When I first set out in the working world and had to face the thought of only having 10 vacation days a year, I couldn’t wrap my head around it. You mean I could only have 10 days to myself the ENTIRE YEAR? Doesn’t that seem cruel?!
I certainly wasn’t pleased with my work-to-vacation ratio, but I dove right and discovered that the 10 days were manageable. Sure, I would have loved more time off (a lot more time off), but I quickly learned how to utilize personal days, maximize sick days and how to hug weekends and holidays to make vacations last a little longer.
My old job was super flexible. I only had to give a day’s notice before I’d be flying high with sweet little vacation day. My new job? Not so much.
Now I get 15 vacation days a year, which sounded like quite a bit at first. But when I found out that time off is determined on a first-come, first-served basis, I knew I had to act fast. Especially after my boss informed me that my coworker had saved almost all of his vacation time for the end of last year and caused quite a commotion. Much like the cartoon above, he left the team high and dry right at the busiest time of year because he hasn’t planned accordingly. And after hearing that, I certainly don’t want to be that guy.
Planning for the entire year is quite a daunting task. But I laid out my little calendar, had long talks with my boyfriend and my family, and somehow managed to plan out 99% of my vacation time and get it all approved. Phew.
At least it gives me something to look forward to. But I have to admit, it’s a bit stifling thinking that all my days off are already planned. So much for being spontaneous! I guess that’s what sick days are for, right?
My first vacation day is exactly 28 workdays away. Not that I’m counting or anything…
So what about you? How do you tackle vacation days? Do you have to plan them way far out like I do or can you simply fly by the seat of your pants?