How to Write an Annual Leave Email/Letter for Office (With Template)

Labor legislation entitles each employee to a minimum number of leave days per year. In addition, each company is free to offer supplementary leave days to particular job positions, to reward loyalty towards the company, or as benefits to attract new employees. Some companies even have an unlimited vacation policy, allowing employees to take as many leave days as they want as long as they finish their tasks. However, when the employees want to benefit from the leave they're entitled to they must notify their superiors or the HR Department and request approval to miss work.

Each company has its own vacation policy and communication tools. Some prefer an official email addressed to everyone involved, from managers to the HR Department. Others accept a less formal notice made by phone or chat. In some companies, you must inform only the direct manager, while others have a strict protocol and a long list of people who must be noticed by the employee seeking annual leave. Especially when employees ask for an extended leave, the annual leave letter becomes extremely important and must include relevant information.

Also, the company's policy and culture aren't the only ones that matter. You must consider the way your company keeps track of time-off and leave. For example, if your company uses annual leave management software, all HR tasks related to tracking, planning, notifying, updating, or reporting will be done automatically by the HR system.

Table of contents:
  1. Frequently asked questions
  2. General tips to consider before submitting an annual leave application
  3. Annual leave request email
  4. Annual leave request template (3 free templates)

Note: With the HR analytics solutions from LeaveBoard, you will know exactly when an employee marks a new year in service, or has the next birthday, or celebrates 40 years.


Frequently asked questions

What is an annual leave notice letter?

An annual leave letter is an official letter you send to your manager or HR Department to request leave days. It's usually sent via email either by you or automatically by the HR software your company uses. 

An annual leave letter should include all the information your superiors need to know personal and contact data of the employee, date of request, the period of absence, the number of necessary leave days, and other helpful information. Although the people in charge probably have access to your leave balance, it's probably a good idea to mention how many leave days you have left. 

How to write an annual leave letter/email?

The first thing you need to do is find out what format your company requires. They may already have a template or give you helpful directions on what information to put in the letter. If you don't have a specific format to follow, write the letter/email using a neutral tone, and make sure you include the following data:

  • The recipient name or function
  • Your name and function
  • The reason for sending the letter – requesting leave days
  • The number of leave days you ask and their dates
  • The acknowledge of the fact that you didn't use all the leave days you were entitled to
  • Your signature.

Because leave letters can be sent using a personal email address, don't forget to write your email subject and make it straightforward and concise. For example, you can write "Annual leave request" in the Subject field. Also, write your complete name and function to avoid mistakes. Include greetings and a professional email closing but keep the text short.

The annual leave application refers to the number of leave days an employee is entitled to and doesn't need to include justifications. The employees can use their leave days as they desire. However, suppose the employee asks for a more extended period of absence. In that case, it's usually a good idea to mention that they are available for urgencies, have discussed the absence with their managers, and have found a colleague to cover their tasks.

Note: LeaveBoard allows to select a backup person for each request.


General tips to consider before submitting an annual leave application

Send your yearly leave letter in advance to give your supervisors enough time to manage your absence. In case of rejection, you'll be able to reconfigure your vacation plans too.

Follow the company's protocol. If you aren't familiar with it, call the HR Department and ask what you should do.

Inform your colleagues as well, especially if you plan an extended leave. If your absence affects other people, they should be aware of it. Your colleagues can take care of your clients or urgent tasks, and your managers can change task planning to maintain the team's productivity. 

If you'll be out of the office for more than one day or have a busy schedule, set up an out-of-office automatic response to inform those who send you an email of your absence.


Annual leave request email

Subject: Annual Leave Application

Dear [Mr.] / [Mrs.] [RECIPIENT],

I work as [JOB_DESCRIPTION] in the [DEPARTMENT] and I write to you to request approval to use [X] leave days between [DATE] and [DATE]. 

As this will be a long absence, I will make sure that I hand over my responsibilities to another employee from our team. I have already received my supervisor’s approval. In case of an emergency, I will be available at [CONTACT DETAILS]. Please let me know if you need additional information.

OPTIONAL: According to my leave balance I have [X] leave days left. Therefore, my current request doesn’t exceed my annual leave entitlement.

I will be grateful if you approve my leave application.

Best regards,

[YOUR_NAME]


Annual leave request letter template

If your company doesn't provide you with an annual leave letter template, you can make your own or download one here. It's better to use the same format each time you request leave. You save time and energy, and it looks more professional than putting together a new letter each time. Check out the following examples:

Example 1: Annual leave request letter sample

Download the annual leave request letter


Example 2: Annual leave request letter template

Download the annual leave request letter


Example 3: Professional annual leave request letter

Download the Professional annual leave request letter

Boost productivity with an annual leave management software

When productivity is the key, you need to leverage systems that can take manual work and automate it. When you cut 50% of such activities, you gain time to focus on what really matters.

Simple employee leave management.

Dynamic request time off form.

Balance of leaves always updated.

Request leave with the LeaveBoard app

History of employee leaves

Automate your leave request with the easy to use online HR software that sends automatic email requests to the line managers.

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