PETALING JAYA: A survey by online travel agency Expedia Japan has put Malaysian workers at ninth place out of 19 countries and regions in terms of taking paid holidays or vacations.
It said Malaysian employees on average take 12 out of 16 paid off-days they are entitled to.
The survey also shed light on the workaholic nature of Japanese employees who took the fewest paid off-days – 10 out of 20 allocated to them.
With a new law taking effect in April next year, though, Japanese workers will be required to take at least five days of leave per year if they have 10 or more days of paid vacation due to them.
Keizo Ishii, head of Expedia Japan, told the Nikkei Asian Review that the law might help Japanese workers take more paid holidays.
“But many may feel awkward taking more days off since the government decided to create a 10-day Golden Week holiday in late April and early May, to mark the installation of the new emperor.
“We have to change the mentality of feeling guilty for taking days off,” Ishii said.
The online survey, which covered both men and women aged 18 and above, had over 11,000 valid responses.
When asked why they took fewer days off, most of the Japanese respondents cited understaffing at their companies.
An Expedia representative told the Nikkei Asian Review that the Japanese had a strong sense of responsibility towards their work. Another fact that the survey unearthed was the deep-rooted idea among at least 58% of Japanese respondents who “felt guilty about taking paid leave”.
The survey also found that workers aged 18 to 49 said they need more vacations.