Time is down and work is up. Despite having relatively little paid vacation time, 77 percent of Americans have admitted to working while on vacation in the past year, according to a new TripAdvisor survey.
Out of the 10 countries — Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Spain, U.K. and U.S. — and 16,100 people polled, Americans receive an estimated 18 days of allotted vacation time, compared with an average of 24 days in other nations. The French top the list of allotted time with 31 vacation days per year — c’est la vie!
U.S. respondents — 76 percent of them — don’t feel that the amount of vacation time allotted is fair in comparison to what the rest of the world receives. Despite that majority, 91 percent of U.S. respondents have admitted to checking email while on vacation (and 37 percent don’t even consider it work, just routine); 85 percent respond to those emails; 45 percent check voice mail, and so on. This is because 65 percent of those respondents feel like there may be urgent work-related situations that will require their attention. Americans are also the most likely (18 percent) to feel guilty if they don’t work on vacation.
An average of just 40 percent of respondents from the other countries polled cite working while on vacation, despite receiving more vacation time.
Close to a third of respondents say a rise in Internet connectivity makes them feel the need to check in with work more; 39 percent say this connectedness has led to a greater expectation from employers to check in with the office.
So would more vacation time actually equal more relaxation? Currently, 66 percent of U.S. respondents say their vacations leave them feeling recharged, and 39 percent say they are better able to handle work stresses after taking a vacation. For those seeking more vacation time, they’re willing to sacrifice up to $350 per additional vacation day; 21 percent responded they would take this pay reduction in return for more time off.
Maybe the key to getting the most out of a vacation is to actually devote your full attention to being off, away and uninvolved with work (if you have the ability, which everyone should).
Have you ever worked during your “time off”? Why or why not?
–written by Brittany Chrusciel
Editor’s Note: IndependentTraveler.com is published by The Independent Traveler, Inc., a subsidiary of TripAdvisor, Inc.