More than 39% of this week’s respondents are entitled to 3-4 weeks of vacation time, and a nearly matching 34.5% said they get even more than that. Roughly 24% get 2-3 weeks, and about 3% get two weeks or less.
But what was really impressive was the fact that three-quarters of this week’s respondents said they plan to take every bit of the vacation they are entitled to. As one reader noted , “I absolutely, positively will get all my vacation days in. Us HR folks need all the ‘mental health’ days we can get!” a sentiment echoed by this reader : “I will use 100% – got to stay sane somehow!”
One post-merged reader noted that this year’s vacation couldn’t be carried over, which “…should greatly reduce the number of vacation martyrs who brag about how much vacation time they have/didn’t use the prior year, while routinely complaining about how stressed out they are.” The “vacation martyr” theme showed up several times, and in various ways, including the reader who said, “…I have little patience with people who complain that they are just too busy and/or valuable to use their vacation time. If they’d spend the same amount of time working that they do complaining they can’t take their vacation time…they could take their vacation time. But more importantly, I try to follow these words of wisdom: ‘The only martyrs I know are dead.'”
There were ex-martyrs among the respondents, including the reader that observed, “Using all 4 weeks this year. Even managed to take 1 week leftover from last year, a week of paternity this year. I am done giving my flesh all year only to eat my vacation as well. Truth is, I can finally accept that the world won’t stop if I am not here.”
There was, of course, the other camp. As one reader noted, “I have not yet used it all in one year. The most I have ever taken in one year is 3 weeks. If I ever figure out a way to use it all and still get my work done, I’ll let you know.”
Or, as another cautioned, “The underlying question is: Take 2+ weeks vacation and a) increase one’s ‘meds’ upon returning to an overloaded e-mail, v-mail, snail-mail, confidential memos, etc., etc. OR don’t take time away and b) increase one’s ‘meds’ BECAUSE you’re not on vacation. Either way, the pharmaceutical and beverage stocks win.”
One reader who had just returned from some time off cautioned, “I know it’ll take me at least three weeks to catch-up with what was left on my desk while I was away — still worth it,” and went on to observe, “It was great to be able to read your daily newsletters to find what happened while I was away. (When do you get to take a vacation?)”
But this week’s Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who observed, “I have 3 weeks along with a week carried over from last year. I hope to get three in this year and the funny thing is I am taking a vacation day today and answering this e-mail.”
Thanks to everyone who participated in our survey!
Since I work in Scotland, I am lucky enough to enjoy 6 weeks of holiday time each year (that's from day one with the company). The other nice benefit is that our employer prefers if we take at least one 'two to three week' holiday per year. I plan to use each and every day! What a lucky wee lass I am!
I have to fit in (e) more than 4 weeks. That is only because I rolled over more than a week from last year.
I will most likely take (b) more than half of it, but only barely more than half.
My answer is (c). It could also be (d) because I have 3 weeks coming and that falls under both categories - I used to work with actuaries, so what can I say?
Answer is (c) 2-3 weeks vacation this year.
I absolutely, positively will get all my vacation days in. Us HR folks need all the "mental health" days we can get!
I received 3 weeks (15 days) vacation yesterday (My anniversary) and 7 days choicetime (sick days or whatever). I carried over 1 weeks vacation from last year.
I will take off the full 22 days as our company does not pay for unused vacation.
I had 15 days off squeezed between May and July 15th so that I wouldn't lose them this year.
I could get use to not coming to work....if the paycheck wouldn't stop being deposited to my bank account.
e and a,
It is very hard work to fit in the 7 weeks I have for this year ... but someone's gotta do it!
I have 3 weeks of vacation a year. I have taken approximately half of it so far and I hope to take most of the remaining time by calendar year-end.
PS: I thoroughly enjoy starting my day w/NewsDash. As a governmental pension plan attorney, I especially enjoy reading issues involving those non-ERISA plans.
Vacation entitlement - 5 weeks (after 20 years of service). Am I going to use it all - you bet I am! I don't leave my money lying on the company's table.
I get 5 weeks of vacation and I'm required to use 100% of it every year. That usually means that I'm kicked out of my office around mid-December to take what I call "forced" vacation.
I get 4 weeks of vacation. That is great, but... to take off a week I will work at least 60 hours the week before vacation. Then when I return, I'll need to work at lease 60 hours for another three or four weeks. Somehow that just doesn't seem like it is worth the trouble to take off. But I do enjoy the time away with my hubby. He only gets one week and he takes the company cell phone so that he can be reached at all times while we are away.
If a vacation week is defined as 5 business days then e and b. Owing to the merger I've got 40 days and expect to take a large part of it and roll over the rest.
I will use 100% - got to stay sane somehow!
On your vacation survey, I get 4 weeks of vacation and hope to take all of it (although I've only used 3 days so far).
I get 5 weeks plus a floating holiday. I have already taken 2 weeks and intend to get it all in this year but can carry up to 5 days over to next year.
Here we earn Paid Time Off (PTO). I can earn 15 PTO days per year. So, if I don't get sick or need any minor surgeries, I can take three weeks vacation. This year, however, I did end up in the hospital for four days, so that ruined my vacation to Virginia in July. Maybe I can stay healthy next year. (sic)
I answer (e) when I count paid days off that I generally use to extend vacations. To me, a day out of work is a day out of work, no matter if it's vacation or Labor Day or Thanksgiving Day.
My bonus question's response is (a) with a caveat that says a few days may splash over into the early part of 2004. Being a big NCAA college basketball fan, and season ticket holder for the UConn Huskies mens and womens teams, it is not unusual to take off several days to go to away games or take in the entire Big East Tournament.
Hey, maybe I do have a life outside of work. Thanks for reminding me.
Inquiring minds want to know if Nevin will take his vacation this year.
Good morning! I am lucky enough to have 27 days of vacation, and I take every flippin' one of them! I encourage everyone to enjoy every vacation day they are granted, as time away is good for the soul...
I have 6 weeks vacation, I've been with the company for 20 years, that includes Personal and Sick time. Six total weeks off for whatever reason. I will use it all, or lose it. I can take pay for 5 days if I want at the end of the year.
E) But its 27 days of PTO time - luckily I rarely get sick.
A) I intend to use all of it -- although I've only taken 5 days YTD and have no specific plans.
I have four weeks vacation and have had plans for 3 separate weeks so far. Two of the planned weeks of vacation have been cancelled with one remaining. I am due to take it week after next. Since it is tied on to the end of a business trip, I will probably get this one in. Hopefully, I will get one more week in before the end of the year. That will leave me two weeks of unspent vacation. That is not so bad at my company since we are reimbursed for any unused vacation at the end of the year.
I have 2-3 weeks to take and I'll take every minute. It's my only way to meet the "play hard" portion of the work hard + play hard = balance equation. (my wife and kids will appreciate it too).
Bonus: I plan to use it all before 12/31 because we have a use it or lose it policy.
I get 4 weeks this year, as it's my tenth year with the company. I could use it all, but am choosing to carry a week over into next year (i.e. keep it 'in the bank' in case of emergency).
I get 2 weeks of vacation and 4 personal days to use as I wish. I think after 5 years I move up to 3 weeks and every 5 years after that I get an increase.
I used my 1st week of vacation the first week of January and the other week in May. We have a "use it or lose it" policy so I make sure I use what I got. My sanity is more important than my job, although I more sane at work sometimes than at home with 3 kids!
Sometimes you wonder what vacation actually means in today's environment since you have no time at the end of the workday to get anything done...you have to take vacation just to get basic home needs taken care of. With that said! I am entitled to (E) > 4 weeks.........and some how I will take them because we are in the use it or loss it category!
I receive (d) 4 weeks of vacation and will use (b) more than half. It's nice to use those saved up vacation days to take Fridays off in November and December. There's nothing like a 4 day work week.
c is the answer for me and I will use at least half. While that seems like I should be getting enough time off, the problem for me is that I have to do it in bits and pieces. I was out of the office for six working days in the spring (the first time I have done that in years) and the mail stack on my desk was over a foot tall, emails drove my box over its size limit and it took me a month to recover from the backlog. It's just not worth it. So I take a day here or two days there, never really feeling like I got away but still looking like I am using vacation. Still I am grateful for the time in my bank and know that I am not alone in this dilemma. I try to treat some portion of every weekend and every evening as vacation time where I do what I want to do and I find that helps keep me sane.
E and A. We're in a "use it or lose it" situation so I'm definitely not going to lose it....
Question 1 How much available 3 weeks (d)
Question 2 How much being used more than half (b)
After changing jobs the third time since leaving a long-time employment in 1992, I am FINALLY up to three weeks ! I determined this year that I had to plan small periods of vacation spread over the year for my own health and to remain productive.
Keep up the great work Nevin !
My answer is (b) with an editorial "not enough". I was laid-off a couple of years ago and had to start all over. I feel very fortunate that I work for a company where I will be able to use 100% of it (choice "a"). I can't make the same statement for the company that I was with previously.
(c) I get 2-3 weeks vacation
(a) I'll use 100% of it this year
I'll use 100% but it will be a squeeze in November and December to use up that last week of time. I try NEVER to let a single day go to waste, but last year lost out on 3 days and you can be I won't let that happen again!
(c) two-three weeks and (a) 100% - but I'll spend four-six weeks' worth of nights and evenings to make up for it.
I love this survey question -- especially THIS YEAR!!!
I consider myself very fortunate to have 16 days of vacation this year (three 5-day work weeks), which gives the the (c) 2-3 weeks answer you provided.
When I took this job about 1 year ago, part of the deal was that I had 2 weeks off in August, as my family was planning a trip to Europe. I was willing to take that time w/o pay, but as it turns out, it will be a paid vacation!
I will probably be using (a) 100% of my vacation time this year, altho, I am hoping I can carry over 1 or 2 days, if I am lucky!!
I have 3 weeks (c) and my spouse has 6 weeks. He burns up a lot by golfing
in the summer, but he still has more than I do. Unfortunately, I work
longer than he does, so it seems most unfair!
I will use 100%.
How much vacation do you have this year? 2-3 weeks.
How much of that vacation do you think you will be able to use this year? I plan on using 100% because, as a new employee, we're required to use all our vacation by the end of each year. No time can be carried over unless it's been manager-approved. This should greatly reduce the number of vacation martyrs who brag about how much vacation time they have/didn't use the prior year, while routinely complaining about how stressed out they are.
(d) I have four weeks, and intend to use all of it. I've worked in the HR area for about 25 years. I have a good work ethic and contribute positively to my company. However, I find I have little patience with people who complain that they are just too busy and/or valuable to use their vacation time. If they'd spend the same amount of time working that they do complaining they can't take their vacation time...they could take their vacation time. But more importantly, I try to follow these words of wisdom: "The only martyrs I know are dead."
I get 4 weeks of vacation each year -- and I use every single one of those days. It makes me a better employee and a happier person.
My vacation is four weeks and I plan to use all of it. You have to recharge your batteries to be productive for the rest of the year.
Greetings. I get 20 vacation days/year, or 4 weeks. So, (d) is my first answer. I work in a small office, and the flexibility is such that we can occasionally go a little bit negative with vacation time, as long as it will be made up in the next month. Given that, I tend to use most of mine every year. So, put me in the 100% category, or (a).
Thanks. I hope you get to use yours.
I get 34 days a year and can accumulate up to 150% of that before it freezes. I have not yet used it all in one year. The most I have ever taken in one year is 3 weeks. If I ever figure out a way to use it all and still get my work done, I'll let you know.
e--I get 26 days/year. Plus I had an extra 10 days of "home leave" this year since I've been outside the US for 4 years now (we get 2 weeks every two years--separate from vacation days).
b--more than half. I took my home leave (use or lose) and have a week planned in August and another in October. Government employees get to carry over up to 240 hours every year, so I don't lose any unless I have more than 240 hours built up. That never happens to me, though. I'm a big believer in taking my vacation days at every opportunity -- you never know when your next chance might be...
(d) 3-4 weeks vacation time (18 days of paid time off credited this year - 15 days of vacation and 3 days of unscheduled paid time off (sick days)). I'll use (a) 100% because we're only allowed to carry over from year to year a maximum of 50 days in the bank, and I was max-ed out to start the year. We can't really afford to take a 2-3 week vacation this summer (scared to spend the money in this troubled economic state), so I've been taking about 1 day a week to work in the yard or take a mini-holiday with the family at the local 6 Flags. We're also taking a couple of extended weekends to visit the folks and make other short trips.
I've been with my firm long enough (16 years) to be entitled to 4 weeks vacation per year. This summer, for the first time in several years, I took a two-week vacation, rather than just extended weekends. Even though it requires more pre-departure coordination with family and co-workers, it's definitely worth it. I know it'll take me at least three weeks to catch-up on with what was left on my desk while I was away -- still worth it. (I'd say about 25% of "issues" that came up while I was away were resolved by time or coworkers by the time I returned.) It was great to be able to read your daily newsletters to find what happened while I was away. (When do you get to take a vacation?)
I plan to use 100% of my "c", 3 weeks vacation. It seems that people with school-age kids, like myself, place a high priority on vacation time, as they see the years slipping away, and the "family time" coming to an end as the kids age and move away from home in a short number of years. When I think back to my single years, and even to the years before kids, even though the work schedule is even busier now, it was in those "old" days that all the vacation wouldn't get used and would be rolled over to the next year. Now, with the kids at school-age, family vacations are the top-priority - the work will still be there when we get back.
I have 500 hours of vacation time on the books. I will use a week at the end of July and a week at Christmas and I earn over 2 days a month - more time than I can use, believe it or not. I wish I had the same problem with my paycheck - which is part of the reason I have so much vacation time.
p.s. Nevin: I look forward to reading the newsdash every day. It's helped me a lot in my CEBS studies. Thanks.
Interesting survey. We have gone to a system that uses PTO (paid time off) instead of vacation. It consolidates various floating holidays, personal days and vacation entitlement into a pool. For me, that translates to 24 days off so I guess I'm in (d) for the time off portion.
I am 100% certain that I will use all of my time off as I had a heart attack earlier this year and used quite a bit to cover a portion of the Medical Leave.
I have 3 weeks along with a week carried over from last year. I hope to get three in this year and the funny thing is I am taking a vacation day today and answering this e-mail
Currently, I have 37 vacation days, which is net of the 10 days I've taken so far, and will accrue an additional 10 days by the end of the year, therefore, my answer is (e). I really don't know how many more vacation days I can take because of the volume of work and the lack of staffing resources. HR and management says we should take vacation, but there is always a caveat "make sure you are all caught up with your work", and that "even if your vacation request has been approved, they can always take it back if work warrants it". AND, if you reach the vacation days cap (which is 40 in my case), then you stop accruing. We're caught between a rock and a hard place.
I am eligible for (b) 1-2 weeks, but even if I get out of the office physically for that time frame, I will be found and end up working for at least half of it.
D - I have 3 weeks of paid vacation plus 4 "personal" holidays.
Second question: A - I will use all of it if it kills me. No one on their death bed ever said they wished they'd spent more time at the office. I have never NOT taken all of my vacation, and I honestly have little pity for those that don't take all of their vacation. some folks have 5 weeks
here, and I tell them they should immediately take two weeks in the first quarter of the year so they don't have it hanging around at the end of the year. Of course, you have to balance all of that with our 94.5% utilization goals. So you can take as much vacation as you want - provided you are still utilized at 94.5% (and they do generously provide for two weeks of vacation in their calculation of that percentage).
I get 5 weeks and two days of PTO. I'll probably get 3 full weeks taken and whatever miscellaneous days. We can cash in what we don't use now, so if I don't take it I can get paid for it.
I have five weeks (actually, one of those is "personal/sick time".) I use my personal time as vacation. I don't want to waste a day off being sick. Unless I'm at death's door, I'm here. Last year I carried over a week, which is why I have five this year. I've almost taken two weeks so far, and am planning to take at least another two before the end of the year. I might even take it all! Won't that be nice!?! I had to work here ten years to get up to three weeks vacation per year - and this year I'm going to take it - I deserve it.
E) We have paid time off and vacation combined and years of service increase the time off. I have been here 9 years.
B) More than half. Last year with GUST and EGTRRA & a merger I did not have time to take a lot of my vacation. This year I have placed the time off with my family as a higher priority!
Regarding your vacation question --
My answer is probably (d), but it may be (c).... we get a pool of days to cover sick time, vacation time, and basically any other time out of the office. If I'm not sick during the year, then I will get (d), but if I'm sick or need to take an extra hour here and there for childcare or anything else, then I'll end up getting (c) or maybe even (b).
Although our pool of days rolls forward continuously -- we don't have to use it or lose it -- I end up using (a) all of it.
I managed to have 6 weeks of vacation to use this year - plus 10 holidays. I plan to take most of it this year. This is really a misnomer though because of all of the overtime I spend before and after vacation just to be sure that I can take the vacation I have.
So answer is "e" to the first question and "a" or almost 100% to the second.
D) Using all 4 weeks last year. Even managed to take 1 week leftover from last year a week of paternity this year. I am done giving my flesh all year only to eat my vacation as well. Truth is, I can finally accept that the world won't stop if I am not here.
Answers: E and C. But the underlying question is: Take 2+ weeks vacation and a) increase one's "meds" upon returning to an overloaded email, v-mail, snail-mail, confidential memos, etc., etc. OR Don't take time away and b) increase one's "meds" BECAUSE you're not on vacation. Either way, the pharmaceutical and beverage stocks win.
Answer: c--thus far, have taken about five days . . . you know, a Friday here and there to make a long weekend. I have planned another six--five of which will be consecutive. However, looking at my schedule I don't have time for any, but I do believe, taking time off is important to keep one on top of their game (whether in the office or at home).
Vacation time.... Yes, I have a lot accrued (200+ hours), and will start to stop accruing if I don't take some soon.... But husband lost his job over a year ago and has a Temp job, so he can't take time off... I'll probably take a day here and there to keep my accrual under the capped
limit, but nothing of any note.... Besides, when I take even a day off, I pay when I come back.... to a deluge of e-mails and voice mails....
I have (d) 3-4 weeks (actually it's 3 weeks and 2 floating holidays).
And the Use question - (a) 100% - or at least I plan on trying to use it all. At our company we've got a use it or lose it policy - intended to make sure everyone actually uses the time they have. The theory is, in order to be at your best, you need to have some rest throughout the year. I like that policy. And I don't like losing my time off! (I hope to never get to the point where I can't somehow squeeze in 3 weeks in 52. I made a conscious decision to "work to live, not live to work" a few years ago. Those 3 weeks are my chance to "live"!)
Having just gotten back from the backwoods of Utah, I feel rested and ready to take on the world! Of course, I choose destinations where there are no land lines, fax machines, or cell service. That way I have to take the time off! Although I did carry my cell phone "for emergencies" (security blanket?) and checked for service whenever we were above 8500'. It was pretty weird being in the middle of an aspen forest, looking at a herd of elk, not having seen any one but my family in 3 days, and taking the time to check whether my cell service was better than my husband's!
I'm pretty sure this is the winning combination:
(e) more than that (because I don't take my full accrual each year and carry over) and (c) you don't want to know.
I'd be surprised if the majority of people in management take their full allotment. If I haven't received notice of at least two weeks of vacation by June, I send reminders to my team that they are working too hard and to take some time off.
Have a great week, keep up the great newsletter, but make sure you take some time off!
If I were a regular employee, I would accrue 4 weeks a year. However, since I am Senior Management, I don't accrue and they don't track and sometimes it is a challenge to try and take the vacation due me. Of course, when I do take vacation, I am usually checking email, but try to limit it to every other day.
Now as to how much vacation I will be able to take this year... Due to my kids activities, we won't be able to take a family vacation. We took one week with one daughter to go to Davis, CA so she could play in a volleyball tournament. As a team mom, it was no vacation for me, other than I wasn't at work. She goes to France for 3 weeks in August, then school starts. My younger daughter has been in summer school, then starts her cheerleading practice after that. We are taking her and a friend to the Colorado river with friends for 6 days during her only open time in August. That will be a vacation.
We hope to have better luck next year, although I understand the music teacher wants to take the kids to Europe, and they are both in music too.
Started out with 33 days... Still have 28 left, but the wife is making me take two weeks at the end of the month. Although that will leave me with 18 to go, I refuse to use the rest of the days. Vacations are too expensive. Besides, why would I break the streak of the past three years of losing un-used vacation days?