Survey: 40 Percent of Americans Are All Work, No Play

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Why Americans are taking less vacation than ever before -- and why it's not good for anyone!

Americans really love to work – at least according to a new Skift survey, which reveals that just over 40 percent of Americans took no vacation in 2015. Not a single day.

The all-work-and-no play mentality is nothing new for Americans. In fact, the United States has earned itself this undesirable nickname: the “no vacation nation.” Americans’ reluctance to take vacation is bad enough that one Italian company is now requiring its American workers to take their vacation time.

Skift, which provides information on the travel industry, said its annual vacation survey had similar results last year, with about 40 percent of Americans saying they took no vacation days throughout 2014.

This is the breakdown of American workers’ use of vacation time in 2015, based on the Skift survey of more than 2,000 workers:

  • No vacation – 40.5 percent
  • Less than five days – 17.4 percent
  • Between five and 10 days – 14.8 percent
  • Between 10 and 20 days – 14.4 percent
  • More than 20 days – 12.9 percent

Many Americans say they’re reluctant to take vacation because they don’t want to fall behind or they believe their work won’t get done properly while they’re away. Others say they’re afraid they’ll look replaceable if they’re gone.

But before you choose to toil your days away in the office, you may want to consider the potential positive impacts of taking some time off from work.

According to the Boston College Center for Work & Family, vacations can increase physical and mental well-being, worker productivity and focus. Vacations also contribute to better family and personal relationships.

Although it’s easy to tell American workers to take a vacation, it may not be feasible for them, MarketWatch reports. The Center for Economic and Policy Research estimates that one in four Americans don’t get paid vacation time from their employer.

“Many of them are low-income workers (only about half of low-wage workers — defined as the bottom fourth of earners — get paid vacation) and are the least able to afford to take an unpaid vacation day,” explains MarketWatch.

Do you earn paid vacation? If so, do you take all your vacation days? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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