Paid vacation time is mandatory in the European Union–four weeks is a minimum. That number can seem crazy to people in the United States where it takes 20 years of service to reach an average of 20 vacation days a year–and even when we have it, we don’t use it all.
But, in my experience, Europe embraces vacation–sometimes in ways that make no sense. I’ve frequently found restaurants that close for two weeks during peak tourist season–because the owners want to take their own vacation time. I’d think they would close in the offseason and make money while they could, but the vacation culture is strong.
This summer, my family is basically staying put due to a variety of reasons. We’re making a couple of short trips, but otherwise staying in our home in Switzerland (which, admittedly, is a prime vacation spot in and of itself). And it’s impossible to get anything done.
My lawyer has been on vacation for the past three weeks and will be back next week. I have some things I need her to look at, and they have to wait.
To keep reading, click here: It’s August and All of Europe is on Vacation. How Do You Run Your Global Business?