By Talia Avakian
October 18, 2018

Vacation deprivation levels are at a five-year high for U.S. workers, according to Expedia’s 18th annual Vacation Deprivation study.

The study looks at vacation usage and trends across 19 countries based on responses from over 11,000 employed adults over the age of 18. According to the results, U.S. workers will waste a staggering 653.9 million vacation days in 2018.

The study also found that the number of vacation days both awarded to and taken by U.S. workers has hit a five-year low, with the average U.S. worker receiving a total of 14 vacation days in 2018 and taking only 10.

As for the reason Americans did not use their vacation days, more than half (54 percent) said they had not taken in a vacation in over six months because they couldn’t afford the getaway while 23 percent said they were saving up for a longer holiday.

Another 17 percent said they couldn't get time off from work, while 13 percent said they felt guilty about taking the time off they did get. A total of 25 percent of respondents also said they check in on work at least once a day when they do take a vacation.

Another 28 percent of Americans said they go a year or longer between trips.

Credit: Courtesy of Expedia

The U.S., Japan, and Thailand were the three countries whose workers took the least amount of vacation days taken in 2018. While Japanese workers received an average of 20 days off, they used only 10.

Meanwhile, workers in Thailand used all of their 10 allotted vacations days, but still fell at the bottom of the list because they received far less days off than countries like Brazil, France, Germany, and Spain (all of which had 30 days per year).

Credit: Courtesy of Expedia

Fifty-four percent of Japanese respondents said they did not take a vacation because they could not get time off of work, while 33 percent said they could not afford a trip and 9 percent said they were saving up for a longer holiday.

Meanwhile, 27 percent of respondents from Thailand did not travel because they did not know where to go, while 25 percent said they were saving up for a longer holiday, 24 percent said they could not afford to take a trip, and 24 percent said they could not get time off of work.

While Americans fell on the bottom of the list when it came to the number of days they took off, a total of 81 percent said they take vacations focused on a goal of “mental wellness,” with the average American worker taking two mental health days each year as a part of their time off.