Despite improvement in the amount of vacation days Americans used last year, more than half (54 percent) of employees still left time on the table in 2016.
The 662 million days left unused last year—and their implications for individual employees and workplaces alike—are not felt evenly across America.
There are profound geographical differences in U.S. states and cities that influence employees' time off perceptions and behavior.
Project: Time Off's new report, "Under-Vacationed America: An Analysis of the States and Cities That Need to Take a Day," provides a look at the vacation behavior in all 50 states and the 30-largest metro areas in the country. Idaho, New Hampshire and Alaska hold the top spots for the states with the most workers leaving vacation unused.
Looking at cities, Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Tampa Bay are home to some of the most under-vacationed employees in America.
"Across America, vacation has become the unintended victim of a 24/7 work culture, but there are specific parts of the country living on the edge of burnout where employees particularly need to take time off," said Katie Denis, Project: Time Off’s senior director and report author, in a written release. “The states and cities that have the dubious honor of being at the top of the unused vacation list would do well to realize that employees who take time off are happier, healthier, and more productive."
Unfortunately, many of the areas seeing the worst vacation usage are home to cultures where employees report hearing negative or mixed messages about time off. Where just 17 percent of workers nationally say their company sends negative or mixed messages, the majority of the states in the top ten for leaving unused vacation are more likely to agree, most notably Alaskan workers at 28 percent.
There are some states and cities that are better at vacation usage. Maine, Hawaii, and Arizona top the list of states with employees who are least likely to leave vacation time on the table. For cities, Pittsburgh, Chicago and Phoenix are home to employees who take more of their earned time off.