When your work or home life cause you to cry out, the answer is simple:
it’s just time fly out.
By Joshua Shier | Photography Justin Main
Honestly, it’s time to get the heck out of here! No matter how much stress you convince yourself may need to go into the planning, paying, and executing of the ever out-of-touch vacation, nothing can compare to the feeling that rushes over us when the wheels of that plane finally lift off the ground. Relaxation, escape, beautiful weather, they are all waiting for us when we land and best of all, “getting away” can now be considered doctor’s orders. This, in part with Expedia.ca’s annual “Vacation Deprivation Survey” – which talks to Canadians from coast to coast – finds that it is, in fact, exactly what we need.
The way our culture thrives on the ‘work, watch, spend’ cycle, doesn’t allow us much room for letting go from the world around us. Everyone knows that giving yourself time, whether through meditation, exercise, socializing, and of course, exploring and traveling, is good for you – but have we ever really had the facts to back it up? Well, not until now. The shocking results of Expedia’s survey show that statistically as a nation we are taking less and less time off each year, mainly due to the majority of us consequently taking on more and more work. Over half of Canadians reported they took less actual days off this year than they did in 2013, and on top of it, feel like we just don’t get enough vacation time in the first place. On average, they claimed to need at least 8 more days to be satisfied with their yearly allotment, for a total average annual allotment of 24 days.
Although this may seem like a lot on paper, think about your life and the last year. Do you truly feel like you “got away from it all”? Maybe not enough, or even a bit, or maybe you just didn’t go anywhere? Well, it’s official. “Vacation Deprivation” is actually a thing. Even despite the known benefits of taking time off work, the survey found that what this is clearly defined as is not having enough vacation time or not using some or all, of one’s vacation allotment.
Speaking to Sean Shannon, the Managing Director of Expedia Canada, it was clear where the company stands on the issue (I mean, if it wasn’t obvious before). “Vacation deprivation is clearly on the rise,” said Sean. “Roughly half of Canadians surveyed…report feeling somewhat, or very, vacation deprived, up from 40% last year. At Expdia.ca, we understand the positive benefits of travel and the importance of getting away from the day-to-day routine. It’s an opportunity to relax, recharge, and rejuvenate.”
Building on that glorious statement, vacations truly are a medicine for the body, mind, and soul. Options are endless when it comes to the create-your-own-adventure aspect of a custom itinerary – it’s truly a beautiful thing in itself. But even if you aren’t the type to put a lot of work into your escape from reality, being provided with 5-star resort after 5-star resort to chose from, it’s not that difficult to find what you’re after. If it’s fine dining and guzzling champagne in a cabana in Cozumel, or rock climbing and cave diving in Vietnam, it’s pretty much possible to make it happen in less than 24-hours (time zones permitting, of course).
It’s safe to say we all understand the love affair with the vacay’, and loathe the dreaded return back home sometimes, but 93% of people said they still felt relaxed and rejuvenated for long periods of time when they arrived home from a trip, and 87% say they really feel closer to their partners, or their family afterwards. The Expedia.ca survey went as far to even determine that 78% of us even feel more focused, and able to appreciate our jobs more after going on a much deserved vacation.
Whether it’s the endless vitamin D, free yoga, massages, the best of World cuisine, or just the endless mojitos and tequila shots, our time on vacation is sacred to us. We cherish those memories for years to come. Through indulging in our naughty side and letting loose, getting pampered, clearing our minds, we find our true self. Even better is being lucky enough to share that with others – and maybe making tradition out of it with a loved one. It’s always the way to spark the fire in any relationship – snowbird, or not.
And what about those of us who are lucky enough to be off in a far-away land, laying on the beach, but just can’t unplug and stop checking “work emails” for the life of them? Or the ones who seem to post-pone vacation plans incessantly because of certain work obligations or downright paranoia (37% of us according to the national survey)?
Why it only brings us right back to the wretched ‘work, watch, spend’ cycle. Over-time equals over-load, and it’s starting to bring us down! We work all day to come home and feel too tired to really enjoy ourselves, watch TV, dream of and see what we can’t have, and go to sleep only to wake up and do it all over again. Medical professionals out there are beginning to agree, and we’ve known it for a long time. It’s not good for our minds and it’s not good for our bodies either.
Taking the opportunity to book yourself a flight online, even go somewhere for just two or three days can allow yourself the solitude, and the relaxing experience needed in order to come back refreshed and rested, ready to tackle your career with a new found attitude. Better performance leads to better salary, which leads to…you guessed it: better vacations! The theory isn’t new, and it’s been written about many times, but now, thanks to Expedia, the national vacation deprivation survey really proves the point. It’s time for us to take back the vacation, and promise to ourselves more time for ‘me’ and more time to enjoy life. Taking any opportunity to get inspired, get outside the box, or just plain get out of here. In today’s connected, overworked, overrated, over-tweeted, over-facebooked, crazy world, getting lost can sometimes seem completely impossible, but with a few easy clicks on that screen, instead of reading a nasty work email, or the lurking photos of your ex-BFF in Cuba, you could actually be booking yourself a nice little getaway. And if you really want to truly get the most of out of your home-away-from-home, just turn the damn screens off. Unplug from the world and opt-out of the instagram inundating – because really, we all know what a pina colada looks like anyway. Lose yourself to the magic of it all, or as the French say la magie de tout cela! Why not, oui?