Key dates

10 days leave: 1 February – 31 January
  • Staff send applications to their manager by 18 January
  • Line managers send applications to payroll and HR by 31 January
5 days leave: 1 August – 31 January
  • Staff send applications to their manager by 18 July
  • Line managers send applications to payroll and HR by 31 July
Additional holiday application form [PDF]

The College runs an additional holiday leave scheme which allows you to buy additional holiday.  By doing so you agree to an equivalent reduction in your salary, spread out evenly across the period for which the leave has been granted (i.e. twelve or six months).

This scheme is discretionary, therefore, before submitting an application for additional holiday leave, you should first confirm with your manager, that your department/division offers the scheme.  Applications will not be considered if your department/division does not offer the option of taking additional holiday leave.

How it works

Additional leave is for when you wish to take more holiday leave. See our Annual leave page for information on terms and conditions of holiday leave. When you take additional leave, you exchange an equivalent portion of your salary for the number of days taken as additional holiday leave. 

For full-time staff the reduction in pay for each day of additional holiday leave approved is equal to your annual basic salary divided by 261 (based on there being 261 working days a year). For part-time staff the reduction will be calculated pro-rata.

If you take the maximum ten days, your salary for the year will be reduced by about 4%. The reduction in pay is spread evenly across the period in which the extra leave is granted (twelve or six months depending whether you apply in January or July). This applies regardless of when you choose to use the leave.

London weighting, special allowances and honoraria, if any, are not affected by the pay reduction. By reducing your salary, the amount of tax and National Insurance you pay will also reduce. At the end of the agreed period, your salary will revert to its normal level.

Please note that when additional holiday leave has been agreed, you cannot change your mind. The changes to your employment contract and your salary cannot be reverted before the end of the leave year and only in exceptional circumstances will you be able to carry forward additional holiday leave into the next leave year.

Leave amount

You can take up to:

  • 10 days over a 12 month period (between 1 February to 31 January)
  • 5 days over a 6 month period (between 1 August to 31 January)

This is pro-rated for part-time staff.

When to apply

Staff: Send your application to your manager no more than 2 months prior to the due dates.

For 10 days (max) between 1 February and 31 January

  • Staff send applications to their manager by 18 January
  • Line managers send applications to payroll and HR by 31 January

For 5 days (max) between 1 August and 31 January

  • Staff send applications to their manager by 18 July
  • Line managers send applications to payroll and HR by 31 July

You cannot apply at any other time, and if you miss the deadlines for submitting your request form, you will need to wait another six months before your application can be considered. 

It should be noted that you cannot make more than one request for additional holiday leave in any given leave year.

Frequently asked questions

Carry forward leave

Only in exceptional circumstances would a line manager give approval for additional holiday leave to be carried forward to the following leave year. Additional holiday leave should be taken before regular annual leave.

Promotions / pay rises / changing job family

Your basic salary (before the reduction required to purchase additional holiday leave) will be adjusted in accordance with the usual procedures for promotions or pay rises. This will automatically result in a small adjustment to the reduction for additional holiday leave, from the point at which the changes are made. Arrears of pay will not affect this calculation.

Change working hours

Deductions will continue to be taken from your salary payment based on your changed working hours, i.e. a member of staff moving from full time to part time employment will have deductions made according to their pro-rated salary.

Overtime

If you are in a grade where overtime payments are made, you will continue to be paid for approved overtime at a rate based on your basic salary (i.e. before the reduction required to purchase additional holiday leave).

Pension

Pensionable salary (i.e. before the reduction required to purchase additional holiday leave) is used for pension calculation purposes. Neither pensionable salary nor the length of service used to calculate your pension is affected by the additional holiday leave scheme.

In order to maintain their full pension record, staff should continue to pay their normal contributions through the payroll system, whether or not they purchase additional holiday leave. The College will likewise continue to maintain the employer’s contribution in full.

Any queries should be raised with the Pensions Office (pensions@imperial.ac.uk or phone 020 7594 5539).

State benefits

As purchasing additional holiday leave involves a reduction in your contractual salary, members of staff should be aware that any state benefits which use this as the basis for calculating entitlement may be affected. This includes state pension, statutory maternity pay, and tax credits, although the impact on some of these will be negligible (you may choose to seek advice on this from HMRC).

Statutory maternity, paternity and sick pay are, for the majority of employees, enhanced by the College’s contractual pay schemes, and therefore most employees’ overall entitlements will be unaffected by the Additional Holiday Leave scheme. However, this depends upon individual circumstances and in cases of doubt staff should seek independent advice (e.g. from a Citizens Advice Bureau, or the Government Agency responsible for providing the benefit in question).

For staff who have chosen not to join the College’s superannuation schemes, there may also be an impact on their state Second Pension as this is linked to NI contributions. It is anticipated that this impact will be minimal.

Leaving the College

You should use any (pro rated) outstanding holiday leave entitlement prior to leaving the College. In exceptional circumstances you may be entitled to payment in lieu of holiday leave, subject to approval by your head of department.

Other leave types

Additional leave is not affected by and does not affect any other leave type other than holiday leave entitlements within annual leave. 

Refer to sickness absence if you are sick during your additional leave. 

What appears on my payslip?

The monthly reduction in your pay will appear (like any other salary sacrifices which you have entered into) as a separate item under the column “Pay Details this Period” as negative earnings, i.e. with brackets around it.

Mortgage or finance applications

In response to formal requests received by the College for confirmation of your salary your basic salary (i.e. before the reduction required to purchase additional holiday leave) will be provided.

Accessible documents

Some of the downloadable documents linked to on this page are not accessible. For accessible versions, please contact hrpolicy@imperial.ac.uk.