Thursday, April 16, 2009

Are You Using All Your Vacation Days?

A recent survey conducted by found that 34 percent of employed Americans will not use all of their vacation days for the year, citing . work-related pressure as one of the main reasons.

In a recent news release, Tim MacDonald, general manager of said, "The stress associated with the current economy makes the need for time away from work even more important than ever, and it's unfortunate that one-third of Americans won't use all of their vacation days this year."

The survey also discovered that people are taking fewer extended vacations, with the number of adults who plan to take a two-week vacation falling to 10 percent in 2009 from 14 percent in 2008. Some of the other findings from the survey show that on average, Americans reported receiving 13 vacation days in 2009, one day less than the previous three years, and women are more likely than men to feel guilty about taking time off from work (40 percent of women vs. 29 percent of men).

I a strong believer of time away from work to rejuvenate and refresh. A rule in our house is that we always have a vacation planned so that we have something to look forward to. We spend so much of our lives working, that we deserve to take vacation time so spend with family, and to unwind from a constantly busy schedule. Employers give you paid time off as part of your compensation package, so use it! Taking a vacation doesn't mean that you are not loyal to your employer, so don't feel guilty about taking time off that you deserve.

With flights, accommodation and activities at the lowest prices we have seen in years, now is a great time to think about your next vacation and how you can make the most of your well-deserved break from the office. Even if you decide on a staycation (a stay at home vacation) there are plenty of things at home to keep you entertained at an affordable price, such as museum and zoo visits, trips to the local park and attending local festivals. Thanks to Time Inc. for the staycation pic!


A Maui Blog said...

Wise advice (the encouragement to take vacation to rejuvenate). I am so guilty of not taking a much needed vacation. Since I lve on Maui, I am now planning a "staycation" - we all need it.

Kris Nelson said...

Very true. I remember early on in my young career where I was accumulating vacation days like rollover minutes just because there was so much work to do and not enough time to do it in. Once I started planning and taking our 2-week trips to Maui, we were hooked. Not only by the true magic of beauty of Hawaii, but planning, counting down, and enjoying 2 weeks out of the year where nothing else in the world matters. What a great feeling.

I like your house rule about always having a vacation planned and having something to look forward to. While our annual 2 week vacations to Maui are amazing, they still are way too far apart. To fill the gap, we have a secondary, extended-weekend spot up in Wisconsin that we like to visit every other month or so. In fact, we were on our way up there the day you published this. :)

I, too, encourage co-workers and other friends to be sure to at least take some time to get away and enjoy the rest of your life outside of the office walls. It's a great way to reconnect with your other interests, and with your family, which is probably the main reason you work so hard in the first place.

Great topic for a post!