Up to six million workers could benefit from extra holiday entitlement under new government proposals.
The proposals would see the statutory annual leave entitlement rise from 20 days per year to 28 days. Some employers currently include the eight bank holidays as part of a worker's 20 days entitlement and the new proposals would allow these workers to benefit from extra non-bank holiday time off.
Research from the Department of Trade and Industry revealed that the groups that stood to benefit the most from the proposals included women, part-time workers, low-paid workers and ethnic minorities.
DTI minister for employment relations Jim Fitzpatrick said: "Most companies already recognise that good holiday provision makes good business sense.
"Holiday entitlement can be a key factor in recruiting and retaining staff. Holidays are also important for productivity as they help minimise sick leave and keep people motivated and refreshed."
He added: "People work hard and they deserve a decent break. We want to make sure everyone gets the holiday they are entitled to."
The proposals, which are now undergoing a second public consultation, would bring the UK more into line with other European nations, the government said, such as Ireland, which has a 29 days minimum entitlement or Austria, with 38 days.