What are your Holiday Policies?

Action Jackson VA

New Member
The holidays are near and I am wondering what types of policies do you have in place to cover your holiday time?

When I worked at the university I always had December 15th through January 2nd off. This was a paid benefit.

Now that I am a business owner, virtually, I would like to know how does everyone assess what their time off will be?

If you already have a policy in place for holidays please let us know.

If you do not, what do you plan on doing to put a holiday policy in place?

Thank you for any feedback,


New Member
Re: What are you Holiday Policies?

Hi Andrea, :)

I usually take a week off for the holidays, depending on if we're traveling. My clients know I observe all typical holiday days, but then b/c we live out of state away from our families, we do take more time off than others. So for instance this year, we're visiting our families during Thanksgiving but not Christmas - so I've already let everyone know I won't be available during the entire week of Thanksgiving. For Christmas, I plan to operate as usual, except for the actual holiday (though I'll probably take Fri. & Mon.). Same goes for New Years - 2 days is usually what I take unless we're out of town.

Clear as mud? lol :) So I guess my real "policy" is 2 days per holiday, unless we're out of town, then it's usually the whole week off (but we don't do more than 1 major holiday a year). My clients are very flexible & understanding so I've never had an issue with this. HTH.


New Member
this is what I do:-

Jan 1st
March 17 [St Patricks Day] [COMPLETELY CLOSED]
Good Friday [only open from 10am til 1pm]
Easter Monday
First Monday in May [MayDay]
My Birthday [31st May - UK Spring Hol last Monday in May]
First Monday in June [Irish June Holiday]
First Monday in August [August Bank Holiday - check/respond to emails only & internal Admin work only]
Last Monday in August [UK August Bank Holiday - completely closed apart from emergency work]
Last Monday in October [internal admin work and Emergency work]
Xmas Day [25 December]
Boxing Day [26 Dec]
Xmas Week [27-31st Dec] - Emergency work only - Dec 27 I will only be doing internal Admin work and checking emails/calls...

if any of the above lie on a Saturday or Sunday then I take the next Monday off.

Plus, I have to have at least two days off every 3 months, and I have a week off in the summer.

I hope I'm clear. I do love being self-employed [albeit it being part-time!] but I need to have time off, too! ;) and even though I live & work in the UK I tend to obey the Irish holidays [yes, I'm weird... :rolleyes:]


New Member
Great question, Andrea. Well, since I have no obligations (except to myself) during US holidays, I will work if a client has projects that need to be finished. Granted, I will take days like New Years, Christmas, Memorial Day, 4th of July, etc. off, but that depends on client needs. My unpublished policy on this may change in the future, but for now it's working for me.

The greatest thing about having my own VA business is that I don't consider what I do now as "work" per se, because I love doing it and find it relaxing. Compare this to when I was in the corporate world - then you're darn tootin' I would take off all the holidays offered and vacation time to boot! :D
I take the standard holidays off - Christmas, new Year's, St. Pat's Day, Easter, etc. I try to take a long weekend. If my client workload allows, I plan to take the week between Christmas and New Year's off.

It's great to be able to decide when you want time off. My philosophy is I need time to rejuvenate and refresh myself or I'm no good to anyone!



New Member
I usually take weekends off and do my own paperwork but if there is something that needs to be done I, like Jules will work. I don't have a policy in place and have not had a need for one.

I have taken time off and just let my current clients know my plans and we worked everything out. I have seen a VA here hire someone to cover a few of her projects when she took time off.

Since I am able to check my e-mails when away that has helped keep clients happy.



New Member
Hello Action.

My holiday policy is easy, for this year, I am closed Thursday and Friday during the Thanksgiving Holiday.

During the Christimas Holidays, On December 24, I am closing my office at 2p.m. est. From December 25, 2009 to January 1, 2010 my office will be closed. I will have someone on call to answer the phones and emails. We only take jobs from our on board clients. No one will be available, Christmas Day, New Years Eve or New Years Day.:wings:


New Member
Good Question. I never thought about holiday policies. I am still seeking my first client so this isn't an issue for me right now but I think in the future I will set some holiday policies. Thanks for the question.

Office Goddess

New Member
For Goddess, I take off Sundays, the standard holidays, and from Christmas Eve through New Years Day.

For my 9-5, I take off weekends, the standard holidays (paid), and the day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and New Years Eve (unpaid). I don't get vacation pay. *sigh*

My clients ASSUME I am unavailable weekends and holidays and I let them know I am closed between Christmas Eve and New Years Day.


New Member
Thanks for the great guidelines! With regard to taking a vacation during the year, how do you handle that with your clients?


New Member
Thanks for sharing your policies! I will definitely take weekends off, unless I have a specific rush request and all the 'regular' holidays. I will address anything additional when the time comes and when I actually have clients!

This has been a really great thread to read, thank you to everyone for sharing. When I formally launch, I am not sure how much of a hoilday's policy I will have in place, but this has certainly given me something to think about.


New Member
Hi Andrea,
Thanks for asking that question. I am currently working on opening my VA business and was searching for how other VAs worked during the holidays. This post answered my question very well!

Jen Rivet

New Member
I think we are all pretty typical. My clients know that my family comes first, that's what they like about me (or so I'm told). Major holidays off - Easter, July 4th, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. I also take a week in the summer and do bring my cell & Laptop. Most times I check in to be sure there is no real crisis, although I enjoy tent camping in the mountains, I'll venture into town and find a wireless hotspot. Clients always tell me that I'm on vacation and everything will be there when I get back. :)

Elite Virtual

New Member
I usually send out reminders 2 weeks in advance to clients letting them know that I won't be available during certain days leading up to or after a holiday in addition to the holiday. For instance, I'm a Christmas baby so that means that Dec 23rd thru Dec 28th I'm unavailable because it's vacation for me every year. I usually work all other holidays (part-time hours) other than New Year's Eve, Easter and Thanksgiving.

I don't mind working the way I do because I love what I do given that it allows me to go wherever I want to go and still do business. Just some holidays I have to be off completely.


New Member
I have pretty typical American holidays off. I basically formatted it after what my husband has off so we've got that long weekend for family time. I've got Thursday and Friday off for Thanksgiving and then for Christmas I have the 23rd-26th off.

I also state in my contract that my office is closed at those times as well as any vacation time I have lined up. I currently have listed my October vacation as well as a week off for IVAA Live in April. I feel being upfront about it works best.


New Member
I let my clients know that I am not available by phone. I am not checking my email regularly so do not expect me to be a quick responder,
I also think it's a really good idea to let your clients know -- whether holiday time, etc. -- if you are not going to be available either by phone or email. In my experience I have not had to work with clients over holidays, with the exception of 'overflow' transcription work I take on now and then for other transcribers or for transcription companies.

It's a good idea also to ask one or two VAs who you know and trust if they would be willing to back you up should you need to take a few days off or in a time of an emergency -- just in case you have a client who needs and/or depends entirely on you to manage his/her business. :thumbsup:


New Member
I usually give two months' notice if I'm taking time off. My usual time off is Christmas, which tends to be fairly quiet workwise anyway. At the moment I work all other public holidays.