With summer upon us, many Americans have dreams. Dreams of days in the sun, catching that vitamin D. Dreams of days in the woods hiking. Dreams of escaping their daily routine of waking up, getting the family ready and out the door for work or camp, working eight hours, picking up the kids, getting dinner on the table, going to bed and doing it all over again.
Who doesn’t have that dream???
Did you know, out of 21 of the richest countries around the world, the United States is the ONLY one who does not have it required that businesses give their employees paid vacation time? We are the only country that allows businesses to choose how much time they will allow their employees. I love America, but, you know what? That’s kind of pathetic. This was in a policy put into place in 1938. Ummm, that was almost 80 years ago. Am I the only one that sees an issue with that?
Of the other 20 countries in the OECD Nations, here are the lowest to highest in required vacation time allowed to their citizens:
20 ~ Japan ** 10 Days
Japan gives their employees 10 paid vacation days.
19 ~ Canada ** 16 Days
Canada gives their employees 10 paid vacation days and 6 paid holidays.
18 ~ Netherlands ** 20 Days
Netherlands gives their employees 20 paid vacation days.
17 ~ Greece ** 24 Days
Greece gives their employees 20 days vacation and 4 paid holidays.
16 ~ Sweden ** 25 Days
Sweden gives their employees 25 paid vacation days.
15 ~ Switzerland ** 27 Days
Switzerland gives their employees 20 paid vacation days and 7 paid holidays.
14 ~ Norway ** 27 Days
Norway tied with Switzerland and gives their employees 25 paid vacation and 2 paid holidays.
13 ~ Ireland ** 29 Days
Ireland gives their employees 20 paid vacation days and 9 paid holidays.
12 ~ Germany ** 29 Days
Germany tied with Australia and gives their employees 20 paid vacations and 9 paid holidays.
11 ~ Australia ** 30 Days
Australia tied with Germany and gives their employees 20 paid vacation days and 10 paid holidays.
10 ~ Belgium ** 30 Days
Belgium gives their employees 20 paid vacations and 10 paid holidays.
9 ~ New Zealand ** 31 Days
New Zealand gives their employees 20 paid vacations and 11 paid holidays.
8 ~ Italy ** 32 Days
Italy gives their employees 20 paid vacations and 12 paid holidays.
7 ~ Denmark ** 34 Days
Denmark gives their employees 25 vacation days and 9 paid holidays.
6 ~ Portugal ** 35 Days
Portugal gives their employees 22 vacation days and 13 paid holidays
5 ~ United Kingdom ** 36 Days
The UK tied with Finland, France AND Spain. They give their employees 28 paid vacation days and 8 paid holidays.
4 ~ Finland ** 36 Days
Finland tied with the UK, France AND Spain. They give their employees 25 paid vacation days and 11 paid holidays
3 ~ France ** 36 Days
France tied with the US, Finland AND Spain. They give their employees 25 paid vacation days and 11 paid holidays.
2 ~ Spain ** 36 Days
Spain gives their employees 22 paid vacation days and 14 paid holidays.
1 ~ Austria ** 38 Days
Austria gives their employees 25 paid vacation days and 13 paid holidays.
Vacation is a time that employees need to take away from work. They spend a majority of their waking time there and they need to be able to walk away from work and refresh. While researching the countries as part of the OECD, I came across the vacation and holiday times available on Wikipedia showing all the days off other countries GIVE their employees. The highest I came across was 45 and 52. These are from Cambodia and Iran consecutively. Let me repeat that. CAMBODIA and IRAN…. Now, let those amount of days sink in. That is OVER a month and a half of time off work to rejuvenate.
No other country has it as their policy that employers are not required to give their employees vacation time or personal time. I find that highly outrageous. As rich as our country is supposed to be? It’s insane! You can view the complete list HERE.
And most Americans who take their vacation time, end up taking their work with them. This is so they don’t fall behind and end up fearing the loss of their jobs. That is one thing I refuse to do. My vacations, personal days and sick days taken are away from the office. I do not turn on my work computer. Even to check emails. They will be there when I get back to the office.
I’m thinking this is a policy that our next president needs to work on updating. Having unhappy workers is no good to any business.
How many days do you receive off each year from your employer? How about paid holidays if any? I receive 10 vacation days, and 9 paid holidays. My company also just started offering a choice program between November 1st and the end of the year, if we’ve used all of our vacation and personal time, we are able to take unpaid days off around the holiday. I admit, I ended up taking advantage of three days last year. Unfortunate, I wasn’t able to afford more time off than that. Otherwise I definitely would have!