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Home > Emails > How To Write Time off or Vacation Request Email (5 Samples & Templates)

How To Write Time off or Vacation Request Email (5 Samples & Templates)

Lawrie Jones
Written by
Lawrie JonesProfessional Tech Writer
Updated on:Jan 04, 2024

Whether you’re searching for sun or checking out a new city, we think booking a vacation is one of the best things you can do (before actually going!). But are you worried your boss won't say yes? Our guide on how to request some time off via email is totally perfect.

Successful vacation request emails stick to the correct formula. You’ve got to provide all the details, focus on the reasons for your request and send it at the right time. We can't help with the last one, but we can help with the first two. That’s why you’re here, right?

If you’re feeling lazy, start with our 5 vacation request email samples. Once you’ve reviewed our time off request emails, we take you through the structure and format for formal holiday requests. We end with some pro tips to help you get the request approved. We can almost smell the suncream…

Streamline Your Request with AI Technology

Before you explore our expertly crafted samples, simplify your email writing process by using our free AI email generator to create professional and courteous time off or vacation requests effortlessly.

What are vacation request emails?

Vacation request emails are an essential part of the working world. You can't simply take time off whenever you want; you must request it from your boss, explain why you're taking it, and mitigate the impact on the rest of the team.

It sounds complicated, but vacation request emails conform to the standard professional email format, which makes them easy to write and replicate. Once you've written one, you'll

Sticking to the standard format will give you the best chance of a positive result. You can check out the vacation request template in our 5 samples and templates below!

5 request time off email samples 

Vacation request emails can be split into some core categories, including annual leave requests, short-notice vacation requests, and urgent medical requests.

Here are 5 time-off request email samples to see the correct format. Or, if you're feeling uninspired, then copy and paste them!

Annual vacation request email

This classic template is your everyday annual vacation request email. This email template follows the standard format and provides all details of the requested vacation dates and the cover provided.

Dear [Recipient's Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to request my annual vacation for the coming year. I would like to take my vacation from [start date] to [end date]. During my absence, I have made arrangements for coverage. [Colleague's Name] will be handling my responsibilities and can be reached at [colleague's email address]. If there are any specific instructions or tasks that need to be taken care of in my absence, please let me know.

Thank you for your attention.

Best regards,
[Your Name]

Short notice vacation request email

Whether it's a last-minute weekend break or that concert you can't miss, this short-notice vacation request email is for you. We provide details of our vacation request, including all dates and times.

Dear [Recipient's Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to request a short-notice vacation from [Start Date] to [End Date].

Due to [reason], I am requesting this vacation on such short notice. I understand that it may cause inconvenience, but [explain the importance or urgency of the vacation].

I have spoken with [colleague/manager] who has kindly agreed to cover my tasks and responsibilities during my absence. I will ensure that all pending work is completed before I leave.

Please let me know if this vacation request is possible and if there are any procedures or forms that I need to complete in order to obtain approval.

Thank you for your attention and understanding.

Best regards,
[Your Name]

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Read also: How to Ask for a Raise via Email

Extended vacation request email

Sometimes a week won't do, and you'll want to request additional time off. This extended vacation request email explains why you're requesting time off. This is likely to be the first stage in arranging long-term leave, so send it ASAP!

Dear [Recipient's Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I wanted to reach out to discuss the possibility of extending my vacation time. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time off so far, but I feel that a week is not sufficient for me to fully recharge and address personal matters that require my attention.

I understand that this may disrupt the workflow, but I assure you that I have taken measures to ensure that my absence will not negatively impact the team. I have put together a comprehensive plan and have delegated my tasks to trusted colleagues who will handle them in my absence.

I kindly request an additional [number of days/weeks] off, starting from [start date] to [end date]. I am confident that this extended leave will allow me to return to work refreshed and more productive.

Thank you for considering my request. I am more than willing to discuss any concerns or alternative arrangements that may arise from this extension.

Best regards,
[Your Name]

Read also: How to request something emails (5 samples & templates)

Family vacation request email

Family vacations are full of fun and excitement – but don't book until you've got your leave request agreed upon. Give yourself the best chance of that happening by following the format in our family vacation request email.

Dear [Recipient's Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to request leave for a family vacation. The dates for the vacation are from [start date] to [end date]. I understand the importance of my presence at work, and I will ensure that all my pending tasks are completed or assigned to a colleague before I go on leave.

Please let me know if this vacation request can be accommodated, and if there are any specific procedures or forms that need to be followed. If there is any additional information required from my end, please do not hesitate to ask.

Thank you for your attention.

Best regards,
[Your Name]

Read also: How to write a meeting request email (5 samples & templates)

Medical or health-related vacation request email

Your health (and that of your family) is critical, and it's a legitimate reason for asking for time off. While providing some explanation is polite, don't feel the need to add too many details. Instead, follow the structure and stick to the principles in our health-related vacation request email.

Dear [Recipient's Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to request time off due to urgent medical reasons affecting both my health and that of my family.

I understand the importance of my role at the company, but this situation requires my immediate attention. I would be grateful if you could grant me [number of days] of leave starting from [start date] to [end date].

Rest assured, I will make every effort to delegate my responsibilities and ensure a smooth workflow during my absence.

Thank you for your understanding and prompt attention to this matter.

Best regards,
[Your Name]

Expert guide on how to write vacation request emails

If you've read the samples above, you've had a great start creating effective vacation request emails. This section explains the format, process, and principles for writing vacation requests that get results.

The key to writing vacation requests is understanding the power balance between you and your boss. They don't have to agree to your vacation request; you have to make a case for why they should grant it.

How? By using this structure:

  • Detail your leave request (dates & times)
  • Briefly explain why you're requesting vacation
  • Acknowledge the impact on the team – and your plans in place to reduce this
  • Express gratitude for considering your vacation request
  • Include a deadline

To make it as easy as possible for you to create vacation request emails, we've split the request structure into 3 sections:

  • Vacation request email subject line
  • Body copy
  • Sign-off/next steps

Let's kick off with the subject line.

Vacation request email subject line

Subject lines are the first thing your boss will read, so clarify your request. We also recommend

including critical information, including your name, dates, and the reason for your request.

Here are some sample subject lines to get you started:

  • Vacation request (insert dates)
  • Request for vacation (insert dates)
  • I’d like to book a holiday (insert date)
  • Urgent request for vacation
  • Can I request vacation?
  • Apologies for the short notice – can I request a vacation?
  • Short notice vacation request
  • Family vacation alert – Can I request time off?

Vacation request email body copy

Vacation requests work to a standard structure and familiar format that is easy to replicate – once you know it. The format works like a boss thinks – it’s logical, clear, and a bit boring. But this isn’t somewhere you want to get creative.

Vacation request emails have a single purpose (to get an agreement for the time off, obviously), but your boss doesn't have to agree. In fact, some bosses may take a lot of convincing to sign off your vacation request, so it's vital you provide them with everything.

Work through this structure to build your case!

Detail your leave request (dates & times)

"I would like to request vacation between (insert details). I have checked my vacation entitlement and have enough days left."

Briefly explain why you're requesting vacation

"I'm asking for vacation because (insert reasons)."

Acknowledge the impact on the team – and your plans in place to reduce this

"I know that this will impact the team, but I have already arranged cover. There should be no issues in delivering ongoing projects."

Express gratitude for considering your vacation request

"Thanks in advance for considering my leave request, and I hope you can agree to the dates!"

Vacation request email sign-off/next steps

Your vacation request is almost ready to send. But you don't want it to hang around in your manager's inbox, so add a CTA.

Include a deadline (if required).

"I'm hoping to book my vacation this week, so it would be great if you could let me know by Friday."

Before sending vacation request emails (or any email!), add your name, contact details, signature, and any other information required.

You're almost ready to push the button, but read our essential checklist before you do!

Vital tips for time off request emails!

Good bosses will read your vacation requests and respond straight away. Bad bosses are busy people and they may ignore, delete, and even deny they’ve received your email. Which one is yours?

Managers face a lot of pressure, and your vacation request may not be high up on their priority list, but we’re guessing it’s pretty high up on yours. Right?

If your email could be ignored, here are some simple tips to get the result you want.

It starts with the subject line. Say clearly what you want. Make it loud, proud, and impossible to ignore! This principle works for the start of your email, too. Clearly state the dates you want to take off. They can quickly see whether it's going to work or not.

Some bosses will automatically attempt to deny your vacation request because they’re worried about the impact on the team. Take away the stress and plan for them! Put in place a cover for vacation and explain what's happening in your request email. It’s harder for them to deny your vacation request if you’ve planned ahead.

Sometimes there may be legitimate reasons why you can’t have your leave request approved, so it pays to be flexible. While you might not get everything you want, flexibility will put you in the best position.

If you’re already working you’ll know the importance of writing accurate emails, but we’ll say it again. All email pros proofread, grammar check, spell check, and double-check every email before sending it. If you don’t, you should Don’t delay, it’s time to start today!

If you can’t find the right words, then try the HIX.AI email generator: Yes, the AI revolution is here, and it's changing how we work and live. HIX.AI can generate grammatically correct and precise messages on any subject, including emails requesting time off. Try it today and marvel at the power!


Vacations are vital in our busy lives. It’s a time to rest, relax, recuperate, and basically do all the stuff you can’t do at work.

To give yourself the best chance of your dates being agreed upon by your boss, write a professional time off request email. Sticking to the accepted format and providing all the information your manager might need is critical. Be clear and confident while making a compelling request for the time you want off. Once it's agreed, book your flights, pack your case, and enjoy!

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