Our Xmas party was just announced and it's going to be on a Thursday, in over 2 months' time (Dec 14th). I asked for the next day off. As far as I am aware, there is sufficient cover and I asked for the day off before most knew the party was Thursday. I have sufficient amount of time to take etc.

Our boss sent a note to the team about 30 minutes later saying:

Morning @here Please hold off on time off requests for Friday Dec. 15 (post-xmas party). More details to come! (you can, of course request it off as per the norm…just not as a ‘hangover day’).

Is this OK? It seems to me that this isn't any of her business. I didn't specify that it was for a 'hangover day', though obviously it is.

Any advice on how to handle this?

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    Her email says 'Please hold off/more details to come'. You might be pleasantly surprised that the company may declare the Friday a general holiday. – PeteCon Oct 4 '17 at 17:02
  • "Is this OK?" Seems OK to me. – Masked Man Oct 4 '17 at 17:06
  • Ugh - I hope my boss doesn't figure out my yearly first Monday of February off (US). – Hannover Fist Oct 4 '17 at 17:31
  • What does your employee handbook say? – AffableAmbler Oct 4 '17 at 17:40
  • This is either a joke, or a hint that she expects people not to get completely sloshed at your X-max party. Just request the day off and stay within your limits at the party. – NoBackingDown Oct 4 '17 at 18:24

Any advice?

Yes, do not sweat the little stuff. That last part

…just not as a ‘hangover day'

was obviously a joke. Although that may not be the best use of a joke, a joke it is all the same.

You could ask your boss about this or take the offensive joke to HR, but I don't think the juice is worth the squeeze here.

  • Thanks for your answers. I don't think there's a general office day off, as she said in her original email that people can still have it off for other reasons. For those of you who are saying not to drink too much and I won't need a day off. I should be allowed a day off 2+ months in advance for whatever reason I want, if there's cover, which there is. I really don't think it's right to be dictated to over what I choose to do on my time off. – user77721 Oct 4 '17 at 17:29
  • @user77721 My advice is to ignore the joke part of the response. You could simply call out ill. Check your employee handbook for specific restrictions. – Mister Positive Oct 4 '17 at 18:05
  • " I don't think the juice is worth the squeeze here." - I'm having that one. – Wesley Long Oct 5 '17 at 5:21

I think it is not necessary for you to specify it is a "hangover day" for you boss to be able to foresee your possible intentions on asking a day off that day.

Besides, judging by the note he sent, it seems that you are not the only one to have requested a day off that day, which probably made him even more suspicious on what could happen that day.

Is this OK?

If I were you boss I would probably have done the same. It is perfeclty ok to warn (note he is not denying any request) you to withold your requests if your reasons are that you will be hungover.

Any advice?

Don't drink too much that day, so you don't have a hangover and are not "forced" to ask for a day off.

As a side note, last year in my company we also had a Christmas party, and even though most of us went home past 3 a.m. we were all the next day in the office (of course, most of us were also late, but given the time the party ended it is understandable). However, it was not the most productive day we've had.

Update: As commented by @PeteCon it could be the case that your boss is trying to get you all a general day off, given that it is understandable that one may end up hangover tired after a big party, so don't rush into any conclusions as this could result better than you expected.


Morning @here Please hold off on time off requests for Friday Dec. 15 (post-xmas party). More details to come! (you can, of course request it off as per the norm…just not as a ‘hangover day’).

Worst case scenario, it sounds like the company is trying to mitigate the (potentially large) number of employees who might try to book this day off as a "hangover day."

Better case scenario, the "more details to come" bit suggests that they have something special planned for that Friday and they don't want too many people to miss it by booking the day off.

In either case, they've explicitly given permission to book the day off "per the norm" and (based on my own experience as a Canadian) "the norm" for booking days off does not require you to give a reason why you're booking it off. And you've already booked it off anyway, so you shouldn't need to answer any questions about it. Just don't mention that you did, in fact, book it off for a hangover day and everything should be kosher.

  • +1 for a large number of employees trying to get that day off. If the email was sent to the entire team, it seems likely that others may have also requested that day off – Jared Goguen Oct 5 '17 at 17:13

It seems to me the intent of your boss's email is not to stop you requesting a day off, but to stop you requesting it as a hangover day. There could be very good reasons for not wanting that as a reason on record. Perhaps as it would upset shareholders, or auditors etc.

I would recommend, very simply, just requesting a day off. As you have mentioned, you have checked there is sufficient cover, and it is sufficient notice.



If you are going to get drunk, get drunk any other day of the year.

In other words, don't get drunk at work functions.

That is my advice.

Also (and admittedly off topic)... drinking is better without getting drunk IMO. Learn to hold your liquor!

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