May 5, 2016Guilty Trips: Why Millennials Vacation Shame
"Oh, you're taking a vacation...must be nice."
Vacation shaming, being made to feel a sense of shame or guilt from co-workers for taking a vacation, has become prevalent in the American workplace, especially among millennials, according to research from Alamo Rent A Car. Findings from the 2016 Alamo Family Vacation Survey show 59 percent of Millennials reported feeling a sense of shame for taking or planning a vacation compared to 41 percent those 35 or older.
Oddly enough, employed Millennials aren't just more likely to feel vacation-shamed – they're significantly more likely than older generations to say they also shame their co-workers (42% vs. 24%). Plus, millennials who have ever shamed their co-workers were significantly more likely than older generations to say they're at least somewhat serious (42% vs. 22%).
While Millennials were most likely to feel guilty about taking time off, Alamo Family Vacation Survey indicates that vacation shaming is affecting all generations. Nearly half (47%) of all workers surveyed said they felt a sense of shame or guilt at their workplace for taking time off to go on a vacation. What's more, two-fifths (42%) of those think their co-workers are seriously shaming them – not just joking. And nearly half (47%) said they've felt the need to justify to their employer why they're using their vacation days.
What's most concerning is that vacation shaming is effective in stopping people from taking a vacation. Twenty-two percent of workers reported that feeling shame was at least somewhat likely to keep them from going on or planning a vacation.