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To be surprised by the number of holidays?

272 replies

brondary · 19/05/2021 20:22

I have been really surprised by the number of holidays some people on MN go on. I would not have the money or the annual leave to go on that many.
Last Summer people were commenting saying how since the first lockdown in March, they had already had to cancel three holidays. Various people talking about how they normally go on five or six holidays a year and are really missing them.
I must mix in different circles as I did not realise any except the super-rich went on this many holidays.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

359 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
Triphazard101 · 21/05/2021 09:03

@shivawnhow are you doing a long haul African safari for £2k - is there just one of you?

I wondered this. I went to SA including a 5 day safari over 20 years ago. It cost over 1k then, and I stayed with family for part of it.

shivawn · 21/05/2021 09:07

@Lucaslucas1612 Please tell me how you go to Asia and SA and long haul for 2K? I would those holidays would be coming up to 10k.

Just by booking everything ourselves, spending time searching for cheap flights and not being too fussed about fancy accommodation. And maybe by having backpacker roots haha Grin, we spent a couple days backpacking full time on a shoestring budget 10 years ago in our early 20's. We spend a lot more now but we still wouldn't be in to all inclusive resorts or fancy hotels. We'd rather be out hiking, exploring or on the beach than hanging out at a resort. Plus we go to cheap destinations too. So last holiday was to Mauritius, around €490 each for flights and under €300 total for an airbnb appartment rental which included access to a pool and I can't remember what we paid for car rental but maybe €150ish for the week, maybe less. Also we have whatever spending money we'd spend on a normal week at home which I don't include in 2k coz we'd be spending that regardless! I'm using euros because we live in Ireland.

shivawn · 21/05/2021 09:08

That should say a couple years backpacking fulltime not a couple days haha.

Undeuxdrei · 21/05/2021 09:11

Agree £2k per holiday long haul Hmm. Presumably she means per person...

theleafandnotthetree · 21/05/2021 09:12

Genuine question and I'm trying not to be goady, but those of you who do multiple holidays abroad per year, including several long-haul, do you think about or worry about the environnental cost of this level of travel (not just the flights, but all of it)? Do you anything to offset it? If I won or acquired an amount of money in the morning and could do this level of travel, I genuinely think I would wrestle with my conscience.

MirandaMarple · 21/05/2021 09:18

Holidays vary, in length and cost.

Not everyone has standard working hours or annual leave. People work shifts and have more days off.

I'm not rich, I'd say bordering on being comfortable but not quite.

I have one big holiday a year for a 3-4 week period in the winter. Somewhere like the Far East, South America etc. I usually take a week unpaid leave for that.

The rest of the year I go camping with my dogs in the UK. One week long trip a fair drive away then 2/3 weekend trips nearer to home. Cheap as chips (once you have bought a good tent)

Usually have 2 or 3 night break away abroad but closer to home once during the year too.

No children. That keeps the costs down!

CharBart · 21/05/2021 09:22

I’ve also wondered about the number of holidays people have on here, mainly in relation to annual leave! It’s interesting to see the different factors that come into play. I think living costs are a major one. We manage usually a week to 10 days on a euro camp type holiday in summer plus a week in the UK at Easter, a couple of camping trips and often another short break (did our first European city break with kids in 2019). Highish income by national standards but high mortgage (London). When we had childcare costs we just did one week in the Uk.
I wonder if family location is another factor. We have to use some annual leave visiting parents/ having them to stay and have to mainly cover school holidays between us so can’t use all our leave together. If we lived near parents this would free up more of our leave. Now kids are bigger we can leave them with parents for a few days so we have more leave to ourselves than when they were smaller.

ChristmasAlone · 21/05/2021 09:26

We would tend to go abroad around 5 times. Definitely not rich, book flights yourself don't go all inclusive places. Don't waste holiday at home use bank Holidays for an extra day.

February/March big holiday 10 days long haul
Easter back to his country 0 days
May bank holiday Friday-Monday leave after work Friday go somewhere UK 0 days
Second May Bank Holiday fly somewhere Thursday evening work there Friday come back Monday 0 days
August his country 5 days he'll go for 3 weeks
August Bank Holiday UK Trip Thursday-Tuesday 3 days
October long weekend somewhere 2/3 days

Thats 21 days holiday used 7 holidays and I have 4 for Christmas or an emergency.

shivawn · 21/05/2021 09:30

@DistrictCommissioner No two of us, we've done trips to South Africa & Swaziland, Kenya & Tanzania and had a cancelled trip to Namibia & Zimbabwe last year due to covid. We always budget 500-600 for flights.

We rented a cheap car and roadtripped South Africa from Cape Town right up the coast and across through Swaziland to Johannesburg. Accommodation right outside the national parks is cheap, maybe €20 a night, we did self drive safaris alongside rhinos, elephants and lions in our tiny little volvo. We usually took one guided safari drive per park but I preferred when it was just the 2 of us driving around and finding our own animals! It was a few years ago so I can't remember exactly what it cost, probably a bit more because it was a 3 weeks trip but I was a nursing student then working weekends in a nursing home and my husband was a trainee accountant so we didn't have much money!

In Kenya we went with friends so stayed in an all inclusive in Diani Beach for ease of travelling in a big group. Flew in to Mombasa, spent a few days in the city. Then took a 2 night, 3 day safari to Tsavo East, this was about 250 each for a private tour 6 of us including food and accommodation...we stayed in Manyatta Camp in luxury tented accommodation with private pools outside each of our tents facing the plains, we could see warthogs and zebras grazing which hanging out in the pool, highly recommended it!! After the safari we got the tour guide to drop us off in Diani Beach rather than going back to Mombasa. We stayed in Baobab Beach Resort, a massive all inclusive resort with multiple restaurants and pools right on the beach, not my usual kind of place but suited our needs, around 800 for the week there but thats included all food, activities and alcohol.

shivawn · 21/05/2021 09:31

Wow, that was longer than intended sorry! Started reminiscing!

ChristmasAlone · 21/05/2021 09:33

You don't need to spend 6k on a holiday 😅 book flights yourself, use to find an apartment. If you insist for some unbeknown reason on going all inclusive just book the cheapest place, your holiday will be the same whether it's a week in the Costa or a week in Caribbean, you're not doing anything just staying at a pool and occasionally going to a beach.

SwimBaby · 21/05/2021 09:34

When I went to Cape Town with my DH and 2 DC, we went with Virgin holidays and 8 nights in a five star hotel with breakfast staying in a family suite was £300 less than just booking the Virgin flights. So it’s definitely worth shopping around.

ChristmasAlone · 21/05/2021 09:43

When I went South Africa I flew with Ethiopian Airways to JoBo went on a Safari on Kruga, self drove the garden route to Cape Town staying in cheap accommodation. Got to Cape Town spent next to nothing staying in a hostel (private room had a pool) and there besides cage diving arranged everything ourselves. Done horse riding in Stellenboshe, wine tours, went seal watching, Cape Point, bungee jumped off the big bridge, paragliding. It always amazes me how people can spend so much on holidays like that when you can do it all yourself for a fraction of the cost. With flights we spent about 2k each and that made me wince a bit at the time.

shivawn · 21/05/2021 09:43


You don't need to spend 6k on a holiday 😅 book flights yourself, use to find an apartment. If you insist for some unbeknown reason on going all inclusive just book the cheapest place, your holiday will be the same whether it's a week in the Costa or a week in Caribbean, you're not doing anything just staying at a pool and occasionally going to a beach.

Amen to this!
NoIDontWatchLoveIsland · 21/05/2021 09:49

We are at the upper end of the spectrum, income wise. PiL have a holiday home in spain and my parents have one in france, plus DH uncle has one in Caribbean, another uncle has one in Portugal. In a typical year we would do two week long holidays at family holiday homes, plus a week in Cornwall, plus a short break at center parcs. When the children are older we will add a ski break.

NoIDontWatchLoveIsland · 21/05/2021 09:52

Before we had kids we went skiing and scuba diving so would typically have had at least one ski holiday a year, plus two or maybe three diving holidays. Then a couple if long weekend city breaks in places like Rome, Seville, Madrid, Paris, Budapest etc

JeanneDoe · 21/05/2021 10:00

If you’re clever with planning holidays around bank holidays and Easter, and can afford it, it’s easy to get 5-6 holidays in.

For instance, every non Covid years, we do
-a week in Europe in the summer,
-a week somewhere like Dubai at October half term,
-a week skiing February half term.

We will usually try a holiday in Asia (Thailand etc) at Christmas or a week at Easter in the US.

Then separately I’ll do a few long weekends with my female friends and my husband will take a few golf weekends with his friends.

Under normal circumstances we would both have 25 days annual leave and never use more than that.

I live for holidays and choose to spend most of my disposable going abroad.

Shadedog · 21/05/2021 10:09

I get 33 days holiday plus 8 BH days and my trust lets you buy 5 more days so 46 days altogether. Nearly 7 weeks. On top of this I work long shifts so get 4 days off a week without using a minute of AL . If it wasn’t for these pesky kids I could have loads of holidays but it is mega exppensive with a big family when limited to school holidays. I stay with my parents a couple of times a year and call it a holiday. I can easily afford a cheap city break with a girlfriend because I only have to pay for myself and so easy to book hotel room for just 2, and I have had a few weeekends away in haven type places with girlfriends for very cheap. I counted them as holidays even though in one of them I went and worked a 13 hour shift in t(e middle. We just go local places and chill out and have pub meal etc. Dh is self employed and has only had 3 holidays in last 20years and I do find it hard taking dcs without him. I go caravan/haven with my sister and nieces with my dcs and it’s very cheap per person.

DistrictCommissioner · 21/05/2021 10:14

ah @shivawn there's 5 of us! I've spent lots of time back & forth to southern Africa, but the cheapest I've ever got flights there was at £400 per person - so we are on £2k before we even get there.

LindaEllen · 21/05/2021 10:30

I haven't been abroad since 2009, and haven't been on holiday at all since 2018 (and even that was two nights in the Lakes) - we just cannot afford it. Things are going wrong with the house that we're trying to catch up with, which has to be priority. I just don't feel like we can warrant spending money on a couple of weeks when there are things that need doing that will improve our life long term.

shivawn · 21/05/2021 10:41

@DistrictCommissioner Ah, I have my first on the way so I'll no doubt be upping my budget in the future too! Smile Will try to make the most of the free or heavily discounted flights and accommodation in the first 2 years though Wink.

NoIDontWatchLoveIsland · 21/05/2021 11:32

I should add, my children arent school age yet, so we benefit from going whenever we want and choosing for cheaper prices. School holiday prices will mean we won't do center parcs any more (don't feel its worth it really).

EileenGC · 21/05/2021 11:56


Genuine question and I'm trying not to be goady, but those of you who do multiple holidays abroad per year, including several long-haul, do you think about or worry about the environnental cost of this level of travel (not just the flights, but all of it)? Do you anything to offset it? If I won or acquired an amount of money in the morning and could do this level of travel, I genuinely think I would wrestle with my conscience.

In normal times it’s usual for me to take 50-60 flights a year (for work). I do think about the environmental impact, yes. On the other hand, my footprint is very similar to an average family with 4 members, a house and cars.

I don’t have children.
I don’t drive or own a car, always walk or use public transport. I think I get into a taxi twice per year max.
I’m vegetarian - never eaten meat or fish in my entire life, and I try and eat as little dairy as possible too.
I have about 5 changes of clothes at any given time, which only get replaced when they’re so full of holes it’d be embarrassing to go out on the street dressed in them.
I have a small flat and only heat 1 room during the winter, so very low electric and gas usage overall.
I try and consume as little plastic as possible (foodstuffs, cleaning and hygiene, etc).

Now, how many people don’t take a flight for environmental reasons, but have multiple children and expect no judgment for that (they have a right to it, of course, and I’d personally never judge them for it), have one or two cars per household and use them to do the shopping or get to the train station instead of walking 45 mins each way (which is of course more uncomfortable and less time-efficient, but not always necessary), go visit family instead of taking a bus, even if it takes 2h..., long list of etc? How many people go shopping at least twice a year for new clothes?

So I do think about it but don’t feel guilty about being on a plane so often. I have made my choices on how to contaminate this planet, same as everyone else around me. I sometimes donate to a carbon offset initiative, and I do get quite angry when the quickest way of getting somewhere involves multiple 1 hour flights, when a good rail infrastructure would mean I could make the journey by train and be greener in the process.

By the time summer comes and I have the option of getting an extra couple of flights to go see my family, I don’t even consider not going. I’ve already done enough harm during the year. Completely changing careers is not even an option, so I try compensate as much as I can in other aspects of my life. Without feeling guilty about it at all.
EdgeOfFortyNine · 21/05/2021 13:03

We (usually) go on a lot of holidays. DH is a shift worker and his normal pattern is 4 x 12 hour shifts, then 6 days off. If he works on his days off then he can accrue toil hours. We don't have school-age children, I'm part-time self-employed and choose my own hours.
So by booking carefully around DH's shift pattern we can go away for a week without him actually using holiday entitlement.

We aren't frugal as such but we do prioritise holidays over other things. Our kitchen and bathroom are both over 20 years old, neither of us have ever bought a brand new car. We rarely buy takeaways, hardly ever go in places like Costa/ Starbucks, I don't buy expensive clothes or buy cheap clothes frequently, don't have expensive skincare routine or haircuts. I rarely drink alcohol but have close friends who drink a bottle of wine 5 or 6 evenings a week...
I'm the sort of person who will park 10 minutes away to save £3 on a car park ticket, but because I've always done it - initially through necessity- I don't think anything of it, until someone else comments.

DH and I grew up Working Class, both left school at 16. We appreciate what we have, and know we're very fortunate compared to a lot of people.

Kidson · 21/05/2021 14:03

@shivawn I shop around and get some absolutely amazing deals. People talk about how can they afford it on what I earn because im away somewhere long haul 5 star with a private pool or whatever and they’re thinking that would cost way more than their week in Turkey or whatever but then they tell me how much it is and I wouldn’t dream of paying that. It’s all about deals! We too have done long haul for just over 2k for the two of us. I just won’t pay when it’s at its peak. Skyscanner and scouring Expedia etc is almost a hobby, because if I can get booked for as cheap as possible then I can maybe squeeze another holiday in with the savings. Please note this is absolutely not a brag about how much money I have, I don’t! Just that sometimes the holidays seem more expensive than they are/have to be, and I wait for real deals/bargains.

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