Trends: Vacation Habits Studied By Workaholics - My Family Travels

The state of human happiness correlates directly with the amount of vacation time taken by workers.

Hotels and online travel agencies are among the many studying vacation habits in an effort to drum up business.

If they can prove what everyone knows: people who vacation regularly are happier and healthier than workaholics, then maybe they can sell more vacations.

A recent Expedia survey found that among developed nations, workers in Japan take the fewest days off per year, an average of nine days. Although businesses typically allot 16.5 leisure days per year to their staff, most Japanese take about half of them.

In contrast, the poll conducted by Harris Interactive found the happy and healthy people of France get the highest average number of vacation days a year, a whopping 37.5, and most take full advantage of their time off.

Just ahead of Japan, the United States gives workers an average of only 17 vacation days per year. A Westin Hotels survey found that 64% of Americans have canceled a vacation due to work worries, but of those who took them, the maximum number of days off was 14.

Workers in Denmark, Germany and Norway — affluent countries with avid travelers — were most likely to take full advantage of the days given, using 93% of their allocated vacation of 29, 27.5, and 28 days respectively. This may lead to making them the happiest people on earth. 

In more stats about happy-go-lucky workers, New Zealand workers were given an average of 19.5 days vacation a year and would take about 17 while in Australia people usually take about 16.5 days of the 20 days' holiday permitted. 

In Canada, real Canadians tend to use 90 percent of an average holiday allowance of 20 days.

In Sweden, workers use 89 percent of 27.5 days.

The employed in Great Britain use 91 percent of 28 days; in Italy it's 82 percent of 32.5 days, and in laid back Spain they use 89 percent of 32 days.

If the workaholics at FTFc had the time, we'd run a birth rate analysis against all these numbers because researchers at the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation found that women who take a holiday once a year or more are almost twice as apt to be satisfied with their marriage as those who escape less often.

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