HALLOWELL- As part of National Plan for Vacation Day on January 29, 2019 The Maine Tourism Association encourages businesses and their employees to come together and rally around the importance of planning for vacation.

Every year, more than half of Americans (52%) fail to use all their time off, creating a stock pile of 705 million unused vacation days, up from 662 million days the year before. Last year 46% of Mainers left paid vacation time on the table resulting in 2,519,697 unused vacation days.

“National Plan for Vacation Day is an opportunity for Mainers to take part in a designated day to plan their vacations. And who better than the travel industry to help plan the perfect vacation?” said Roger Dow, President and CEO, U.S. Travel Association. “America offers something for everyone, whether you prefer a sunny day at the beach or a snowball fight in the mountains. We encourage every American to plan their time off to explore our great country.”

The most effective remedy for American workers who want to use more vacation days is better planning. Yet just over half (52%) of households set aside time to plan the use of their vacation time each year.

“The Maine Tourism Association is celebrating National Plan for Vacation Day because we want to encourage Mainers to take their well-deserved time off,” said Chris Fogg, CEO, Maine Tourism Association. “And what better way to take a day than to travel? By committing to planning on January 29, Mainers can all reap the benefits of taking a break while giving themselves something to look forward to.”

Research shows that planners have a distinct advantage over non-planners: They use more of their time, take longer vacations, and are happier.

  • 53 percent of planners took all of their vacation time vs. 43 percent of non-planners.
  • Planners are also more likely than non-planners to use all or most of their time off to travel (33% to 18%).
  • More planners report they are “very” or “extremely” happy with their personal relationships (81% vs. 68%), health and well-being (56% vs. 43%), company (57% vs. 50%), and job (56% vs. 48%) compared to non-planners.

To help employees get their vacation days on the calendar, U.S. Travel Association created a vacation planning tool. By simply entering the number of days off earned, users can plot out their trips or vacations for the year, export to their work or personal calendar, and share with their family and co-workers.

National Plan for Vacation Day is celebrated the last Tuesday in January, as a day to encourage Americans to plan their vacation days for the rest of the year at the start of the year. For more information on National Plan for Vacation Day and tips on planning your next Maine vacation, go to mainetourism.com/letsgo.

The Maine Tourism Association represents more than 1,500 members across the state, promoting the tourism industry. Members include small and large businesses that provide traditional tourism interests such as accommodations, restaurants, camps, campgrounds, retail establishments, and cultural and heritage attractions.