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Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Old Feb 29th 2012, 2:37 am
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Default Only 10 Days Vacation per year

So for any of you who are living in the UK, please consider something that may not be a big deal at the time, but will eat away at you over time living in the USA....Vacation allowance.

I am a British Expat living in California. I start a new job next week after being unemployed for 8 months. And as much as I appreciate a new job, yet again I have to laugh and cry at the poor vacation allowance you get in America. Oh and I was told they usually only give new employees 5 days per year, but they wanted to give me 10 days. I should feel special I guess.

So if you live in the UK right now and get between 25 to 30 days per year holiday allowance, would you be willing to give that up and come to America to work 50 or 51 weeks of the year instead?

If you lose your job in the UK you can still get treated on the NHS for FREE. While in America you can be broke with no healthcare. A friend of mine who recently moved to America had to pay $125 doctors fee just to see him for 15 minutes for a antibiotic prescription for a cold virus. He was shocked. My reply was "Welcome to America".

My plan is to stay here for another 4-5 years while I finish University, pay off most of the house and wait for the housing market to rise/or rent our property.

I like many things about America, but I need my work / social life balance back again. Something which you already get while living in the UK. So please think ahead before moving to America.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 3:34 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

All very valid points.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 3:52 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Yes, there is something very shit about moving countries to experience life there but not getting enough time to actually be able to go off and explore things.

You just end up planning to make better use of the 3 day weekends etc.

Though a lot of folks who did move here for work reasons often get better holiday allowances...but then again, it doesn't help much if they have spouses working who don't get enough time off to enjoy things together.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 4:52 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

10 days luxury!! I went from 7 weeks to none, nada, zero, really excited for my 4 days unpaid starting this week.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 5:09 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

I know with the economy right now we can't afford to be picky when looking for a job but I do think that companies in the U.S. are starting to come round to the fact re work life balance and providign a better package for time off - at least this is what I have experienced.

I have found orgs that provide 15 - 20 days plus sick leave and another factor there are more federal holidays in the U.S. than national holidays in the U.K.

You could carry on looking for another role with an org that provides a better package.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 6:09 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Originally Posted by bromleygirl View Post
I have found orgs that provide 15 - 20 days plus sick leave and another factor there are more federal holidays in the U.S. than national holidays in the U.K.
US: New Year's Day, MLK Day (maybe), President's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving (2), Christmas Day = 8 or 9. I guess federal employees also get Columbus Day (?) and Veterans Day.

UK: New Year's Day, Good Friday (maybe), Easter Monday, May 1st, May Bank Holiday, August Bank Hoilday, Christmas Day, Boxing Day = 7 or 8.

Doesn't really make even a dent on the difference in vacation allowance.

Last edited by Giantaxe; Feb 29th 2012 at 6:16 am.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 7:00 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Originally Posted by essexnick View Post
pay $125 doctors fee just to see him for 15 minutes for a antibiotic prescription for a cold virus.
Your friend should have saved the $125. Antibiotics won't do anything for a virus.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 7:03 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

That varies a lot in the US between companies. The following is a list vacation days for the first year for major Silicon Valley companies. For example, Adobe System starts with 24 days plus a 3 week sabbatical every 5 years, Intel starts with 15 days plus a 8 week sabbatical every 7 years, Oracle with 13 days and no sabbatical, Wells Fargo at 25 days and no sabbatical, to other companies with as little as 10 days.

http://www.riverbed.com/docs/Article...acestoWork.pdf

Besides the vacation days and sabbaticals, there is also a large variations in other benefits such as on site child care, hair cuts, dry cleaning, dental care, and oil changes, telecommuting, tuition reimbursements, maternity and paternity leaves, flexible spending accounts, recreation centers, bring your dog to work, Friday afternoon parties, free off site fitness memberships, free lunch everyday, college scholarships for employees children, free shuttle service, flexible work hours, and many other benefits.

So with a certain company you may only start with 10-15 days but have so many other benefits to make your life so much easier. For example, a mother may desire to have 2 weeks vacation a year and be provided with free on site child care where she can drop off and pick up her child at any time instead of 6 weeks vacation but off site child care that she must pay for and spend an extra hour per day dropping off and picking up her child at specific times.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 7:29 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Originally Posted by Giantaxe View Post
US: New Year's Day, MLK Day (maybe), President's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving (2), Christmas Day = 8 or 9. I guess federal employees also get Columbus Day (?) and Veterans Day.

UK: New Year's Day, Good Friday (maybe), Easter Monday, May 1st, May Bank Holiday, August Bank Hoilday, Christmas Day, Boxing Day = 7 or 8.

Doesn't really make even a dent on the difference in vacation allowance.
If you're lucky enough to work for a company that observes that many US bank holidays. Mine only allows six: New Year's Day; Memorial Day; Independence Day; Labour Day; Thanksgiving DAY (note just the one) and Christmas Day.

Back home I was a civil servant - I was spoiled for leave with my 25 annual leave days and being in NI I got a few extra bank holidays (St Patrick's Day, July 12th and 13th and we got three days off over Christmas).

Given that I started at my company with no days at all, it was rather a shock, especially off the back of a year unemployed because of a delay in processing my EAD and Green Card after I got married. I got lucky two years in when my supervisor extended my 5 days leave to ten in lieu of a decent raise at review time. If she hadn't done that, I'd have only just hit the ten days allowance last year
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 8:25 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

I'm working for the US arm of a British company, and for Officers (basically anyone who works over 40 hours a week) we get 20 days, 5 personal days and all public holidays.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 11:41 am
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

My company gives us 9 fixed holidays, 3 "floating" (you chose from a list of fixed dates) plus 15 days vacation rising to 20 days after three years, 25 after 5. Plus sick days (forget how many). I transfered from the UK and they count my UK service so I go up to 20 days tomorrow.

Yes, we do appear in the list of best companies to work for in NYC.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 12:04 pm
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Originally Posted by essexnick View Post

If you lose your job in the UK you can still get treated on the NHS for FREE. While in America you can be broke with no healthcare. A friend of mine who recently moved to America had to pay $125 doctors fee just to see him for 15 minutes for a antibiotic prescription for a cold virus. He was shocked. My reply was "Welcome to America".

well why ask for antibiotics for virus?! why see a doctor for a cold? all questions to ask. probably why the NHS is overstretched if everyone goes for a cold
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 12:42 pm
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Originally Posted by essexnick View Post
So for any of you who are living in the UK, please consider something that may not be a big deal at the time, but will eat away at you over time living in the USA....Vacation allowance.

I am a British Expat living in California. I start a new job next week after being unemployed for 8 months. And as much as I appreciate a new job, yet again I have to laugh and cry at the poor vacation allowance you get in America. Oh and I was told they usually only give new employees 5 days per year, but they wanted to give me 10 days. I should feel special I guess.

So if you live in the UK right now and get between 25 to 30 days per year holiday allowance, would you be willing to give that up and come to America to work 50 or 51 weeks of the year instead?
Yes, vacation time is definitely something to ask about and take into consideration before accepting a job offer. The time to negotiate is before the job offer is accepted. It doesn't always work but it doesn't hurt to try. If the vacation time is a problem, no-one is forcing you to take the job. In reality, vacation time varies widely and usually increases with years of service. I currently get 28 days of vacation plus public holidays.

Originally Posted by essexnick View Post
If you lose your job in the UK you can still get treated on the NHS for FREE. While in America you can be broke with no healthcare. A friend of mine who recently moved to America had to pay $125 doctors fee just to see him for 15 minutes for a antibiotic prescription for a cold virus. He was shocked. My reply was "Welcome to America".
Yes, the health insurance situation in the US is a real pain and is possibly the worst thing about living here. The health care itself is great if you have access to it. But as you rightly point out, being out of work in the US is a lot more difficult than being out of work in the UK.

Originally Posted by essexnick View Post
My plan is to stay here for another 4-5 years while I finish University, pay off most of the house and wait for the housing market to rise/or rent our property.
Good luck with that! The housing market in the US is likely to be stagnant for a long time. Obviously there are regional differences so hopefully you'll get lucky.

Originally Posted by essexnick View Post
I like many things about America, but I need my work / social life balance back again. Something which you already get while living in the UK. So please think ahead before moving to America.
Agree - that is an important consideration. I wouldn't say everyone in the UK has the balance right but, in general, the vacation time in the UK is better and it helps.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 12:42 pm
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

The vacation situation is far better if you work in the public sector or for a university.

I get 21 days vacation and 13 days of public holidays.
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Old Feb 29th 2012, 12:45 pm
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Default Re: Only 10 Days Vacation per year

Originally Posted by rpjs View Post
My company gives us 9 fixed holidays, 3 "floating" (you chose from a list of fixed dates) plus 15 days vacation rising to 20 days after three years, 25 after 5. Plus sick days (forget how many). I transfered from the UK and they count my UK service so I go up to 20 days tomorrow.

Yes, we do appear in the list of best companies to work for in NYC.
Getting a separate allowance for sick days is very unusual in the US. Most US workers have to use vacation time if they are off work sick.
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