Why say “I'm on annual leave”? blog discussion

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  • pandas66pandas66 Forumite
    18.8K Posts
    We say annual leave at work as it encompasses what ever the colleague is doing. I think its the polite term.
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  • nearlyrichnearlyrich Forumite
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    Errata wrote: »
    The term Annual Leave comes from the British Civil Service,
    I agree with this as I used to be a civil servant, but it was pre email so I never got to use the phrase on my out of office, nowadays I have holidays and whilst the company I work for would like me to use their stiff woding on email and voicemail I prefer to do my own thing.

    My OOO curretly says I am unavailable until 27th August as I am taking Tuesday off :p
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  • I always put "I'm on holiday until..", I never use the term Annual Leave it sounds too formal to me. I also find that the word holiday differentiates what I'm doign from Paternity Leave etc quite well.

    What really annoys me is the number of people who "I'm on vacation", I work for an American company so a lot of people do it to avoid confusing the colonials but even people who have no dealings with the US do it whoch really annoys me for some reason.
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  • themaccasthemaccas Forumite
    1.5K Posts
    I first heard the phrase from the armed forces and assumed it had come from the military.

    But does it really matter? I mean it can hide a multitude of phrases come have already been suggested!
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  • TigerloveTigerlove Forumite
    2 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    It used to be holidays,then leave, now its annual leave. Which if you think about it makes no sense, because very rarely do people take their annual leave entitlement in one go. What you should reallly put is that you are taking a proprotion of your annual leave entitlement for the next few days/weeks etc. For those in science and technology based industries they should have to work out exact percentages.

    Also what's the big deal if people know you are on hols, apart from 'Bramblejam' who works with opportunistic burglars. I think its good for people to be jealous of your hols you can tell them you achieved by way of a nifty money saving website...
  • I work in the NHS and it's what the NHS call it - my holiday card has 'annual leave card' at the top. We all call it holiday though, except when we write on the board in our office where we are we tend to write A/L then the date we're back, because it's a tiny board so we just abbreviate, and H means 'gone home at the end of the day'. It's a strange thing, I suppose it's annual leave instead of holiday because you can do whatever you like with your annual leave, a lot of mine isn't spent on holiday but is spent at home!
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  • Firstly because employers refer to days of annual leave, which are used to take time off from work, whether due to actual holidays or not. My organisation refers to these days in my contract, in employee handbooks, in policies and procedures and on the actual card used to record usage as 'Annual Leave'... so logically I call them 'Annual Leave' too.

    Secondly: privacy. I don't want other people knowing or assuming that I'm off on holiday, just because I happen to have booked a weeks annual leave, for something most likely much more boring. It's no one else's business.
  • annual leave doesn't necessarily mean you've been 'on holiday' it can mean lots of things. If you put 'I'm on holiday' you're faced with 'where did you go' etc and you have to explain you were just pottering around at home. Wherever I've worked, it's always been called annual leave. Most of my career has been local government and the NHS where it's the norm.
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  • When you are desperatly trying to get hold of someone receiving an email saying "I'm on annual leave" at least leaves some scope for imagining them doing some alturistic activity rather than picturing them on a beach with a cocktail in thier hand.

    I try to leave the same illusion, although like others I'll be having a week off at home and don't really want another conversation about not going away. Using "away from the office" or "annual leave" does work on most people.
  • The whole "i'm on annual leave" thing seems to be a popular American thing.

    We don't do it. One reason is telling potential burglars you are out and your house is up for grabs and another reason is that your auto-reply kindly replies to all SPAM, thereby increasing your future SPAM email exponentially.

    Plus I can only afford a holiday every two years, so I'll be on bi-annual leave anyway....:D
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