Stop making excuses, start planning vacations

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

We urged everyone to file their tax return as early as possible, so we hope you’ll indulge us with one more piece of advice:

Plan your vacation early as well.

National Plan for Vacation Day was actually Tuesday, but if you do it soon, you’ll be far ahead of the 46 percent of Americans who fail to set aside time to plan their vacation time each year.

The Nebraska Tourism Commission is trying to change that.

Sixty-six percent of Nebraska employees leave vacation time unused, for a total of nearly 5 million stays unused. Nationally, more than half of Americans fail to use all their time off, creating a stockpile of 662 million unused vacation days.

“Nebraska is celebrating National Plan for Vacation Day because it’s time for Americans to reclaim their vacation days,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism executive director. “By planning, we can all reap the benefits of taking a break while giving yourself something to look forward to, like maybe a trip to or across our beautiful state.”

Like any accomplishment, planning pays off.

Nebraska Tourism would naturally like to see Nebraskans or visitors spend some of that time off in our state, since unused vacation time represents a potential $382 million boost to our state’s economy.

Southwest Nebraska is well positioned to host both in-state and out-of-state visitors, with our great hunting fishing, golfing and other leisure time opportunities.

The United States is the only first-world country that doesn’t require companies to provide paid annual leave or holidays, although most do. France leads with requiring 30 days of paid annual leave and one paid national holiday.

More than 600 organizations, representing all 50 states, got together to encourage Americans to plan for vacation. Find out more at ProjectTimeOff.com/Plan or use #PlanForVacation for an online conversation.

Closer to home — and we do hope you will explore the many great Nebraska opportunities — check out VisitNebraska.com or Visit Nebraska on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube.

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