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Majority of U.S. travelers struggle to take all their vacation days

Helena Tzioti - 05 March 2013, 11:11

Best Western launches vacation citation contest to empower travelers to take their vacations. Sixty-two percent of travelers surveyed said they had difficulty taking vacation in the past 12 months and half said work frequently keeps them from relaxing while on vacation.

PHOENIX - More than half of U.S. travelers expect to leave unused vacation days on the table in 2013 and even when they take time off, travelers struggle to leave the stress of work at the office according to a new Best Western Vacation Citation survey conducted with Wakefield Research.

Sixty-two (62) percent of travelers surveyed said they had difficulty taking vacation in the past 12 months and half said work frequently keeps them from relaxing while on vacation. Enjoying their time off is even tougher for frequent business travelers, as 52 percent say work is more likely to ruin their vacation than bad weather.  

To empower travelers to take vacation, Best Western has launched its Vacation Citation contest on Facebook. Participants can join Best Western's "Vacation Citation Nation" by issuing themselves or their family and friends an official Vacation Citation and in turn they will automatically be entered in weekly drawings for prizes to inspire travel including Best Western Travel Cards, MasterCard and Amazon Gift Cards, Avis rental car vouchers and AAA/CAA memberships. Participants will also earn a chance at the Grand Prize, a dream vacation which includes a five night stay at any Best Western hotel in the world, round trip airfare, gift cards to use on vacation and more.

Additionally, members of Vacation Citation Nation will be automatically registered for Best Western's Spring Promotion, which gives Best Western Rewards members the chance to earn a free night just by staying three separate times at a Best Western hotel by April 14, 2013.

"Vacation Citation is a fun and interactive way to empower our online community to remind friends to use their vacation days," said Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Best Western International. "Our research shows it's not only difficult for many to take vacation, but it's also difficult to unplug when they do."

Additional highlights from Best Western's recent vacation survey include:

  • Vacation Unplugged: Fifty-five (55) percent of respondents said they cannot go a full week without checking work emails or voicemails and 45 percent admitted five days is the longest they can stay unplugged from work while on vacation.   
  • Women Are Better At Unplugging From Work Than Men:  More than half of women surveyed (53 percent) reported that they hardly ever or never are interrupted by work while on vacation versus 46 percent of men.
  • Vacation Crimes: Constantly checking work email or voicemail was cited as the top (29 percent) vacation crime among respondents. Also on the vacation rap sheet was sleeping the day away (23 percent) and skipping exciting plans to get business done (21 percent).
  • Vacation Escapes: "My job" was the overwhelming choice (64 percent) when asked what respondents need a vacation from. Interestingly, 22 percent of women said they most need a vacation from their spouse or significant other versus only 15 percent of men surveyed. Also, 68 percent of those 35 and older reported that their job is the number one reason for needing a vacation yet a majority does not plan to take all of their vacation time.
  • Vacation Obstacles: Concern over spending money was the top choice (33 percent) among respondents when asked about the biggest obstacle to taking a vacation, followed by "too much work" (16 percent).

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