How to Take a Proper Vacation When You're Self Employed

When you're self-employed, it can feel like you have no time to yourself at all. Taking a vacation? That seems out of the question! How are you going to keep your business afloat while you're floating around in the pool? Going on vacation when you're self-employed may be challenging, but it is possible – with careful planning. Here are some things to plan out so you can have the guilt-free, stress-busting vacation that you so badly need.

It's all about timing

Self-employed work can often ebb and flow. Is there a specific time of year when your work has a natural lull? If so, this will be the perfect time to go away, so you don't have the stress of work projects passing you by. If this isn't applicable, try to book your vacation well in advance. This will help you to map out projects and take on new work accordingly. Since you're the boss, you can take leave when you like, so try to book off-season to make it cheaper.

Set expectations in advance

Yes, it can be hard when you are the whole business. Will everything go into meltdown while you're away? Not if you tell people in advance. Let customers and clients know well ahead of time that you'll be taking leave, and ask them to send over any queries or work in plenty of time. This way you can get most bases covered before you go away. Plan to work longer days in the run-up to your vacation so you can leave having finished all your tasks.

Set your out-of-office

Your vacation is so you can relax and let go. It's usually best to tell clients that you will not be contactable and stick to this. There's no good setting an out-of-office saying you won't be checking emails until the end of the month if you then respond to a clients email straight away. Set boundaries and stick to them, unless in exceptional circumstances. You need to enjoy your time away, not be glued to the laptop!

Have your mail dealt with

Does your self-employed business receive postal mail? When you're away, you might be worried that it's all building up, and important bills and notices are going unopened. You can set up a virtual business address at This means you can actually access your mail virtually online, so if you need peace of mind, you can check it there and then.

Dealing with finances

If you're self-employed, taking a vacation might mean missing out on income. If this is the case, try to make plenty of savings before your vacation. This can be frustrating since you might feel like you're paying for your trip twice. But having that extra support can help you to relax and enjoy the adventure. You could set up a savings account and transfer a small amount each month as a buffer fund for when you take a vacation.

Depending on what your business is, you might be able to explore the option of passive income. This takes a lot of time and investment to get the ball rolling, but once you've got a passive income stream, you can be making some money without physically working, This is unlikely to be enough to cover your normal expenses, but it can be a useful buffer. Find ideas at

Go on, take that vacation you deserve!

This post was made in paid partnership.

Photo by Julius Silver from Pexels


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