Earlier today (25 July), travel agency Brand Expedia released the findings from its 2018 Vacation Deprivation® Study, which shows that vacation deprivation is on the rise among full-time workers in Singapore and across the globe.
Nearly nine in 10 (88%) of Singaporean employees felt that they deserve more annual leave in 2018, with nearly eight in 10 (77%) willing to take a pay cut to get an extra day off.
What’s more, over six in 10 Singaporeans (63%) said that they are deprived of vacations last year. This is up from 57% in 2017 and 41% in 2016; hence, bumping Singapore up by one spot to become the sixth most vacation-deprived market in the world.
On a global scale, 58% of full-time workers said that they are deprived of vacations in 2018, up from 53% in 2017 and 49% in 2016.
This study was conducted with 11,000 full-time working adults across 19 markets, including 300 respondents in Singapore.

Singapore Ranked the Sixth Most Vacation-Deprived Market in the World
In the midst of growing vacation deprivation sentiments all across the globe, Asia Pacific stood out as the most vacation-deprived region in the world. Seven in 10 of the most vacation-deprived markets came from Asia Pacific – led by India, South Korea, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand, respectively.
Markets such as India (15%) and Thailand (14%) also registered the biggest jumps in vacation deprivation sentiments this year. This was followed by the United States, which registered the third largest increase of 9%, while Singapore came in fourth with an increase of 6% in vacation deprivation sentiments over 2017.
Additionally, the study unveiled that younger workers aged between 18 to 34 exhibited higher levels of vacation deprivation sentiments compared to older workers.
About 67% of Singaporean workers aged 18 to 34 said that they are deprived of vacations, followed by 65% of workers aged 35 to 49, and 52% of workers aged 50 and above who shared similar sentiments.

Singaporeans Remain Connected to Work Even During Vacations
Besides that, the study deduced that half of Singaporean employees did not use up their annual leave. When asked about the reasons for not taking the time off, being unable to get time off work emerged as the top reason for doing so among 39% of Singaporeans – the highest in the world.
Other justifications included the desire to save up time for a long holiday (30%) and being unable to afford a holiday (22%).
Even when Singaporean employee go on holidays, more than half (53%) admitted that they tend to stay connected to work during their vacation time, with 79% checking emails or voicemail at least once.
What’s more, 30% felt that they are expected to be constantly available by their supervisors – the third highest percentage globally after India and Malaysia.
Taking Mental-Health Days a Growing Trend in Singapore and Asia Pacific
With regards to the growing trend of mental-health days, the study indicated that Singaporeans are placing greater importance on their mental health, with 70% having taken at least one mental health day in the past year to relieve stress and focus on their mental well-being.
On average, Singaporeans took 3 mental health days last year and an additional 2.8 days on average for life administration.
“In a dynamic, fast-paced society like Singapore, it came as no surprise that workers want more annual leave to go on vacations. Taking regular, quality vacations is known to provide numerous positive benefits to the personal and professional well-being of workers across the globe,” said Lavinia Rajaram, Head of Communications for Asia Pacific at Brand Expedia.
“As vacation deprivation continues to rise in Singapore, it is now more important than ever for business leaders to identify the reasons behind these sentiments in order to foster an enabling culture for employees to take quality time off and make the most of their vacation time, for the good of their personal and professional well-being in the long run,” she added.

Image via Yuganov Konstantin/Shutterstock
Editor’s note:
Human beings aren’t robots. We do not fare well if working 24/7 is a norm. A proper work-life balance is something we yearn for; which is why we love holidays. We’ll seize every chance we get to go on vacation to relax and unwind.
Hence, taking into account the findings from the aforementioned survey, it is no surprise that a great majority of Singaporeans have concerns or rather unhappy regarding their employment leaves. In fact, did you know that Singapore is one of the countries in Southeast Asia that has the least number of public holidays?
In an article published by Mashable Southeast Asia which ranked Southeast Asian countries based on the number of public holidays each has for 2019, Singapore falls amongst the third lowest from the 10 countries listed.
Singapore registered only 14 public holidays, surpassing Laos (13 days) by a day margin, and Vietnam (11 days) by three days.
Meanwhile, Malaysia topped the list with 50 public holidays, followed by Cambodia with 31 days, and Thailand with 26 days.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
You May Also Like

NSL trains to resume normal speeds after sleeper replacements

Commuters along the North-South MRT line (NSL) can expect train speeds to return…

网安局长曾赞扬“称职” 调查总结打脸:职员缺乏素养 “人为疏失本可避免”

新闻评析:独立调查委员会针对去年发生新保集团遭骇事件,呈交400多页的报告,调查结果将此事归咎于人为疏失,指相关资讯科技职员缺乏意识和素养,一些关键人员没有采取有效行动。 根据《联合早报》报导,委员会在报告书中引述负责印证的副总检察长郭民力高级律师: “袭击者鬼祟但不是寂静无声的,网袭还是有迹可循。针对这些迹象,应该采取行动却没有这么做,要么是因为相关职员没意识到袭击正展开,要么是负责职员无动于衷。他们如果采取了适当,袭击者在得逞前就能被制止。” 报告指“虽然我们的网络防御并非坚不可摧,但也不代表我们无法避免被袭击者盗取和渗透数据。” 报告列出五大调查结果: 1)综合保健信息系统公司(IHiS)职员没恰当网袭意识、素养和资源,无法领会他们察觉到的征兆会引起严重保安后果,以及有效应对攻击。 2)一些负责应对IT保安事故的IHiS关键职员,没采取适当、有效或及时行动,造成数据在网袭中被窃或渗透。 3)新保集团的网络和临床信息管理系统,存在数个在网袭前就能补救的漏洞、弱点和错误设置,致使袭击者能成功获取数据。 4)袭击者技术高超、老练,符合“高端持续网络威胁”网袭组织特点。 5)我国网络防御并非坚不可摧,也难以避免高端持续网络威胁袭击,但可避免让袭击者成功获取和渗透数据。 卫生部在去年揭露本地最大的公共医疗机构新保集团遭受历来最大规模网袭,约150万名病人的个人资料被盗,还有约16万人的门诊配药记录被泄露,当中包括总理李显龙与数名部长的记录。 独立调查委员会由前首席地方法官马格纳斯担任主席。…

NUSS Post Hougang By-Election Dialogue (21 June 2012)

~ By Cheong Yaoming ~ The NUSS organised a Post Hougang By-Election Dialogue yesterday with special…