It’s only February, but never too soon to begin dreaming of your next vacation. Sometimes it’s a staycation right in your own home-town, a girlfriends’ getaway just a few hours from home, or maybe it’s an all-inclusive 10-day ocean-view that you covet. No matter where you drift, perhaps more important than the actual destination is the physical and emotional break you receive when taking time away from work. But, did you know that in 2013, Americans skipped out on 3.2 days of earned time off? That’s a whopping 429 million unused days annually across the U.S. workforce. As the Travel Effect Playbook suggests, it’s time for Americans to shift how we view time off. It’s NOT frivolous, but helps to strengthening families and improving personal health and it’s a business investment yielding great economic returns.
The Playbook says it best…”taking time off is essential for a fulfilled life and productive workforce.” Take a look at how the tourism industry is impacted when earned days off are left on the table:
- Unused leave cost the industry $120 billion in spending, $67 billion which is direct travel spending
- That spending helps support 1.2 million jobs across the nation
As a child, I fondly remember the annual family vacation. My parents were both teachers in small rural districts which meant no trips to Disney or beach vacations, but we never skipped a summer loading up the family wagon and heading east to our grandparents cabin in upstate New York. I will never forget those memories along I-70 or the time spent with cousins around a campfire roasting marshmallows or telling ghost stories. You see, it doesn’t matter where you go as long as you just go. But, if people continue to forego the benefits they earn in the workplace, the childhood vacations of generations not long ago could completely disappear. Don’t let that happen — you earned that time off and it’s yours to take! Build memories, recharge and rejuvenate, stimulate the economy and enjoy your time off!
There are tons of options to consider: discover local ideas right in your own community; plan an extended 4-day weekend with your partner to reconnect; grab the guys for a fishing excursion; or, pack up the entire family for a flight or drive to discover a new destination.
Kansas City has a great resource for those wishing to visit (or those who live here and want to explore locally). KC Destinations offers suggestions by theme so you can build an itinerary suited to fit your travel needs. Take a peek at www.kcdestinations.com to get started! We are happy to host you and help you enjoy those remaining 3.2 days!
Hans Christian Andersen was spot on…”to travel is to live.” Enjoy your journeys and please let us know if we can serve your travel needs when visiting Merriam!