January 30, 2018National Plan for Vacation Day
Americans need a wake-up call to take back their calendars and #PlanForVacation.
Americans universally say that their vacation days are important to them, yet more than half (54%) of U.S. employees leave time on the table. These unused days carry significant economic impact, threaten the sustainability of a productive and creative workforce, and have a damaging effect on employee's personal well-being and relationships.
In our culture of packed schedules, hyper-connectivity, and work martyrdom, Americans are in serious need of a break. While there are hurdles to overcome in the workplace, there's one step we can all take to put those vacation days to use: planning. Research shows that individuals who plan are more likely to use all of their time off, take more vacation days at once, and report greater levels of happiness at work and at home.
Join us for National Plan for Vacation Day on January 30, 2018 to plan your vacation days for the rest of the year at the start of the year.
According to the State of American Vacation 2017, the most effective remedy for American workers who want to use more vacation days is better planning. A majority (52%) of workers who say they set aside time each year to plan out their vacation days take all their time off, compared to just 40 percent of non-planners. They also tend to take longer vacations. While three-in-four (75%) planners take a week or more at a time, non-planners take significantly fewer days—zero to three—than planners at once (42% to 18%).
The benefits of planning extend beyond the days spent away from the office. Planners are report greater happiness than non-planners with their relationships, health and well-being, company, and job.
The increased professional happiness among planners is reinforced by workplace cultures that encourage vacation. Thirty-nine percent of planners say their company’s culture encourages taking time off, versus just 27 percent of non-planners.
Planners also feel more supported at work when they take time off. Nearly half (48%) of planners say their bosses support them when they take vacation, compared to 37 percent of non-planners. Half (50%) of planners say their colleagues support them when they go on vacation, compared to 40 percent of non-planners.
CONFIRM YOUR TIME OFF BENEFITS. To get started, look up your company’s time off benefits. Your benefits may have changed from last year as many organizations offer additional days based on your years of service. Make sure anyone you are traveling with also takes stock of their vacation days.
REVIEW YOUR CALENDAR FOR THE YEAR. It’s important to see when you could actually take a vacation. Consider:
GET TO DREAMING. Now, the fun part. What are you going to cross off your bucket list this year? Where have you been wanting to travel? What are you dying to try? You don’t necessarily need to know exactly what you’ll do with every vacation day—just block the calendar now and give yourself the opportunity. Use our vacation planning tool below to get started.
SHARE WITH YOUR MANAGER FOR APPROVAL. Once you have your desired schedule together, share it with your team for consideration and manager for approval. But don’t be anxious: nearly all senior business leaders believe vacation time benefits their employees and the company. By getting your time off on their radar now, it will be easier to take the time off when the day comes. After you’ve received approval, block the days as out of office on your calendar and any master calendar your team may share.