Brits battle post holiday blues

12 September 2009

Stressed-out Britons feel day-to-day life is routine and a grind, according to new research released today.

As many people return from summer breaks, Brits feel that their working lives are monotonous with 56% saying they are stuck in the same routine and two thirds (66%) saying they don’t make the best use of their free time.

The survey of over 2,000 adults was conducted by national tourism body VisitEngland, which is encouraging Brits to take regular ‘daycations’ to help retain the holiday feeling.

According to VisitEngland, one way for employees to manage the sudden and difficult adjustment between holiday and work is to take a day trip, or to make the most of their day by escaping for a holiday even if just for a few hours.

59% of Brits don’t make the best use of their weekends, despite 78% feeling in a better mood for the rest of the week when they make plans for the weekend.

VisitEngland’s ‘Enjoy Every Minute, Enjoy England’ campaign calls for Brits to transform their free time – whether a day, evening or simply a lunch hour – into a mini holiday.

Wellbeing expert Dr Nick Baylis said: “Staying in the summer holiday mood as we plunge into September is a challenge. Just because you’re back at work doesn’t mean you should abandon the rhythm of your holiday altogether. If you’ve enjoyed an activity such as visiting an art gallery or a museum during your holiday, try to incorporate this within regular ‘daycations’ back home.”

59% of Brits say they don’t know England as well as they should and almost half (47%) wish they were more organised in planning their free time.

Amanda Smyth, VisitEngland Head of Marketing, said: “Going back to work after the holidays is a time for new beginnings rather than a return to old habits. We want to help people plan their free time and make the most of what England has to offer. Our research shows that 82% of people feel better when they’ve been on a day trip, and 69% feel happier when they’ve got something to look forward to.

“Visitors to can find lots of ideas and inspiration for a variety of ‘daycations’ and great ways to spend a lunch hour, evening, day or weekend, as well as great offers on accommodation, attractions and more.”

Facebook users have already latched on to the idea of taking a ‘daycation’; some recent user suggestions on the Enjoy England Facebook page include Leeds Castle and Rochester, Runswick Bay and Monkey World in Dorset.

Get the holiday feeling back with these top ‘daycation’ ideas:

- Cycle along Herefordshire’s cider trail, starting from Pembridge or Ledbury, learning how to make it, as well as drink it! End the day with a visit to the ‘other Hampton Court’ (offering 2 for 1 entry) with its original garden walls and canals and avenues through the beautiful new flower gardens.

- Spend a day taking in the sights of England’s most dramatic and stunning waterfalls along the Ingleton Waterfalls trail through the Yorkshire Dales.

- Make a holiday out of your lunch hour by taking in an art gallery or walking through a leafy park. If you’re in Liverpool, head to the Newz Bar where the permanent installation of eight ceiling panels, ‘Some Liverpool Radicals’ by artist David Jacques, will teach you a thing or two about Liverpool’s fascinating history.

- Take a canoe ride at dawn with Thames River adventures. Leave the office drama behind and spend your lunch hour at Fleet street’s Lunchbox theatre where you’ll see a condensed version of a classic play. If you’re hoping for more of a thrill, spend the afternoon exploring the Thames as James Bond would, on a speedboat with London RIB voyages.

- Try an ‘evecation’ by going on Lincoln’s notorious ghost walk, taking in Lincoln cathedral with its headless sculptures, the thrice haunted Greestone steps and archway and the ‘sad room’ at the famous White Hart Hotel.

Find these ideas and more at this autumn.

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