How to Turn 19 Days of Annual Leave Into 43 Days of Holidays in 2018

Before you plan and book your 2018 vacations, it’s time to get strategic with your trips. Between national and bank holidays, you can turn just 19 days of your annual leave into a whopping 43 days of vacation and travel and relaxation.
To help maximise your time off and get the most out of your holiday, travel company Contiki has figured out exactly which days you should take off in the coming year to ensure you get the most vacation time you can.
Take a look at the yearly calendar to see which days in 2018 will be public holidays in Australia, when you should take leave, and when you should simply make your trip a longer weekend:

2018 annual leave trip planner calendar
Image via Contiki

Did you spot that end of March and April calendar? Easter (or spring break, anyone?) is looking pretty sweet this year. Between the public holidays you can expect, to the long weekends, taking some paid time off in those weeks can mean you can take a two-week vacation, followed by a one-week holiday within a matter of a month and a half.
And that — according to science — is ideal. New research this year showed that in order to get all of the mindfulness and wellness benefits from holiday — stress relief, happiness, etc. — your vacation should last at least eight full days. That means March and April will be ideal months to fulfill that mindfulness resolution you’ve set for the new year.
annual leave vacation
Image via Contiki

Once you have your days chosen — and your PTO booked at work — it’s time to decide exactly where you’ll be jetting off to come the new year.
Whether you want to get to a cool emerging destination before anyone else finds it, or one of these nine most underrated destinations, just don’t make the biggest mistake most other millennials make while traveling or vacationing.
Remember to unplug. Ditch that phone, if even just for a few hours, and explore your new surroundings and relax, reveling in the fact that you’re not due at work in at least a few days.
annual leave vacation
Image via Contiki

If you’re still a bit stuck on your destination city, why not look to the stars for guidance? Literally. Find your ideal travel city, based on your star sign, to see which stamp in your passport you should get next.

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