Over Half of Americans Took Their Last Vacation Over a Year Ago

On average, employed Americans take roughly only half of their entitled vacation days.

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  • Sean Simpson SVP, Canada, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC, July 10, 2019 — According to an Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of Allianz Global Assistance, over half (51%) of Americans took their last vacation over a year ago including a third (36%) who have not vacationed in over two years. Only 2 in 10 (21%) of Americans took their last vacation in the last 3 months, however, this is up 7 points since 2017.

Less than half (42%) of Americans are confident they will take a summer vacation this year, dipping to the lowest recorded confidence rating since 2013. Gen X’ers (48% vs 37% Baby Boomers), high income earners (63% $100K+ vs. 28% <35K, 40% $35K<$50K), and those who think vacation is important (57% vs. 20% who do not) are more likely to display confidence in taking a summer vacation this year. However, even among the subset of Americans who say a vacation is important to them, there is a vacation deficit, as 2 in 10 (19%, down 2 points since last year) are not confident that they will take a vacation this year.

Those Americans who are not confident they will take a summer vacation this year cite financial reasons (52%) as a hindrance, highest among Gen X’ers (71% vs. 38% Millennials, 50% Baby Boomers). At the same time, 1 in 10 (14%) cannot take time off work and Millennials (25% vs 7% Baby Boomers) and males (20% vs 9% female) are most likely to indicate this is the reason for their lack of confidence. Interestingly, another 1 in 10 (12%) do not actually want to take time off work, while other reasons include that they have personal obligations requiring their time (20%) and that they find planning a vacation too stressful (10%).

This year’s vacation index has also compared vacation habits of employees and their bosses. Working Americans report that on average, they take less than half (41%) of their entitled vacation days, while 2 in 10 (17%) do not take any at all. Though over half (52%) of employed Americans indicate that their bosses take equal proportion of their entitled vacation days, on average they report that their bosses take over half (51%) of their entitled vacation days and only 9% of bosses are reported to not take any vacation days.

Despite the low confidence ratings, it must be noted that annual vacations are still important to 6 in 10 (60%) of Americans, which has in fact edged upwards since 2018 (58%), though it is still lower than historic highs of 67% in 2009 or 65% just three years ago.

*Vacation has been defined as a leisure travel of at least a week, to a destination at least 100 miles from your home.


About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between May 30 and June 2 2019, on behalf of Allianz Global Assistance. For this survey, a sample of 1,005 American adults was interviewed by telephone via the Caravan Omnibus. Generational categories are being loosely defined as follows: Millennials aged 18-34, Gen X aged 35-54, and Baby Boomers aged 55+). Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of random telephone polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ±3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Americans adults been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Sean Simpson

Vice President, Public Affairs

+1 416 324-2002

[email protected]

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The author(s)

  • Sean Simpson SVP, Canada, Public Affairs