Expedia Vacation Deprivation Report 2017: Indians #1 to feel very vacation deprived globally (25 percent), even though India Ranks at #5 this year

New Delhi, 04 January 2018: Expedia, the world’s largest full service online travel agency, yesterday released the results of the 2017 Vacation Deprivation study, an annual survey of vacation habits across multiple countries and continents. The survey ranks India as the 5th most vacation deprived country globally, just after South Korea (82%), France (66%), Malaysia (65%), and Hong Kong (64%). Findings that further corroborate this are 55% Indians take fewer days of the vacation days they get and 28% don’t take leaves as work schedule does not allow for vacation or there are not enough staff to cover.

Mr. Manmeet Ahluwalia, Marketing Head, Expedia in India said, “It is very important to inculcate an organizational culture that promotes healthy work-life balance through timely vacations. While technology helps us leave the office in time, it doesn’t necessarily mean that we are disconnected from work. As per our study this year- on a one-week vacation, 37% Indians would check their work email/voicemail more than once per day (#3 globally) and 21% check once per day (#2 globally). It is no surprise that 48% Indians feel the happiest during a vacation when they disconnect from work, even though the figures have dropped from 53% last year. A good vacation and disconnecting from work at least once or twice a year is crucial in rejuvenating not just the body, but the mind. 55% Indians feel that being vacation deprived results in decreased productivity at work while 64% are more focused once back from vacation. 34% Indians are even willing to take a cut in their salary for extra vacation days.”


 “As technology seeps in our lives, travelers are also increasingly using mobile during vacations to – research information about the destination (#2, 80%), booking activities or reservations while traveling (#1, 67%) manage travel itinerary (49%) and booking their next vacation (38%)”, he added.

 Annual vacation days received in 2017 (Median) – Highest: UAE, Finland, Spain, Germany, France, and Denmark (30) | Lowest: Taiwan, Hong Kong and Mexico (14%) and South Korea (10) | India (20 days v/s 21 in 2016).

Vacation days taken in 2017 (Median) – Highest: in Brazil, France, Spain, Germany, Finland (30) | Lowest: Japan, South Korea (10), Thailand (8) | India (15, same as 2016).

Longing for a vacation! Since…

A year or more- Highest: Brazil (44%), Australia (32%), New Zealand (32%) | India (16%, up from 12% in 2016)

Six months to a year- Highest: Argentina (55%), Mexico (53%), Finland (52%) | India (32%)

Three to six months- Highest: Denmark (49%), Austria (46%), Switzerland (44%) | India (33%)

One to three months- Highest: Japan (23%), Thailand (23%), Malaysia (22%), India (18%)

I take vacations every month- Lowest: Hong Kong (4%), India (2%, down from 4% in 2016)

Excuses over Vacations… (Reasons to not use vacation days)

I save them in case something comes up in the future- Highest: Thailand (54%), Malaysia (52%), Mexico (49%) | India (47%, #4)

I want to bank them / carry them over to next year for a longer vacation- Highest: Australia (37%), Sweden & Malaysia (36%) | India (34%, #4)

Work schedule does not allow for vacation / not enough staff to cover- Highest: Singapore (37%), Thailand (36%), South Korea (34%) | India (28%, #7; down from 40% in 2016)

Lack of money / cannot afford to take holidays / vacation- Highest: Australia & Malaysia (33%), New Zealand (31%) | India (25%, #4; up from 14% in 2016)

It is difficult to coordinate time to take a vacation that works for me and my spouse/partner/family member/friend- Highest: Hong Kong (32%), Singapore (30%), India & Malaysia (27%)

I can get money in exchange for my unused vacation days- Highest: Brazil (31%), India & Taiwan (30%)

Personal schedule does not allow for vacation- Highest: India & Thailand (28%), Malaysia (26%)

I fear that taking all of my vacation time will be perceived negatively by my employer: Thailand (17%), India (16%), South Korea (15%)

I feel like important work decisions will be made without me: India (24%), UAE (17%), Thailand (14%)

I fear that taking all of my vacation time will be perceived negatively by my colleagues: India (15%), South Korea & Thailand (11%)

I usually use all my vacation time due to illness: India (17%), Thailand & UAE (11%)

My manager does not use all of his / her vacation days: UAE (12%), South Korea & India (11%)

Vacation Patterns

One or two long vacations (more than one week in length)- Highest: Brazil (61%), Argentina (56%), Mexico, Finland (49%) | Lowest: Austria (24%), Malaysia (22%), Japan (19%) | India (46%, up from 41% in 2016)

Mix one long holiday and several short vacations- Highest: Austria (57%), Germany (53%), Norway (50%) | Lowest: South Korea (18%), Japan (13%) | India (26%, up from 41% in 2016)

Several short vacations / long weekend trips- Highest: Japan (49%), South Korea, Taiwan (39%) | Lowest: Germany (10%), Finland (9%), Norway (6%) | India (24%, down from 36% in 2016)

I don’t take the vacation days I get- Highest: South Korea (6%), Japan (5%), Austria (4%) | Lowest: Denmark, Norway, Finland, Belgium, Singapore (0%) | India (2%)

Extend business trips by a few days- Highest: Thailand (5%), India, Mexico (3%) | Lowest: USA< Argentina, Denmark, Germany, UK, Finland, New Zealand (0%)

Important Factors to take a solo trip? Independence #1

The opportunity to be independent- Highest: Malaysia (67%), India (64%), Finland (60%)

Time to reflect personally- Highest: Thailand (67%), Mexico (64%), Brazil (62%) | India (57%)

Plan on your own and not have to coordinate schedules with anyone; therefore, potentially leaving less vacation days on the table- Highest: Malaysia (61%), Thailand (60%), Taiwan (58%) | India (50%)

Choose your own accommodations / hotels- Highest: Finland (57%), Thailand (54%), India (53%)

Choose your own food / restaurants / dining- Highest: India (57%), Thailand (55%), Malaysia (50%)

It would allow you to ‘fly by the seat of your pants’- Highest: Norway (74%), Finland (58%), Hong Kong (57%) | India (31%)

Happiness @ Vacation

Quality time with family/partner/friends- Highest: India (76%), Malaysia (75%), Finland (73%)

Disconnecting from work: India (48%, #4, down from 53% in 2016)

Exploring somewhere new- Highest: Malaysia (73%), India (69%, down from 77% in 2016), Singapore (67%)

Experiencing different cultures and cuisines- Highest: Taiwan (77%), Malaysia (69%), Hong Kong (63%) | India (62%, #4)

Meeting new people- Highest: India (53%), Brazil & Thailand (46%)

Vacation romance- Highest: UAE (44%), India (41%, down from 49% in 2016), Thailand (39%)

Complimentary perks, i.e. spa treatments or in-room dining- Highest: India (32%), Singapore (32%), Thailand (31%)

Room upgrades- Highest: Thailand (25%), India (23%), Mexico & Malaysia (20%)

Leveraging Mobile tech while travelling (besides work)

To research information about the destination being visited- Highest: Malaysia (87%), India (80%, up from 68% in 2016), Thailand (75%)

To share images of my vacation with family and friends- Highest: India (75%- up from 63% in 2016), Malaysia (71%), Argentina (70%)

To check in on social media- Highest: India (72%), Brazil & Argentina (70%)

To manage my itinerary- Highest: Malaysia (66%), Singapore, Thailand & Italy (60%) | India (49%, #12)

To book activities or reservations while I am traveling- Highest: India (67%-up from 57% in 2016), Malaysia (66%), New Zealand & Hong Kong (59%)

To meet people- Highest: Hong Kong (49%), Brazil (46%), Thailand (44%) | India (43%, #4)

To book my next vacation- Highest: Thailand (47%), Brazil (40%), UAE (39%) | India (38%, #4)

Vacation + Work = Vacation Deprivation

57% Indians decide the length of a trip basis the impending workload after they come back from vacation

Indians have not taken a holiday in the last 6 months because 37% can’t afford a holiday, 36% can’t get time off from work and 27% are saving up time for a long holiday

On a one-week vacation, 37% Indians would check their work email/voicemail more than once per day (#3), 21% check once per day (#2) and 10% never check

33% Indians feel more stressed by checking in at work while on holiday while 26% feel less stressed (#1)

60% Indians (#5) in total agree that they feel somewhat or very vacation deprived

Indians rank #1 in the world for feeling very vacation deprived (25%)

Indians feel that they deserve 14.5 more vacation days (rank #3 globally) over and above what they get today, preceded by UAE (29.8) and Brazil (14.8) {number of days calculated by median of all values}

55% Indians feel that being vacation deprived results in decreased productivity

76% Indians (#2) say their employers are supportive of them taking their vacation time

Indians still #4 in feeling guilty, about taking their vacation days (10%)

67% Indians (#3) have cancelled or postponed vacation plans because of work, Thailand (75%), UAE (70%)

While 74% Indians said that they preferred unlimited vacation policy, only 23% said that their employer currently has an unlimited vacation policy

Balancing it out!

While travelling for work, 82% Indians are likely to add personal vacation days to a business / professional trip

60% Indians spend time at work dreaming and planning about vacations, while 15% do none

42% Indians spend 1 hour or less (lowest) at work dreaming and planning about potential vacations, while 33% spend 2hours (#2) and 16% spend 3hours (#1)

Indians & Brazilians #1 in booking their next vacation during their current holiday (11%)

35% Indians wait for more than 3months and 30% wait for 1-3months after returning from a vacation, to plan their next vacation

58% Indians believe that a “mental health day” should be considered as vacation time over 42% who feel it should be considered as a sick leave

Vacation Benefits

Professional (Indians): Come back to work more relaxed (#2, 75%), more productive (#2, 66%), more focused (#1, 64%), have a better attitude (59%), think more holistically/big-picture (33%)

Emotional/ Mental Health (Indians): Come back feeling relaxed (#1, 78%), feel rejuvenated and have a better outlook both personally and professionally (#2, 65%), Come back feeling less anxious and worried, but instead more organized and ready to take on the next challenge (#2, 51%), Come back feeling patient (50%), Take fewer sick days throughout the year (#3, 28%)

Sacrifices for Vacations

97% Indians willing to give up something for a week in order to have one extra day of vacation including – Alcohol #3, 46%- up from 41% in 2016), Dessert: India (#5, 39%- up from 31% in 2016), Social media (50%, #3), Television: (#2, 54%- up from 47% in 2016), Coffee (#1, 46%-up from 35% in 2016), Sex (#8 least willing at 23%- up from 17% in 2016), Contact with your best friend (#2, 31%), Cell phone / smartphone (#1, 34%- up from 26% in 2016), Internet: India (#1, 34%), and Taking a shower (#2, 20%)

Anything for more vacation days!

New Job? Yes!

87% Indians (#1) consider number of vacation days as an important factor to decide on a new job

Other than more money, Indians #3 globally most likely to ask for more vacation time (30%, up from 23% in 2016) as part of a job negotiation, while 19% ask for work from home (#4) and flex scheduling. Indians asking for better insurance has increased from 3% in 2016 to 9% in 2017

34% Indians (#2) feel comfortable taking vacation days within 1-3 months of joining a new job, while 24% take between 3-6months, 19% in 6months to 1 year and 12% take immediately

New Continent? We are game!

If Indians had the opportunity to relocate to Europe, according to 23% (up from 18% in 2016) would see the best benefit to be 25-30 days of paid vacation, along with better work opportunities (35%, #4) and experiencing a different culture (32%, #9).


This study was conducted on behalf of Expedia by Northstar Research Partners, a global strategic research firm. The survey was conducted online from September 4-15, 2017 across North America, Europe, South America and Asia-Pacific using an amalgamated group of best-in-class panels. The study was conducted among 15,081 respondents across 30 countries.

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