Sweden and Denmark in June/July 2009.
** Office of National Statistics Social Trends Report - Britons make 69.5 million
trips abroad each year. Hotels.com research found that 55% of Britons work when on
holiday, spending an average of seven hours working during the average week long
trip, making the number of hours worked on holiday 267,575,000 hours per year.
***Money, Tickets, Passport, Blackberry?? The Work Foundation, August 2005
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booking. Hotels.com won the Gold Award for best hotel booking site in Webuser
magazine in February 2009.
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