Revealed: the most unbelievable reasons for calling in sick after the Work Christmas party

Yes, we know, it's barely November, but already plans are afoot for the office Christmas party - and the day after.

It is, after all, highly anticipated annual event in the calendar, with workers across the nation using it as a chance to get dressed up and let their hair down with colleagues.

But, what happens when it all goes a little too far, and colleagues are left embarrassed by their antics or too hungover to make it into work the next day?

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A new survey of 1,000 UK workers, conducted by the UK’s largest indoor go-karting company TeamSport, looked into the best, worst and most bizarre excuses UK workers have made when calling in sick the day after the office Christmas party.

Of those who admitted to calling in sick, a staggering 60 per cent admitted it was because they were simply too hungover.

Interestingly, the reasons for calling in sick were very different for male and female respondents. Women didn’t want to attend work the next day, as they had embarrassed themselves at the party (12% versus 6% of men), or they argued with a colleague (10% versus 6% of men).

For the men, they felt they needed time to “recharge their batteries” (23% versus 14% of women) or they didn’t want to face work commitments such as meetings (6% versus 2% of women).

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The actual excuses given to bosses for a no-show the next day included being stricken down with food poisoning (16%), feeling sick (11%), a sudden case of a stomach bug (5%) and a broken down car (3%).

Rather less plausible excuses included:

“I forgot to put the washing machine on, I’ve no clean clothes”

“I won’t be able to make it to the office this morning, I’ve bruised my brain”

“Sorry I can’t come in today. I’ve swallowed a spider”

“I won’t be in the office today; my ears are sore from the music at the party last night”

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The report also considered the differences between industries, highlighting the worst culprits for calling in sick. These were:

Information technology (24%)

Business, consulting and management (19%)

Creative arts and design (18%)

Property and construction (12%)

Engineering (12%)

However, other sectors were keen to attempt work the day after. Marketing and PR, along with HR and Recruitment, reported only 3% of employees calling in sick.

It seems that workers in the property and construction industry are the most promiscuous, with nearly one in three (29%) admitting to getting intimate with a colleague at the party, and this being the reason they didn’t want to face work the next day.

Dominic Gaynor, managing director of TeamSport, was naturally more keen on team-building-style events rather than the boozier affairs which can lead to absence the next day “It can be difficult to drag yourself out of bed the day after a huge work party,” he said. “Avoiding a party fuelled by alcohol means there is less opportunity for workers to come up with these bizarre excuses and call in sick.”

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More funny, creative and even reasonable excuses from workers across the nation can be found at the TeamSport blog here: