Why is America the 'No-Vacation Nation'?

31 May 2011

A recent article on CNN explores the difference between Americans and most other nations when it comes to taking vacations, with only 57% of U.S. workers fully utilizing their vacation time which is often for much shorter durations than holidays in other countries.

Employers in the United States are not obligated under federal law to offer any paid vacation, so about a quarter of all American workers don't have access to it, government figures show.

That makes the U.S. the only advanced nation in the world that doesn't guarantee its workers annual leave, according to a report titled "No-Vacation Nation" by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, a liberal policy group.

Most U.S. companies, of course, do provide vacation as a way to attract and retain workers.

The article notes that work makes Americans happier according to some studies, whereas leisure time was more indicative of general happiness in European nations. It is also noted that taking less vacation seems to have little bearing on our nation's Economic Forum ranking.

To read more on this and about efforts to formally extend American leisure rights, read the article on CNN.