Do you find yourself sneaking into a corner to check on work e-mails while on holiday? If so, take a minute to reflect on whether that email really needs your urgent attention, or would you prefer to continue snoozing by the pool a little longer.

The team at Expedia has put together five practical tips to help you keep your work-leisure balance in check on vacation, so that you don’t have to become a statistic.

1. Accept that there is no 'perfect' work-leisure balance

With the always-on lifestyle making it ever challenging for us to separate work from leisure, it will do you good to simply accept the fact that there is no 'perfect' work-leisure balance.

Instead, strive for a 'realistic' work-leisure balance, by taking your role and responsibilities at work and at home into account, in order to strike a sustainable work-leisure rhythm that keeps you productive at work without burning out in the longer term.

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2. Plan your vacation and handover early

As with all things, planning early always helps. The 2019 Travel Pricing Outlook Report revealed that booking your flight at least three weeks in advance of travel is the sweet spot to maximising savings.

Not only does the early bird get the worm, it also gives you ample time to work out handover arrangements at work with your colleagues, while giving your other key contacts time to consider the possible gaps and work on filling them out before you take off to your destination.

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3. Set clear goals and priorities

Vacation opportunities usually come only once in a blue moon. Hence even when there is a good reason for you to stay connected to work on holiday, it is important to set clear goals and priorities to prevent work from encroaching too far into your vacation time.

Ask yourself – "is the task time-sensitive?", "can my colleagues take care of this independently?" and "how much time do I need to devote to this task on vacation?". Once done, prioritise the important tasks that require your urgent attention and deprioritise the rest till after your holiday.

ALSO READ: Employees in Malaysia utilise only 12 days of vacation a year

4. Don’t be afraid to unplug

Consider the upsides of unplugging from the world – disconnecting from your digital devices can allow you ample time to recover from work-related stress while giving you the space to refresh and recharge.

Unplugging can simply mean refraining from checking your mobile phone or laptop for a fixed period of time each day while you are on holiday, or if needed, switching your mobile phone off or turning on the airplane mode at specific times of the day to free you from the non-stop notifications.

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5. Set boundaries and communicate them clearly

If connecting to work is inevitable while on vacation, it is definitely worth your while to set boundaries for your available timings and to communicate this clearly to your co-workers and key contacts so that they know when to reach you for urgent work matters.

Additionally, it helps to explain the reasons for being inaccessible during the set hours, because you are engaged in personal activities and may not have access to your laptop or connectivity. This will help to ensure that they understand and respect your work limits and expectations.

ALSO READ: Learning to safely unplug from the office when on vacation

Taking regular vacations are necessary for your personal and professional wellbeing. By being mindful of these tips, we hope it encourages you to take the much-deserved time-off to recharge on your holiday!

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