I'm currently changing my job. In order to focus on my job search, I've found it helpful to take an entire day of the week. In general, I find it hard to focus on my job search during the weekend.

I'm a recent graduate, so I don't have much experience with corporate job policies / manners.

Are there any issues that should be considered when using holiday hours for a job search?

This question was originally part of Why shouldn't I resign when I haven't secured another job?

  • 8
    Why the downvote? I'm a recently graduated, introverted, bad-at-figuring-out-social-norms developer, and I legitimately didn't know this. And I can imagine that other similar people would have this problem.
    – forivall
    Commented Nov 20, 2013 at 2:35
  • 1
    Hey forivall, I didn't make the downvote, but my guess is that the question is, "Should I feel ok?" which is opinion-based. A better question would be something that explains why and how like, "What should I be careful of when taking vacation days to job search?" which will allow people to explain rather than just say yes or no.
    – jmac
    Commented Nov 20, 2013 at 2:53

2 Answers 2


Holidays, annual leave, etc., there are entirely for you to do with as you wish. Whether you spend them interviewing for better jobs, or drinking cocktails on the beach in Barbados, that's nobody's business but your own.

So I think absolutely you should feel OK spending them on your job search.

Now there are a couple of caveats:

  • If you're leaving your teammates in the lurch by taking time off without giving an amount of warning that is deemed acceptable in your workplace, that's a different matter. Whatever your official policies and accepted practices are regarding giving notice of leave, you should stick to them.
  • And taking fake sick days to interview (while an extremely common practice) is not particularly ethical. You don't want to burn any bridges on your way out the door, so don't leave them remembering you as the guy who took a bunch of sickies to go to interviews, then stood there and bare-facedly said "yeah I had the flu" to his boss.

But using your personal leave entitlements to job-hunt is not something any reasonable person could object to.

  • 1
    Yeah, I'm not taking fake sick days. I know that's not ok. Besides, this company makes you use vacation days for sick days.
    – forivall
    Commented Nov 20, 2013 at 2:48
  • 4
    Love it. On the same idea of not burning bridges - keep an eye on overall deadlines and commitments, and keep your team or manager aware that you are still meeting them. And don't be afraid to push back on appointments for interviews if they force you to violate time off policies at your current job. Jobs want to fill staffing positions fast, they will push for fast bookings for interviews, but will wait for a quality candidate to do right by his current job, since it shows that you take your commitment seriously. Commented Nov 20, 2013 at 16:20

Yes. Vacation time can be used for any purpose. You do not owe your manager an explanation about what you do during your vacation time. In fact, it is better to use vacation time to look for a job rather than to use work time or work resources. If your company finds out that you are looking for another job during work time, it will influence the company's view of your productivity and loyalty. At the very worst, it could get you fired.

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