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Top 8 Best Excuses To Skip Work

Updated on June 16, 2017

Let us be honest. All of us have, at some point, skipped work to stay at home, go outdoors for recreation or simply take a break.

While we have our own set of standard excuses, the excuse needs to be a good one that will not arouse the suspicion of the boss or other co-workers. Not that they don't do it themselves.

NOTE: Remember to stay away from the likes of Facebook and Twitter. Especially, if you are reporting sick or claiming an outdoor crisis like car trouble.

Here are some of the popular excuses used by people like you and me, that is, unless you are a workaholic or you are competing for the best attendance reward of the year, no offence meant :)

Common Excuses


1. Health Reasons

This is the most frequently used reason in the history of excuses. Cold and fever, sore throat, migraine, stomach upset, the choices are endless. Not only to skip work, you can also bail out on invitations and dates using these "general-purpose excuses".


It is not uncommon to be down with cold and fever all of a sudden. The best thing about the fever excuse is that it allows you to be sick for multiple days. After all, fever cannot go away in a day, not when we don't want it to :) We have different types of fever to choose from. For example, you can get the flu one time, while the next time, you might be hit by the viral fever.


Migraine is a great excuse for a one day no-show. Migraine can happen to anyone at any time. How can we even work with a throbbing headache. How inconsiderate of the boss to even expect that we will turn up in office when our head is about to explode. And obviously, they have never heard of the harmful effects of the aspirin.


Stomach upset or diarrhoea is another good reason for a one-day miss. Everyone knows that the canteen food sucks. If your boss has a problem with you having frequent stomach upset, maybe he should try to get more budget for good quality food. If you want to extend it to more than a day, well you can always get a food poisoning or an allergy. Of course, you will need to visit the doctor for this, who will definitely prescribe a day's rest.

I sprained my back, need to rest.


2. Housework Injury

You were trying to lift something heavy during a spring cleaning activity. After all, we are civilized humans and need to keep our houses clean.

On one of those cleaning instances, you got a severe sprain or pulled a muscle and now you are unable to move. And don't forget, sprains don't go away in a day either.

If boss asks you "why don't you hire a housekeeper", remind him how much you get paid.

Had a Late Night


3. Late Night Work

Your boss asked you to finish an urgent work by evening. The work was of course not doable in a day, but you stayed up late the whole night to finish that report. Or maybe you didn't, because you are a super-fast worker. But that doesn't mean you can be given unreasonably less time to finish your tasks. It is utter injustice if, on top of that, you are expected to attend work the next day. Even animals need rest.

Tell the boss of your night-in, in case he already didn't know about it and assumed that the super-wizard in you would just snap a finger and the report would magically prepare itself. The lack of sleep has obviously taken a toll and you woke up late feeling extreme fatigue. No point coming to work when half the day is already over.

My Car Just Didn't Start


4. Car Trouble

Driving has its advantages. If you stay relatively far from your workplace and drive to work everyday, you have many options to choose from:

  • Car has broken down
  • Cannot not find your car keys
  • Engine will not start because battery is down
  • Car is emitting smoke, you need to get it checked.
  • Car got towed away. You had to run a quick errand and had parked in a wrong spot thinking it would be done soon, but it did not.

Sitting in Traffic


5. Traffic Jam

If you live in a crowded city, traffic jam can sometimes come to your rescue, especially if you are trying to skip work and have already used your health or injury excuses.

You inform your colleague that you are completely stuck on a jam-packed road, with vehicles moving only inches every hour. It is nearly noon and you don't know when you will reach. Finally you just decide to turn and go back home as you are already too exhausted.

How will anyone ever come to know that you were actually plopped up on your sofa, having muted the TV remote while making this call. Do you want to make it more realistic? Just play a YouTube video of a busy street and increase the volume on your computer so that it is audible on your phone.

6. Baby's Day In

If you have a young kid, your best defence is the nanny taking one or more sick days. You and your spouse therefore have to take turns and baby-sit at home. This works out only if your office does not offer crèche facilities for parents.

Alternately, you can say that your kid is not keeping well. So you need to stay back and look after him/her.

7. Pick-up or Drop at the Airport or Station

Your family member, close friend or relative is either arriving or leaving town. It is only natural that you have to pick them up or drop them at the train station or the airport. Of course, on the way and back, there is no escape from traffic, which will make it a half day activity. So it is better to take off from work.

8. Friend in Trouble

if you like drama and want to be the king/queen of bizarre excuses at office, you can always blame it on a friend who got booked for driving under influence. The friend is sitting haplessly in the police station, waiting to be rescued by you because he/she did not know who else to call.

A lesser dramatic reason would be the age-old car trouble. Only this time, your friend is facing it and is stranded in a god-forsaken place. The car service people have not arrived yet, so you had to rush to his/her rescue.

DOs and DONTs


Quick Tips

Now, these may not excuses all the time. We can genuinely run into these situations. Genuine or not, one always needs to make sure to do the following:

  • Do not repeat the same excuses too often.
  • Don't oversell it. When informing about your leave, don't give too much explanation.
  • Avoid roads that are en-route to your workplace, so that you don't get spotted by your boss or co-workers out for a smoke or a lunch.
  • Avoid posting photos of yourself enjoying your day on social networking sites.

What is your most favourite excuse for a day off?

Choose one of the following:

See results

© 2015 Ritu Temptor


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    • temptor94 profile image

      Ritu Temptor 2 years ago from India

      Oh yes, bad weather is a great excuse :) Snow, rain, storm, some good choices are there. Thanks for reading.

    • Chriswillman90 profile image

      Krzysztof Willman 2 years ago from Parlin, New Jersey

      Funny but true. I've done the sick day thing, I've also used bad weather, snow, to get out of work

    • temptor94 profile image

      Ritu Temptor 2 years ago from India

      Thanks Miran. LOL same here :)

    • profile image

      Miran Shuleta 2 years ago

      This made me chuckle as I have used most of these excuses before in the past.

      Very cool Hub!