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I was hired in a firm by the start of November. We agreed that I would be working from home and then relocate at the start of December. What is a proper way to ask if I get any vacations for Christmas and New Year's without sounding like someone who wants to slack-off? I also need to know as soon as possible in order to book airplane tickets

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  • Are you in a jurisdiction where Christmas and/or New Year are public holidays? Do you accrue holidays with pay (in which case you will maybe have 2 or 3 days by Christmas) or an allowance for the year (and when does that "year" start - because if it's 1st Jan then, again, you'll have only 2 or 3 days)?
    – HorusKol
    Commented Nov 26, 2016 at 5:32
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    But asking is easy - go to your boss and say "I was hoping to fly to X to visit my family over the holidays, will I haves earned any vacation time by then?" You won't look like a slacker because you are asking for what you've earnt.
    – HorusKol
    Commented Nov 26, 2016 at 5:34
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    Isn't this something that is regulated in your contract?
    – Bernhard
    Commented Nov 26, 2016 at 7:57

2 Answers 2

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Ask. It's entirely reasonable to want family holidays off. The worst they can say is no.

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What is a proper way to ask if I get any vacations for Christmas and New Year's without sounding like someone who wants to slack-off?

It would have been easier for everyone if you had discussed this in November before you were hired. Then your plans would already have been clear.

But since that didn't happen, you'll just have to speak with management and ask if you can take vacations after relocating. There's nothing you can do to affect how this request is received at this point.

If the firm has an HR department, they may have published rules regarding vacation accruals. You might want to check them first, and see how they handle vacation time that is not yet accrued. Many companies allow you to "borrow" time against future accruals. Some will let you take unpaid time off.

Of course, depending on the nature of your work and your firm, it may not be possible to get vacation time on such short notice, or it may not matter at all. Retailers may not want to grant time off for new hires during critical sales times. But for many office positions it will be a slow time and vacations may be easy to come by.

You'll just have to ask. Do it now. It may be too late to get any bargain airfares, but if you wait any longer you may not even get a seat.

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