Skip to main content

Hack the leave 2023 UK: can you turn 20 days of annual leave into 50 with these bank holiday hacks?

travellers taking a train in Europe

Calling all Brits who love a day off! Looking to hack next year’s annual leave? Check out our list below of UK bank holidays in 2023 and find out how to maximise your free time with our handy Annual Leave calculator – then read on to get tips on the top destinations to visit throughout the year. 

January (start planning)

January 2nd is a New Year’s Day substitute day. It falls on a Monday, which means you’ll have a 3-day weekend. How’s that for starting the year right?

Take advantage of the first Bank holiday of the year to get some well-deserved rest and start planning those epic, new adventures for the year to come. Whether it’s doing an in-depth tour of Italy, hiking in Yellowstone or going on an exotic beach holiday, January’s a great time to start planning your long-awaited travel dreams and take advantage of countless flight deals (cheaper flight tickets anyone?). (Note: If you’re from Scotland, you’ll also have January 3rd off).

See below for an example of your bank holidays, and ‘weekend extenders’.

uk hack your annual leave calendar

April (Easter)

In April, Easter brings another great opportunity to maximise your annual leave. Good Friday is on April 7th, which falls on a Friday and then Easter Monday is on April 10th (for England and Wales). Book the following 8 days of annual leave for a total of 16 days off:

Travel tip: Amsterdam is lovely during spring time, so why not celebrate Easter in the land of chocolate and tulips? 

If you want to venture further, cherry blossom season in Japan is an absolute must-see. Visit from late March to mid-April to enjoy the soft pink blanket of flowers, symbol of renewal and hope.


May (sunshine)

They say that May is the sunniest month of the year in the UK. You don’t really want to spend it indoors, do you? Here’s how to get more time for travelling with this simple bank holiday hack:

The Early May bank holiday on May 1st and the Bank holiday for the Coronation of King Charles III from May 8th will give you two long weekends. These are great all on their own, however if you’d like to maximise your annual leave you could take the following 8 days off and enjoy a total of 16 days of holiday time:

Soon after that comes Spring Bank Holiday, on May 29th, falling on a Monday, which will give you another 3-day weekend.

Travel tip: Greece is an excellent destination to explore in May, if you’re looking for both city and island vibes. The temperatures are mild and the beaches are not yet packed with tourists.

young group of travelers taking a picture in athens, greece

Will we get a bank holiday for King Charles III’s coronation?

Yes, it has been confirmed that King Charles III’s coronation will be accompanied by an extra bank holiday on Monday, May 8th 2023.

As Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said, “The Coronation of a new monarch is a unique moment for our country. In recognition of this historic occasion, I am pleased to announce an additional bank holiday for the whole United Kingdom next year.”

August (last taste of summer)

Sadly, June and July won’t offer you any extra days off, however in August you’ll get a summer bank holiday on the 28th (England, Wales and Northern Ireland), which falls on a Monday. Take August 29th as annual leave day to enjoy that last taste of summer. You can spend a relaxing holiday by the beach, go hiking or sightseeing in Europe with a cool new group of friends. Sky’s the limit!

In Scotland, the summer bank holiday will be on August 7th, which also falls on a Monday. 

Amsterdam friends

December (Christmas vibes and good times)

In December you’ll get two days off for Christmas. The first is on Christmas Day, December 25th and the second is on December 26th for Boxing Day. Take the following days off and you’ll get 9 days of holiday time for just 3 days of leave:

Travel tip: If you’re looking to hit the Christmas markets this year, our German Christmas Markets is just what you need. This 7-day winter celebration will take you through six different cities, all complete with handmade gifts, steaming mulled wine, cobblestone streets waiting to be explored and more.

So there you have it. With these simple hacks, you’ll be able to enjoy 50 days off with just 20 days of annual leave. 

Stop dreaming and make sh*t happen!