Contracting Life

Contractors, freelancers and the Bank Holiday season

If you had a normal nine-to-five, you’d be joyously gearing up now for the spring Bank Holiday season. Easter is…

Author Photo by Kingsbridge

If you had a normal nine-to-five, you’d be joyously gearing up now for the spring Bank Holiday season. Easter is rapidly approaching with Good Friday and Easter Monday as days off for most employees (we even know some people who get a half-day on the Thursday), followed by the Early May Bank Holiday on 1 May and the Spring Bank Holiday on 29 May. That’s four extra paid days off within roughly six weeks of each other.

However, you don’t have a normal nine-to-five. You’re a contractor or a freelancer, which means there are four days coming up where it seems you either have to work when everyone else is off (including your partner and kids), or take the time off and just not get paid.

Bank Holidays can be a real bone of contention for contractors and freelancers. As well as the above, there’s also the issue of delayed payments because they’re not classed as working days, and just the simple issue of not being able to get hold of anyone because no one is in work.

So what can you do to make the spring Bank Holiday season a bit less trying?

Factor Bank Holidays into contracts and projects

If you’re planning, say, a six-week project or contract that includes all of those Bank Holidays, factor in four extra days so you can take them off without risking a missed deadline or loss of pay. Remember, you became a contractor in order to take control of your time, so don’t be afraid to remind a client you won’t be working on those days.

Work limited hours

If you really have to work over the Bank Holidays then try to work limited hours (just mornings, for instance, or just afternoons) so you have some time to spend with friends and family. It might not be quite the same as taking the full day, but at least you can have some time to enjoy yourself.

Make sure admin is done early

If you have any chasing up to do, or anything to agree with a client, make sure it’s tackled well before the Bank Holiday weekend so you’re not held back if you can’t get in touch with them.

Just take the days off

If you’re not going to leave yourself seriously short of cash, then just take the days off and enjoy them. As Brits, we’re among the countries with the least amount of public holidays in the world (we get eight while countries such as India and Colombia get 18) so we should generally enjoy the few that we do get. You’ll thank yourself for it and come back refreshed and ready to blast your targets.

And if you’re doing a bit of spring cleaning and organisation, you may well realise you need to sort your contractor insurance. If so, give the expert team at Kingsbridge a call on 01242 808740 or take a look at our website.

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