'More Indians prefer to semi-retire before hanging up boots'

Mumbai: Over half of the working population in urban areas of the country will prefer cutting down on their working hours before completely retiring from jobs.

"Traditionally, retirement meant a sudden switch from a busy full-time work routine to a more relaxed lifestyle...over half of the working age people are planning to semi-retire before they stop work completely," says a survey conducted by British lender HSBC.

The survey further notes that 56 per cent of those wishing to partial retirement wants to stay in the same job, but work fewer hours, while 32 per cent are planning a change in career as well as reduced hours.

The survey is based on interviews of over 1,000 Indians, mostly from urban centres. Stating that many people semi-retire by choice, it pointed out that 35 per cent of those interviewed chose to semi-retire because of the stress, 30 per cent opted for it to
spend more time with family and friends, while for 17 per cent it was health reasons and physical demands.

"For many people, semi-retirement is a positive choice. Almost half (46 per cent) of retirees say they chose semi-retirement to help them keep physically and mentally active before stopping full-time work," it said.

On the retirement plans, home improvement and gardening tops with 43 per cent, followed frequent holidays (42 per cent) and extensive travel (31 per cent), it said. Forty-seven per cent said they would like to get involved with a charity or do voluntary work, while 37 per cent want to learn a new skill or pursue a hobby in retirement, it said.

Age also plays a part in the wishes, says survey pointing out that those in the 25-44 age bracket showed a willingness for frequent holidays and travelling extensively, while those over 45-age bracket want to continue working more.

It said the prospect of financial responsibilities or eing financially dependent weighs on people's minds when contemplating on retirement.

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