PHOTO: An Alamo Rent A Car airport facility. (photo via Flickr/Atomic Taco)
A new study from Alamo Rent A Car found that workers in the United States are feeling more guilt than ever about planning and taking their vacations.
The 2017 Alamo Rent A Car Family Vacation Survey revealed that 49 percent of all American workers report feeling "vacation shamed" compared with only 47 percent in the 2016 survey. Millennials felt like they were the most shamed, with 68 percent reporting vacation shaming as compared to 59 percent feeling the same way in the 2016 study.
While Millennials are more likely to let vacation shaming keep them from planning or going on a trip, they are also more likely than older generations to shame their own co-workers.
In total, the Alamo report suggests only 47 percent of workers are using all of their paid vacation days, compared with 60 percent in the 2015 study and 57 percent in the 2016 study. And when people finally do take vacation, 57 percent report feeling guilty because their co-workers have to take over their job duties, while another 48 percent feel the need to justify to their employer why they’re using their time off.
“Our research shows roughly one in four U.S. workers say the biggest benefit of vacation is feeling less stressed at work – yet, the majority still choose to limit their vacation days and forgo some much-needed rest and relaxation,” Alamo Rent A Car vice president Rob Connors said in a statement.
“This year’s survey suggests that American workers are putting a lot of pressure on themselves in workplaces when it comes to planning and taking vacations, especially in vacation-shaming environments.”
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Another problem facing today’s American workers is the pressure to work on vacation. An astounding 65 percent of working families say they put at least some amount of pressure on themselves to work while on family vacations, and another 48 percent say they work on family vacations because they don’t want to come back to a mountain of tasks.
“American workers are at a critical crossroads: reclaim our time off and reap the benefits of downtime or continue down the path of work martyrdom and burnout,” Project: Time Off senior director Katie Denis said in a statement. “With a solution as simple as planning, the decision here is an easy one.”