Thursday, 2 April 2009

Travelling on Unpaid Leave

Did you read about CIMB offering their staff the option of taking unpaid leave as one of the bank's cost cutting measure? If you haven't, click here: Group to extend leave programme to all staff.

I wish my company would offer this option to its staff too. If given so, I would take all 6 months to travel the world. For money, I'll work as an au pair, pluck apples, teach English, or whatever to keep the dream alive.

Ever since the travel bug hit me, I've always yearned to travel the world. But being tied down to a full-time job doesn't offer me the freedom to do whatever I want, whenever. There's always a project coming up and all leave is frozen.

To go for a backpacking trip requires at least 2 weeks. And to get such a long leave approved is quite impossible in the company I work for, unless it's during the year-end festive season, which by the way, is one of the worst times to travel because it's the peak period in many countries and everything is costly and places crowded.

In my travels I've met many youths on long trips around the world. They are usually young and adventurous with the world at their feet. Many of them have just completed college or quit their jobs to pursue their dream of travelling the world.

When I meet people like them, I'll reminisce about my missed opportunity to travel after completing my tertiary education because of the perennial issue - lack of money. Moreover I could not find a travel buddy then (and even now!) because most of my friends were economically challenged like me.

Today I have the means and the guts to travel alone, but no time. How ironic can life get. I've done a fair bit of travel, but there's still many more places to visit and experience. But at this point in time, I can only wish ... for 6 months unpaid leave.


Salt N Turmeric said...

For CIMB to cut cost they only need to give top mgt a pay cut, reduce entertainment(entitlement), bring back the staff in HK and etc. That alone is enough to let the lower rank staff to get a paid or at least half pay leave. :P

Anonymous said...

I'll be "forced" to take unpaid leave soon, for a few days every month. What I plan to do is to try to accumulate for a few months, then take all at one shot, since I should be going to South Africa end of this year. If that materialises, I do not need to even take any of my paid annual leave!

Julie Lim said...

Farina a.k.a. Salt N Turmeric,

In any financial crisis, the kuli(s) in a company will have to take the brunt, while top management continue to prosper.

You sound like you've work for CIMB before ;-)

Julie Lim said...


You're one lucky woman to be 'forced' to take unpaid leave. And smart strategy in accumulating the unpaid leave :-)

South Africa is one of my must-visit destinations!

Salt N Turmeric said...

Julie, iv worked with cahb (before they became cimb group) and cafm (now cimb-principal asset mgt) before. ;)

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