Unlike most other developed countries, the United States has no minimum vacation law. Check out this nifty map to compare us versus the world. (While you’re there, sign the petition if you want — today is the last day.) What’s more, even for those workers who have paid vacation time almost half of all those days don’t get used.
Even if this isn’t a legislative matter, it is one of the barriers potential visitors to our destinations face. As travel marketers we need to find ways to minimize that obstacle for people who want to experience new places. Are there policies that enable and encourage employees to indulge in more leisure travel? I found a few examples of companies that offer more than PTO:
- Evernote gives employees unlimited vacation days (trusting that employees complete their work) plus $1,000 to take off at least a week at a time.
- FullContact offers "paid paid vacation," which annually awards employees $7,500 to go on vacation, and they are required to unplug completely.
This topic is getting more buzz lately at conferences and in the media. As travel industry stewards we should be among the most active groups advocating for Americans to have fair time off and to take advantage of it. Imagine what would it mean for U.S. destinations if domestic employees spent that extra time travelling? While you’re at it, plan a little time off for yourself.