Japanese take least vacation days while French use the most

SYDNEY Thu Jun 24, 2010 9:23am EDT

1 of 2. People sit on the grass and sunbathe near the Trocadero fountains across from the Eiffel Tower on a hot summer day in Paris on August 6, 2009.

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SYDNEY (Reuters Life!) - The Japanese are the most holiday-deprived nation in the developed world, taking an average nine days off a year, while the French enjoy the most, averaging 34.5 days off annually, a survey found.

A poll of 9,000 adults in 13 countries by Harris Interactive for online travel company Expedia found Japanese workers not only got the least vacation of about 16.5 days a year but they tended to use only about half of them.

The French, however, get the highest number of vacation days a year, an average of 37.5, and were happy to take almost full advantage of this R&R.

The United States gave workers the second-least number of days off a year, averaging 17, of which most people would take 14, according to the so-called vacation deprivation survey conducted between April 13 and April 22.

New Zealanders were given an average of 19.5 days vacation a year and would take about 17 while Australians usually took off about 16.5 days of the 20 days' holiday permitted.

Danes, Germans, and Norwegians were most likely to take full advantage of the days given, using 93 percent of their allocated vacation of 29, 27.5, and 28 days respectively.

Canadians tend to use 90 percent of an average holiday allowance of 20 days, Swedes use 89 percent of 27.5 days, Britons use 91 percent of 28 days, Italians use 82 percent of 32.5 days, and Spaniards use 89 percent of 32 days.

(Writing by Belinda Goldsmith, Editing by Dean Goodman)

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