Home » 22 Bulletproof Excuses to Get Out of Work on Short Notice

22 Bulletproof Excuses to Get Out of Work on Short Notice

Do you want to get out of work on short notice? It’s a tricky process. Informing the employer and asking them about the urgent holidays can make you uncomfortable and even lead to suspicion from your boss. You may also think that this will harm your reputation in the company.

What if we tell you that it is entirely normal, even if you inform of  your absence or leave from work on the concise notice. But you always need to provide a powerful excuse so that it doesn’t harm your reputation, and also, there wouldn’t be any doubt in the employer’s mind.

Giving a terrible excuse, which is not even relatable to your personal life, can even lead to your termination from the company. So it’s better to think about an excuse and adequately deliver it to your employer.

Before moving to the best excuses, we will also look at the difference between a good excuse and a lousy excuse.

Good Vs Bad Excuse

A good excuse can be defined as a highly relatable and believable excuse for your employer. It can be anything like your relative passed away, you had a migraine attack last night, etc. It doesn’t sound like you are telling a lie because you just want to have a 1-day holiday or leave the office.

A lousy excuse is simply the opposite of a good reason, an excuse that is not relatable or believable. For example, if your employer knows that you don’t have any pet in your house, but you come up with an excuse for a pet, how can it be believable?

Any reason related to a pet can be considered an excellent example if you have a pet in your home. But if you don’t have pets, we strongly recommend avoiding using an extreme lie to your employer.

Instead of using this, you can say anything related to your health, family, etc.  A good excuse is believable and won’t require you to tell a lie over time for your employer to believe it. Even if your boss asks for extra information, they most likely care about you. They can even say that if you need a different holiday, you can take it, or ask for any help if you need it.

Furthermore, apart from a good excuse and a lousy excuse, nowadays, it’s a common habit of employees to use the pandemic as an excuse. For example, more than 50% of the employees used the reason for getting infected with coronavirus to avoid going to the office. The majority of times, the employees also arrange a fake medical receipt to ensure that their employer doesn’t doubt them.

This excuse will not help you, as your body signs/language will automatically indicate the opposite once you start going to your office. We will always recommend you to avoid this excuse or even use this pandemic as an opportunity. But we will always recommend that you don’t use this as an excuse until and unless it’s true.

22 Best Excuses to Get Out of Work

It is usual for an employee to ask for leave because we all are human and need a break. Believe us; your employer also doesn’t have any problem giving you a holiday or leave from work.

Several good excuses can be given to an employer if you want to go on concise notice.

This article will discuss the best excuses you can give to an employer to get out of work on brief notification.

1. Sickness


This is a common excuse given to the employer by almost 99% of the employees whenever they need an urgent holiday. The main point is that an employer cannot force anyone to come to the office and work because the excuse is related to health which is very important for a normal human being. Even the employer wants their employee to be in their best health to get good quality work.

If an employer cares about you, they will ask about what happened, so you must be very sure about your reasons, like a migraine attack, diarrhea, fever, etc. This excuse can also work when you need a half-day.

This is considered one of the simplest and the best excuses. We recommend you always tell them the sickness that can be easily treatable, like cold and fever, and not something requiring a month of clinical follow-up.

Bonus Read: How to Write a Sick Day Email? {Example Templates and Tips}

 2. You are Taking Care of a Family Member or a Child

You are Taking Care of a Family Member or a Child

Everyone knows that working peoples have a huge problem with taking care of their family members and a child. The majority of the working professionals hire a daycare to look after the child or family members. But this can also be used as an excuse by simply stating that your daycare is closed for today and there’s no one to look after the child or that family member/s. Make sure that you are talking about a family member who is old or sick, as a healthy adult individual can take care of a child and themselves. This can lead to doubt in the employer’s mind.

Be very careful while making an excuse because the employer wants a solid and legit reason to allow you to skip work or do work from home. This is considered an excellent excuse if you are not sick but are taking care of someone who is ill.

Family emergencies are widespread, and definitely, your employer will understand and will allow you to take a holiday even on short notice. We will learn about this excuse in more detail.

 3. Having a Family Emergency

Having a Family Emergency

This is also among the most compelling arguments, and they cannot ask for numerous follow-up inquiries. Even if they ask what happened, they will certainly not ask many questions in detail.

As we previously talked with family members, you may simply mention that your parents fell ill in this explanation. It is entirely up to you what reason you would like to provide to your company. Just be sure the information you’re giving them is accurate and acceptable.

4. You Have Food Poisoning

You Have Food Poisoning

Because most individuals realize how dangerous and unexpected food poisoning could be. It is among the most plausible and credible excuses to take off work, particularly the day before the job.

You don’t have to make up breathing sounds or provide a lot of information compared to other diseases. So, if you need to skip work at short notice and don’t want to face pressure from your supervisor to go in, this is a good enough excuse to get a day off.

They will, however, most probably expect you to arrive the following morning or at most shortly afterward.

5. You Have a Migraine

You Have a Migraine

Most managers know how terrible migraines can be; a headache is another solid reason for skipping a whole day of work with just a minor possibility of being questioned about that. Migraines typically go on their own, whether treated or not, so that you can return to work the following morning.

If your supervisor has any concerns, simply explain that you can hardly focus on your work and are currently lying while making this phone conversation. As a result, they’ll probably accept your justification and tell you to focus on health and return to the office when you are in your best health.

6. You Need to Care for a Sick Pet

You Need to Care for a Sick Pet

Pets can also be used as a pretext to skip work, but that’s not something you must do regularly. Simply inform your boss that your pet is not doing well, and you’ll have to go to an animal hospital visit or stay with them until they receive medicine. You can also try to make up regarding the pet vaccination appointment, etc.

7. Doctor’s Appointment

Doctor’s Appointment

As mentioned earlier, your employer always wants you to be in the best health. While these excuses will still get you outside of work immediately, your manager may ask why they won’t inform him sooner and want a medical letter or other evidence of a visit.

You may state that there was an urgent dental condition, and you wanted to get it evaluated as quickly as possible.

8. You’re Having Car Trouble

You’re Having Car Trouble

You can claim you’re experiencing car issues and waiting for somebody to check. You should only use this excuse if you use a car to get to your office instead of public transport. You can also add that you won’t be able to commute as you have a flat tire or the motor is wholly failed when driving.

This is the most fantastic option if you don’t want to go to work and just need to be absent for one day.

If you have a laid-back supervisor and a job that can be done from home, your employer may allow you to work from your residence for the entire week as your automobile is being repaired.

9. Household Problem

Household Problem

You can also claim that you need to stay at home due to some household issues. Those are valid reasons for not being able to go to work without citing any excuse related to illness or even other concerns. You should always consider whether that is reasonable before and use this as an excuse to stay at home.

10. Expecting a Delivery

Expecting a Delivery

More significant purchases, such as a couch, etc., may necessitate your attendance to sign for them and put them up over time. It’s not as good as the excused above because you can be asked to work from home. But still, it’s a good excuse not to travel. You can also add that the delivery person has not provided any estimated time for arrival, which means you’ll have to be present for several hours straight.

11. Transport Problem

Transport Problem

If you have to commute quite a distance from your home to your work and you have to rely on public transport, then one excuse can be that there was some issue with the transport network.

Maybe the trains were canceled, or the buses had broken down. Or there were no cabs available due to some union problems. These are usually localized problems, so your boss won’t come to know about them.

However, while making an excuse, make sure you say that you had started work as usual and you only came to know of the issue once you were an route, thus being unable to make it to work.

Also Read: How Far Is Too Far To Drive To Work?

12. You Have Allergies

You Have Allergies

Allergies can be nasty, especially the ones that make you sneeze or wheeze or makes your skin break out in rashes. You could say that you have been coughing a lot and have a runny nose due to some food allergy or being exposed to some chemicals. Or that there were mild rashes that you had to scratch constantly.

Although allergies are not contagious and are very specific to the person who has it, your boss will still not want you beside their other employees when you are coughing so much. It is also enough to make anyone sick, and you can say you won’t be able to concentrate on work even if you come to work.

Your boss is sure to give you the day off. Just make sure you don’t say it is anything too severe, or you may have to provide medical documents.

13. Taking Care of Mental Health

Taking Care of Mental Health

It is alright to feel overwhelmed at work sometimes, and taking a day off to calm yourself down is perfectly alright. You can tell your boss that you have a last-minute appointment with your therapist, and most employers today are mindful of the mental well-being of their employees.

They might even give you an extra day off so that you can completely rejuvenate yourself and come back to work with full productivity.

14. Parents Arrived Unexpectedly

Parents Arrived Unexpectedly

This is a very good excuse to get out of work at short notice. You can tell your employer that your parents, who live in another city or state, decided to come unannounced to surprise you, and you would like to spend the day with them.

You could say your family is important to you just as much as your work is. A considerate employer will give you the day off unless there is something very important going on in the office. You could also say the same thing about friends who are visiting you from another city or country.

15. Issues in the Apartment

Issues in the Apartment

You can use some kind of home emergency as an excuse to get out of work at short notice. There could be a burst pipe, the heating may have broken down, or there is some issue with the water supply.

These are very valid reasons to take off from work, especially if you live alone and there is no specific management in your apartment building that looks into these.

Even if you live in an independent house, maybe your landlord told you to take care of it yourself. You can tell your boss you have to fix everything and have to be at home so that the technicians can start their work and solve the issue at the earliest.

16. Attending a Community Charity Event

Attending a Community Charity Event

Taking part in a community event is one thing that your boss will not be able to say no to. Your eagerness to take part in a community event makes you a good citizen, and your boss cannot possibly tell you not to attend it.

You can say something about attending an event to raise money for the homeless or that you help with a stray animal shelter. Although you can use it as an excuse, it would help if you become a part of an organization and volunteer from time to time for a noble cause. It would make you feel good as well.

17. Bank or Utility Issues

Bank or Utility Issues

Bank or utility issues are very important, and you can make an excuse that something is wrong and the bank or utility office wants to sort it out with you in person. That will give you a good reason to take off from work for at least half a day.

However, make sure that when you speak of banks, there is no connection between your office to your bank. You can use this excuse for any other public office as well, as long as they are not connected to your office.

18. Jury Duty

Jury Duty

Another excuse that you can give your boss is that you have jury duty to attend. Not attending jury duty can be punishable, and you can be fined and penalized. You can tell your boss that you have jury duty to attend, and the summons came at the last minute. However, be sure to go through your state laws to ensure you can make this excuse.

19. Religious Event

Religious Event

Another excuse you can make to get out of work is to say you have a religious event or a community event to attend. Depending on your ethnicity and descent, there could be some rituals or festivals that are very specific to your community. You could say you have to attend or at least help prepare for it.

Since you are close to your roots, you want to be a part of these festivals. Since many employers are taking inclusiveness seriously, they will probably grant you leave since they would not want to appear discriminatory.

20. You are Moving

You are Moving

Another excuse you may give to get out of work is that you are moving from your old apartment to your new place. Moving requires a bit of work, and you have to shift all your belongings. You may not have a lot of things to move, but your boss does not know that!

You could say that you have to be present when your items are loaded, and you also need to unload them and arrange everything on arrival. Your boss will surely understand and give you your day off.

21. Minor Injury

Minor Injury

A good excuse to get out of work is to say that you had a minor injury. You can say that you sprained your neck or back while trying to lift something and will not be able to drive to work or sit in front of the computer the whole day. You can say your doctor also advised a day or rest with an ice pack.

However, be sure not to exaggerate or say something that will have a visible mark. For example, do not say you cut your finger badly or hit your head since the next day, your boss will notice the absence of any kind of bandages. Just keep it simple and something that you can recuperate from with a day of rest.

22. You Donated Blood

You Donated Blood

A very excuse to get out of work is to say you donated blood for someone due to an emergency. Not only is this a noble gesture, but donating blood can also make you feel light-headed and sleepy.

It would be unwise to go to work, and even if you do, you will not be able to concentrate properly. Tell your boss that you would like to take a day off and rest, and your boss is surely going to understand.

Bad Excuses and Mistakes

If you’ve read all thus far, you’ll have plenty of reasons to skip work. To sum up, there are a few blunders to prevent and lousy justifications for calling in sick.

First, you should not say everything that does not make any sense. Don’t present a justification that seems like you had prepared something days ago. This implies that you didn’t make plans or did not warn them soon.

When you want a leave-in short notice, carefully consider how well the explanation will look. “Would it sound reasonable that I’d just find out at the last moment?” Or else, come up with another reason to stay at home.

Overexplaining is another major blunder to avoid. In explaining why you probably wouldn’t be able to turn up to work, you should never go into great depth.

If you claim your child is sick, your might not have to list all of their symptoms as evidence that they’re not doing well. You shouldn’t need to try to sneeze or change your voice on the phone, even if you’re going to say that you’re sick. Simply be clear and direct, state your broad acceptable reason for missing work, quit speaking, and then see how the manager reacts. In calling for sick leave, it’s usually best to say as little as possible.

Get one of the explanations from the list; don’t provide a very brief explanation. Even the most important reasons can be undermined if you talk more or try to “sell” your description after your supervisor has most likely previously accepted it. And once you’ve presented the essentials, quit speaking and then let them answer.


There are days when we all want to take a break from work at the last moment. Given that making excuses to leave work is a part of everyone’s job, we should guarantee that we’re educated so that our employers do not dispute our justifications.

Suppose you utilize one of the justifications mentioned above and inform your boss briefly and directly that you won’t be likely to arrive the next day. In that case, you’ll have the greatest likelihood of obtaining another day off without really being suspected. Call and email your company for this process to run more smoothly. They should be aware that you have your reasons/ explanation. Always add that you are willing to return to work the next day. You can notify your supervisor via email, which sounds more official, or by telephone conversation or text, which expresses the urgency of the reason.

Read More About: Is it Illegal to Quit a Job Without Notice? 3 Things You Should Know