(Relaxnews) – An online petition calling for “vacation equality” in the US has shed light on the major differences in vacation time around the world and may make you want to move to France. Especially if you’re an American, Canadian or Japanese worker.
Because while workers in Canada and Japan get 10 days of paid vacation time a year, that number falls to zero for Americans. Nada.
That’s because paid time off for vacations and sick leave are determined by the employer. For one in four Americans — or 28 million — that means no paid holidays.
For comparison, French workers have 30 days of paid vacation time.
In fact, currently in France, most families are either sunning themselves in the South, splashing around on the beach, catching up on their sleep or traipsing around the world as the month of August is known as closing time, when the country enters shutdown mode.
Bakeries, restaurants and cafes close their doors for up to three weeks, office buildings are void of human life, and commuters — the few, poor schmucks stuck in the office — are more likely to find a seat on the eerily spacious metro.
While 30 days may be an ambitious target, online booking site Hotels.com has launched a petition that will ask the US government to bring “vacation equality” to the US — described as the only advanced economy in the world that does not guarantee any paid vacation days.
The petition needs 100,000 signatures before it can be sent to Washington. The promotional strategy isn’t entirely altruistic, as more vacation days would also boost hotel reservations for the online booking site.
According to statistics from a paper released last year by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, after France, workers in the UK get the second highest number of paid vacation days at 28, followed by Norway, Denmark, Finland and Sweden, where workers are entitled to 25 days.
After factoring in the number of paid public holidays and paid vacation days, Austria and Portugal came out on top. In addition to 22 days of paid vacation, both countries also boast 13 paid holidays, for a total of 35 days.
The petition has also been launched in other markets around the world, including France, where the French are also invited to sign the petition in a show of solidarity with their American friends.
At the time of writing, the petition has gathered about 13,660 signatures. The campaign ends August 15.
Details can be found at http://1.usa.gov/1kwHl6Z.