Do Americans Need a Vacation?

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Is the American work ethic doing more harm than good? Do we put so much emphasis on work that we neglect rest? Compared to other advanced economies, that seems to be the case. While our counterparts have national vacation policies guaranteeing thirty or more vacation days a year, the United States doesn’t even have a national vacation policy.

As we reach the end of summer, and of vacation season, we asked listeners: 'How much vacation time do you get at your job? Do you think it's enough?' We received responses from all over the country and from a variety of occupations.

Travis works in Pennsylvania and receives 6.5 vacation hours for every full month he works. Andrew works in California and receives four to five weeks of vacation a year, but would prefer to receive six. 

Both Travis and Andrew asked that we not use their last names.

Produced by:

Kristen Meinzer

Comments [4]

Larry Fisher from Brooklyn, N.Y.

Vacations are like potato chips, you can't just have one... I went to Rome and Disneyland this year, and I am crying that I can't get away anymore. When money comes rolling in again, I will invest in vacations... I find that traveling around and going to new places, helps me grow as a human being... and is more important than a nice car, expensive clothing

First of all Rome has a lot more ruins than I expected... You won't get the joke till you get there but "Rome was not built in a day" is really, really funny after you walk around for a couple of days... it ain't just a couple of blocks...

and you learn everything you need to know about a city from its ruins...

Just eating in Rome has changed my whole way of making meatballs and now I know the importance of Al Dente

And Disneyland was always a place that I thought was going to be to square for me. I come out of the judgmental Old School New York Underground Artistic Jewish Community... We are tough neurotics who don't like to wait on line and don't like cute things... I LOVED DISNEYLAND...

So, the rest of this summer, no vacation... but I spend some time everyday commenting on The Takeaway, making great Italian meals and dreaming about fantastical rides both that I took and ones that I invent in my head...

Not a bad vacation for someone, if you only have a couple of hours a day, and the rest of the time, I work and try to make as much money as I did twenty years ago, in the same business I do now

Aug. 08 2012 09:47 AM
Larry Fisher from Brooklyn, N.Y.

The fabulous Jim Bakus who played Mr. Howe on Gilligan's Island sang a song called "I Need A Vacation."

Aug. 08 2012 09:27 AM

Am a self employed physician so I take a vacation/staycation whenever I need to catch up with my spirits

Aug. 08 2012 08:58 AM
Michelle Bright from Austin, TX

My husband and I love to take physical vacations by getting outside and hiking. It feels like shaking off an outer layer of built up work grime. However, living in Texas, it's too hot for being outside for any length of time and too expensive to get to a place where the heat wave doesn't have a strangle hold. So this year's vacation? A road trip to tour the caves in central Texas. Underground. Cool. Literally and figuratively.

Aug. 08 2012 08:50 AM

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