Monday, 5 January 2009

Moving the Kiwi Summer Holidays?

According to a recent survey conducted by Research New Zealand, "almost half" of the kiwi population are keen to move the summer holidays from December to the traditionally hotter February.

The company says the poll showed many New Zealanders are convinced the late December summer holiday break "just isn't delivering warm enough weather".

The poll of 500 people (aged 15+) found that 51% of those surveyed (which to me translates to "just over half") wanted to leave the summer holidays as they were. 5% of people were undecided.

Research New Zealand director says the poll raised an interesting debate about the best time for people to enjoy their summer break, with most of the country back at work and school in February, when New Zealand tends to enjoy its best weather.

The poll isn't specific about what it counts as the "summer holiday period" in New Zealand. Most workers only receive 4 statutory/public holidays over December/January... Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year's Day and the Day After New Year's Day.

While many people do take holidays between Christmas and early January, this generally comes directly out of their annual leave or "time in lieu" provisions.

Some companies do force their workers to take a portion of their annual leave over the late December/early January period, but the majority of New Zealand workers are free to choose when they take their "summer break".

I would guess that most of the "41%" who want to move the summer holidays to February are probably free to do so, simply by applying for leave in February rather than December/January.

I doubt that moving the School, University, and Polytech summer holidays would actually be supported by around half the population, as it would require a massive rejigging of the country's education and work systems.

The school and tertiary terms would have to be moved around to accommodate a long holiday break in February, and could affect the traditional "end of year/up a grade" system in place in New Zealand schools and tertiary institutions.

* NZ Herald - Kiwis keen on moving summer holidays to February

Posted in |