Pay-cut in return for vacations? Yes, says India

India is the fourth most vacation deprived nation globally, according to Expedia’s 2014 Vacation Deprivation. 67% of Indians said they feel very or somewhat vacation deprived, the annual analysis of vacation habits said.

35% of the global respondents said they would take a cut in salary for extra vacation – highest among those in India (60%), Malaysia (48%) and Singapore (46%). In fact, if given the choice, 30% globally would prefer more vacation days over a pay raise, with the preference for more vacation strongest in India (49%), Japan (42%), Malaysia (40%) and Denmark (40%)

The survey also reveals that 64% of Indians who feel vacation deprived say their vacation deprivation stems from not getting enough vacation days, while 36% say their deprivation stems from not taking all of their vacation days.


The study was conducted on behalf of Expedia by Northstar. This survey was conducted online from August 25 to September 17, 2014 across North America, Europe, South America and Asia Pacific among 7,855 employed adults aged 18 years of age and older across 24 countries.

Due to increased work pressure and the inability to be away from work for longer periods, Indians are increasingly choosing to take multiple short vacations, than a longer one and disconnect with work. So while Indians are among the most eager to plan their next vacation immediately after returning from vacation, 50% of Indians typically use their vacation days on several shorter trip, while only 26% say they typically use their days on one long trip, the survey found.

“Vacations play an important role in maintaining the work life balance, and general wellbeing of the employees while reenergizing them to be more focused at work. According to the survey, Indians are globally highest at feeling more focused at work (50%) after a vacation. In fact, 24% of Indians strongly agree the chance for more vacation days would motivate them to change jobs,” said Vikram Malhi, Managing Director, Asia, Expedia.

Other findings include –

Indians receive an average of 19.6 vacation days from their employer each year. They take an average of 15.5 vacation days, with over half (52%) reporting taking fewer days then they receive.

The two most common reasons for not taking all their vacation days are a work schedule that does not allow for vacation time (26%) and a personal schedule that does not allow for vacation time (25%).

Other possible reasons for not using all of their vacation time include wanting to bank their days for one longer vacation next year (23%), the ability to get money in exchange for unused vacation days (22%) and difficulty coordinating a time that works for spouse, partner, family members, etc. (21%)

40% of Indians cannot plan vacation in advance due to work, 4th highest globally after Thailand (43%), Singapore & South Korea (42%).

32% of Indians cannot plan vacation in advance because of the work demands of their spouse/partner/other family members. Indians globally second highest in cancelling vacation due to work (74%) after Thailand (77%)

50% of Indians typically use their vacation days to take several short vacations/long weekend trips, while 26% say they typically take their days as one long trip. For 11% of Indians, their vacation days are typically tied to weddings or family obligations, while 7% use their vacation days to extend work trips to include vacation, both highest globally. Indians are less likely than their global counterparts to spend their vacation days taking care of errands or projects around the house (3%).

Globally, being on vacation outranks finding money, getting a tax refund, celebrating a birthday, even being told you look younger, as the thing that makes people the happiest, with 48% ranking it #1. When they return from vacation, 85% of people globally agree they feel better rested. In fact, on average, people get one extra hour of sleep per night while on vacation.

Further, 80% of employed adults globally associate vacationing a great deal or a fair amount with their overall happiness. Those from Thailand (96%), India (95%), UAE (90%) and Brazil (90%) are most likely to associate vacationing with their overall happiness. After returning from a vacation, Indians feel happier (92%), closer to partner and family members (92%), more focused at work (globally highest at 89%), less stressed & more relaxed (89%) and better rested (91%).

Further, satisfaction with one’s love life increases proportionately with the number of vacation days they take. In fact, Indians are most likely to strongly agree that regular vacations are important to their relationship with their significant other (72%).

Globally, 15% feel guilty about taking their vacation days. Indians rank #4 at 20% while Japanese top the list at 26%.

After returning from vacation, globally, 42% say it takes a few days for the “vacation high” to wear off. Indians are among the most likely to say their “vacation high” wears off within a day (57%), second behind Japan (66%). This is perhaps why 43% of Indians wait no more than a month after returning home from vacation to book their next vacation (among the highest globally)

89% of employed adults globally are willing to make sacrifices for more vacation time
Overall, individuals from India (96%), Italy (92%) and UAE (92%) are the most willing to make sacrifices for more vacation days.

More results:

    Globally, 54% of employed adults would be willing to give up junk food for a week in exchange for 1 extra day of vacation – highest in Denmark (68%), Sweden (66%), Italy (65%) and Mexico (65%)
    48% would give up alcohol for a week – Highest in Austria, Norway (57%) and Germany (56%)
    43% would give up dessert for a week – Highest in Sweden (59%), Norway (58%) and Denmark (53%)
    42% would give up social media – Highest in Austria (51%), Germany (50%), Sweden, US and New Zealand (49%)
    37% would go without television -Highest in India (47%), Brazil & Spain (44%)
    35% would give up coffee -Highest in Spain (42%), UK (41%) and Norway (40%)
    24% would give up sex – Highest among those in Sweden (36%), Japan & Hong Kong (32%) and lowest in Mexico (7%), Brazil (13%) and Italy (14%); 25% Indians agree, higher than global avg.
    Only 55% say their boss is supportive of employees taking their vacation time vs. 65% last year. 64% of Indians say their bosses are supportive of employees taking their vacation time