VIEWS: 55 PAGES: 4 CATEGORY: Jobs & Careers POSTED ON: 4/15/2009
Annual Expedia Survey Reveals Work Stress a Primary Reason Americans May Limit Vacation This Year
Annual Expedia Survey Reveals Work Stress a Primary Reason Americans May Limit Vacation This Year Number of employed U.S. adults not planning to use all earned vacation time increases three percent from 2008 Expedia.com(R) today announced the results of its ninth annual Vacation Deprivation(R) survey, revealing that 49.4MM(1) Americans(2) (approximately 34 percent of employed U.S. adults), citing work-related pressure as a contributing factor, will not use all of their earned vacation days in 2009. Again this year, Americans will give back an average of three vacation days each. Even though a vast majority (89 percent) of employed U.S. adults believes they are entitled to all earned vacation days, the number of workers who will not use all of those earned days increased from 31 percent in 2008 to 34 percent in 2009. Additionally, the 2009 Expedia(R) Vacation Deprivation survey revealed that Americans continue to receive fewer vacation days than their international counterparts. "The stress associated with the current economy makes the need for time away from work even more important than ever, and it's unfortunate that one-third of Americans won't use all of their vacation days this year," said Tim MacDonald, general manager of Expedia.com. "What many people may not realize is that their travel dollars buy so much more than they did just a year ago. Even if you can only get away for a few days, there are amazing vacation values and opportunities this year." Workplace Pressure Increasing in Current Economy Although Americans see value in taking vacation time, fewer this year said that they feel better about their job and more productive upon returning from vacation than last year (34 percent in 2009 vs. 39 percent in 2008). Additionally, nearly one-third of Americans (30 percent) admitted they have trouble coping with stress from work during the vacation cycle. As work responsibilities continue to deter workers from taking time off, fewer Americans felt that their employer encourages them to use all earned vacation days (61 percent in 2009 vs. 67 percent in 2008). Workers are also taking fewer extended vacations, with the number of adults who plan to take a two-week vacation declining from 14 percent in 2008 to 10 percent in 2009. Another potential sign of the times, eight percent of adults included the possibility of missing an important meeting or an important decision at work as a potential reason for not using all vacation days, up from just five percent who cited that reason last year. Additional Findings Regarding U.S. Vacation Habits -- On average, Americans reported receiving 13 vacation days in 2009, one day less than the previous three years. -- Women are more likely than men to feel guilty about taking time off from work (40 percent of women vs. 29 percent of men). -- Approximately 39 percent of working Americans plan on using the majority of their vacation time in 2009 by taking at least one full week of vacation and spreading out remaining days. -- More than half (58 percent) of Americans plan to travel by car in 2009 while 30 percent plan to travel by plane. -- Although some Americans sacrifice vacation time for work, 87 percent reported that certain activities help them feel as though they are truly away from work. Top activities mentioned include: traveling to another state/country (59 percent); enjoying good food and/or drinks prepared and served by someone else (50 percent); trying new activities and foods (44 percent); and participating in outdoor activities (43 percent). Vacation Insights From Around the World In addition to looking at the U.S., the 2009 Expedia Vacation Deprivation survey polled the vacation habits of employed workers in Canada, Great Britain, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Austria, Australia, Japan, and for the first time, New Zealand. This year, workers in Canada, France and Australia will receive between one and two more vacation days than in 2008, while all other countries will either receive fewer vacation days or see no change in earned time off. Employed adults in France will receive and take the most vacation days of all countries surveyed, with workers receiving 38 days and leaving only two days unused. Even though working Americans receive the smallest number of vacation days, workers in Japan leave are the least vacation-minded, as 92 percent of workers said they would not use all vacation days and will leave an average of seven days on the table. For complete survey results please visit www.vacationdeprivation.com. About Expedia.com Expedia.com(R) is the world's leading online travel provider, helping millions of travelers per month easily plan and book travel. Expedia.com (http://www.expedia.com/ and 1-800EXPEDIA) aims to provide personalized service, the latest technology and the widest selection of vacation packages, flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises and in-destination activities, attractions, and services. With the Expedia(R) Best Price Guarantee, Expedia.com promises to offer to its customers the best rates available online for all types of travel, making it the most comprehensive customer guarantee in online travel. Expedia is dedicated to positively impacting global tourism by providing travelers environmentally conscious travel options. Expedia is a founding member of the World Heritage Alliance - a joint initiative with the United Nations Foundation to promote sustainable tourism. Expedia.com is an operating company of Expedia, Inc. Expedia.com, Vacation Deprivation and the Airplane logo are registered trademark of Expedia, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other logos or product and company names mentioned herein may be the property of their respective owners. (C) 2009 Expedia, Inc. All rights reserved. CST: 2029030-40 Methodology Statements United States, Great Britain, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Austria Harris Interactive(R) fielded the online survey on behalf of Expedia.com between March 12 and March 16, 2009 among a nationwide cross-section of 1,530 employed adults aged 18+ in the United States. The European survey was conducted between March 5 and March 12, 2009 among nationwide cross-section of 565 employed adults aged 16+ in Great Britain, 483 employed adults aged 16+ in France, 512 employed adults aged 16+ in Germany, 557 employed adults aged 16+ in Spain, 591 employed adults aged 16+ in Italy, and 571 employed adults aged 16+ in Austria. The European data were weighted to be representative of the total adult populations of each country on the basis of region, age, sex, education, income and propensity to be online. The U.S. data were weighted to be representative of the total U.S. adult population on the basis of region, age within gender, education, household income, race/ethnicity and propensity to be online. In theory, with probability samples of this size, one can say with 95 percent certainty that the results for the U.S. sample have a sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points, the results for the British, French, German, Italian, Austrian, and Spanish samples have a sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points. This online sample is not a probability sample and therefore no theoretical sampling error can be calculated. Canada Harris/Decima completed 2,019 online surveys among a random sample of Harris/Decima panel members aged 18 and older, among which 1,330 are employed. The study was conducted from March 24th to March 30th, 2009. This was a standard panel survey among a random sample of our Canadian panel members. In a fashion similar to a telephone study, email addresses from our panel were pulled at random, according to population and gender specifications, in order to make the study representative of the Canadian population by region and gender. When contacted to solicit participation, participants had no prior knowledge of the subject matter of the study. Harris/Decima controls access to the study through passwords to ensure that respondents can participate only one time. Subsequent to completion of the study, the data was weighted for region, age, gender, and propensity to be online. *Comparison of the some of the findings to previous years should be interpreted with caution because of the change in survey supplier. However, every effort has been made to maintain the same methodology and market research standards. Australia and New Zealand Pureprofile fielded the online survey on behalf of Expedia.com.au and Expedia.co.nz between March 16 and March 19, 2009 among a nationwide cross-section of 1001 adults aged 18+ in Australia and 1004 adults aged 18+ in New Zealand. The data was weighted to be representative of the total AU and NZ population on the basis of gender, location and age (18-64 years). With probability samples of this size, one can say with 95 percent certainty that the results for the sample have a sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points. Japan Macro Mill fielded the Internet research on behalf of Expedia.co.jp between March 30 and April 2, 2009 among a nation-wide cross-section of 516 adults aged 20+ in Japan. The data was weighted to be representative of the total Japanese population on the basis of gender, location and age (20-59 years). With probability samples of this size, one can say with 95 percent certainty that the results for the sample have a sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points. (1) Calculation: 0.34 * 145,299,000 employed Americans (Bureau of Labor & Statistics) = 49,401,660 vacation deprived Americans (2) Throughout this announcement, the term "Americans" refers to U.S. adults aged 18 and over who are employed full-time and/or part-time and/or self-employed. Source: Expedia, Inc.
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