You Can Cop Up To 58 Days Off For Just 20 Days Of Annual Leave In 2022

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Fancy yourself a bit of a holiday-hacking king? Every time January rolls around, the more tactical full-time workers amongst us start to think about how they can maximise their standard 20 days of annual leave. In 2019, Contiki did the quick math to find out you could stretch your allocated leave to a total of 42 days, which was a revelation for those who wanted to spend as much time as possible overseas without undershooting their work obligations. While international travel is still in a sort of limbo for most, the team at Finder has one-upped the idea of the annual leave hack, revealing that if you play your cards exactly right (and you live in certain Australian states) you could turn 20 days of annual leave into potentially 58 days… without taking a single day of unpaid leave.

Of course, this differs by state. If you live in ACT, Victoria, or Tasmania, your bag of leisure time can total 58 days. Anyone living in Western Australia, Northern Territory, or South Australia can look to a total of 55 days. NSW residents get the least potential, with 52 days off in total.

Obviously, you’ll just need to be exacting about it, while also getting in before any of your other colleagues so that those public holidays and weekends can work to your advantage.

Note that 20 days is the legal minimum amount of annual leave for your average full-time employee in Australia working Monday – Friday.

With the annual leave hack, it’s possible to have 12 days off in January, for example. You’d just need to spend 4 days of your annual leave, booking days off for Monday 24, Tuesday 25, Thursday 27 and Friday 28. You can also get 23 consecutive days off between April 9 and May 1 if you take every non-public holiday weekday off – a total of 12 annual leave days spent. This applies to all states.

Here’s how that schedule works:

  • Saturday 9 April – weekend
  • Sunday 10 April – weekend
  • Monday 11 April – annual leave
  • Tuesday 12 April – annual leave
  • Wednesday 13 April – annual leave
  • Thursday 14 April – annual leave
  • Friday 15 April – Good Friday
  • Saturday 16 April – weekend
  • Sunday 17 April – weekend
  • Monday 18 April – Easter Monday
  • Tuesday 19 April – annual leave
  • Wednesday 20 April – annual leave
  • Thursday 21 April – annual leave
  • Friday 22 April – annual leave
  • Saturday 23 April – weekend
  • Sunday 24 April – weekend
  • Monday 25 April – Anzac Day
  • Tuesday 26 April – annual leave
  • Wednesday 27 April – annual leave
  • Thursday 28 April – annual leave
  • Friday 29 April – annual leave
  • Saturday 30 April – weekend
  • Sunday 1 May – weekend

That’s obviously the perfect run to book in a holiday, even though jetting off overseas can be a bit dicey right now. Still, if you’re keen on somewhere like Fiji make sure you’re brushing up on where to stay with our round-up of the best Fiji resorts. Or if you’re staying domestic check out the wildest and most remote resorts in Australia.

Unfortunately, if you miss out on that April-May run, there won’t be another chance for such a substantial time out of office. For June you’ll obviously get a 4-day stretch if you take Friday 10 June off. October you’ll get 3 days off as per usual, without needing to take any annual leave seeing as it’s Labour Day weekend.

December 2022 is the next one, obviously, and you’ll need to take 28, 29, and 30 off to get a total of 10 days holiday between Christmas Eve (which falls on a weekend) and Monday 2 January 2023.

By the end of the year (or January 2 next year if you want to split hairs) you would have used just 20 days of annual leave for up to 58 days off. Of course, other states have slightly different calendars so you might want to check this annual leave hack against your 2022 public holidays calendar to make sure you’re getting out more than you put in.