Have YOU scheduled your time off this year?

Wild, Wonderful West Virginia celebrates National Plan for Vacation Day

I work in one of the greatest industries on the planet— travel— but I am a carpenter whose house is falling down (and no, I don’t use a nail gun at my job!). You see, all day I market my beloved home state of Wild, Wonderful West Virginia to the outside world, and I love it. Encouraging travelers to take their hard-earned time off and visit the Mountain State is an excellent way to make a living.

Here’s my deep, dark secret: I tell people to take all their time and travel, yet I don’t do it myself. Hence the “carpenter with the collapsing house.” But it’s not just me and my travel and tourism industry Young female hiker crossing Red Creek, WVfriends who are not taking full advantage of the time we have all earned— it’s the whole country.

The numbers don’t lie. According to Project: Time Off, in the year 2015 alone, 55 percent of all Americans didn’t use all their vacation time. That’s 658 million days left over! You would think with advancements in technology and almost instant access to so much information that Americans would be taking more time off than years past, but alas— you would be wrong. From the year 1976 to 2000, the average number of days taken by an American has dropped from 20.3 to 16— almost an entire work week.

Luckily for some, these unused days carry over. But for 47 percent of Americans, days off are “use them or lose them.” You wouldn’t throw part of your salary away just because you didn’t spend it by the end of the year, so why do that with your hard-earned time off?I know what you’re thinking: “I have to be at work all the time if I want to advance.” But surprisingly enough the statistics say otherwise. According to Project: Time Off, “Employees who take 10 or fewer days of vacation time are less likely to have received a raise or bonus in the last 3 years than those who took 11 days or more.”

So join me and the rest of the GoToWV team as we change the trend and take part in National Plan for Vacation Day this January 31. This carpenter is ready to do some work around the house!

This post was last updated on March 16, 2022