Vacation is earned in the workplace, and it’s not something employees should be ashamed to ask for. Asking for time off is a simple process that, when done correctly, should result in little resistance from your employer. However, the key to making a successful vacation email request is being prepared and knowing what you want to say before you even reach out to your boss.
Time off is essential to your health, well-being, and future performance at work. But it’s not always easy to ask for — even if you deserve it. If you’re wondering how to request vacation via email, here are some guidelines to help you out.
Table of Contents
What To Do Before You Send Your Vacation Request Email
There are three steps you should take before you request a vacation. Taking these steps will set you up for success and make it easier for your boss to say YES to your vacation email request.
- Research the best days to take a vacation.
- Check your organization’s vacation policy.
- Reach out to team members if you need coverage during your time away.
Research The Best Days To Take Vacation
Before you request vacation, you will want to make sure that you set yourself up for success.
There’s nothing worse than getting a big fat “NO” on your vacation email request.
So here’s what you can do. Research your company calendar and any major events coming up to determine if there are any days or a time to avoid.
Big company picnic or team-building event coming up? Avoid those days.
If your employer is going through an audit, or another important event where people might need your expertise, or need you available to answer questions, you’ll want to make sure you avoid requesting on vacation those days so that you can be available if needed, and reduce the risk that you might need to work anyway during your vacation.
You will also want to avoid days where everyone else is taking a vacation if your team needs to cover.
If you plan to request vacation during vacation-heavy dates, such as the holiday season, be sure to put your request in very early so that you are on the schedule and give the organization time to plan for coverage.
Requesting vacation early and giving advance notice maximizes the chances that you will get approval. When possible, don’t request vacation one day, or even one week before you plan to take it.
It can also help to preface the request for time with a quick conversation or chat with your supervisor to get buy-in before you submit the official request.
Check Your Organization’s Vacation Policy
You’ll also want to check your employer’s vacation policy or employee handbook to determine whether you are able to take a vacation, and the proper way to submit a vacation request.
While it is standard to send a vacation request email, you may also need to fill out a specific form, documentation, or process to request a vacation.
Review the vacation policy to make sure that you have enough vacation hours or vacation days available and to double-check to make sure if there are any specific forms were online systems that you will need to fill out. For example, in addition to sending a formal email, there may be a specific vacation request form that you need to fill out.
Reach Out To Team Members To Cover Tasks While You Are Away
Make sure you speak to your team members so that you have coverage while you are away. Determine who can handle specific projects, attend meetings, and generally ensure that all of the important work is done while you are away.
You should take this step because it will help your boss feel more secure in approving your vacation request, and it will also make it easier on you since no one will reach out to you while you are away. If there are emergencies at work, you will need to outline a plan in order to handle them,
What to Include in a Vacation Request Email
Follow these steps to write a simple vacation request email:
- Write a clear subject line.
- Provide the dates of your vacation.
- Outline a plan to cover your responsibilities.
- Provide your contact details.
- Say thank you and sign-off.
When it comes to writing the actual email, there are also some guidelines that you should follow. These guidelines will help craft the body of your email. And remember to send your email weeks in advance or even months in advance to give your employer plenty of time to review the request.
Write a Clear Subject Line
You will also want to make sure that you write a clear subject line. Make it easy for your boss to see the request so that it becomes a priority for them.
You will also want to make sure that you write a clear subject line. Make it easy for your boss to see the request so that it becomes a priority for them. This part can be simple. It could look like this:
Subject: [Your Name] Vacation Request – [Dates]
Writing a clear subject line will also make it easy for your boss to find the email and follow up with you if need be.
Provide The Dates Of Your Vacation
The next step of the process is to provide detail around the dates and timing of your vacation. In addition to including the states in the subject line, reiterate the dates in the text of your email.
The next step of the process is to provide detail around the dates and timing of your vacation. In addition to including these dates in the subject line, reiterate the dates in the text of your email.
You can say something like, I would like to request the following dates off, and then list the dates.
Outline A Plan To Cover Your Responsibilities
In your vacation request email, be sure to outline a plan to cover your job responsibilities while you are away. Include the team members who will cover you and provide any relevant details. Describe important meetings, dates, and projects that will be covered. You want to give your boss a clear picture. Also, include a timeline for when you will be back in the office. If you work on a team, share this information with them beforehand so they know what is expected.
Provide Your Contact Details
In the section, you will want to provide details for how your boss can contact you. You might include an alternate phone number or email address, or in some cases even the address where you’ll be staying. Be sure that you also describe how often you will be checking these different forms of communication. For example, you might say something like “I will be unable to answer the phone, but I will be checking email once daily at 5 PM.”
Say Thank You And Sign Off
In the last section, thank your employer for considering your request. Using professional courtesy, show that you appreciate their time, and remember that you want to make it as easy as possible for your boss to say yes. Use is a standard, polite sign-off and you are off to the races!
Template For How To Request Vacation Via Email
Here is an easy to copy template that you can use to draft a simple vacation request email.
Subject: [Your Name] Vacation Request [Month/Date – Month/Date]
I’m writing to request vacation time from [dates]. During this time, I’ll be [describe travel or vacation plans] for [reason].
The following details describe how my projects will be handled by the team during my absence. I’ve confirmed coverage with each team member listed below.
- Project 1: [Name] is the point of contact for this project.
- Project 2: [Name] will take the lead on [meeting].
- Project 3: [Name] will submit the final report by [date].
- I will also complete [project 4] before I leave on [date].
During my vacation, I [will/ will not] have access to my cell phone. The number is [Number]. You can also reach me at [alternative number and/or your email address]. I [will/will not] be able to respond to emails while I am away. Upon your approval, I will fill out the company vacation request form.
Thank you for considering my request. Please let me know if you need any other information from me.
Don’t forget to proofread and check for spelling errors! I recommend using Grammarly to make sure that you send the best possible communications to your boss. One of the best ways to move up and show your value in your organization is to have clear and correct communication.
Vacation Request Follow-Up Email
If you don’t receive a response within a few days, it is appropriate to follow up. If it’s possible and you feel comfortable enough to follow up in person, you can have a conversation with your boss to make sure that the request is approved.
If you send a follow-up email, you can simply include the text from your previous email, and politely ask for their response. You can forward your initial request with an additional message such as:
Below is my vacation request for [Dates]. Would you please let me know if this request is approved so I can make the appropriate plans? Please let me know if you have any questions or need any additional information. Thank you for considering my request.
Time off is essential to your health, well-being, and future performance at work. But it’s not always easy to ask for — even if you deserve it. Use these guidelines to craft a simple vacation request email so you can enjoy your well-earned time off.
See you at the beach!