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5 Myths About Vacation Time in Canada

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Who doesn’t absolutely love taking some vacation time? There’s nothing that can beat the feeling of putting ‘out of the office’ email notification and leaving office drama behind. At least for a week or two.

Despite what your boss might say, taking a vacation is good for you. It boosts your morale, gives you a better perspective on things, and makes you think out of the box. The number of paid vacation days is different for every country and that’s how the French have up to 28 paid vacation days per year, while the Chinese have as little as six paid vacation days a year.

But, what about Canada?

Statistics show that Canada is at the bottom of the ladder when it comes to the number of paid vacation days. To its residents, Canada grants as much as 10 paid vacation days a year. And when you count in the holidays we come to a total number of 19 paid vacation days per year. 

But that’s not all.

Taking some vacation time can become a real problem if you’re employed in Canada. Not only because “provincial law governs annual paid leave unless the employee falls under federal jurisdiction, but because its “use it or lose it” policy creates confusion both with employer and employee. That’s why we decided to break as many as five myths about vacations in Canada and help you out in making the most out of your vacations.

Before changing the company, use your vacation.

Accepting a new position in a company without using the vacation days in a current one may become a problem. The reason for that hides in the fact that in Canada, vacation pay can be earned only after the completion of the first year of employment.

Don’t risk heading for burnout for the sake of a better-paying job. Taking a vacation is good for you because it enables you to get some time off from work and stay productive throughout the year. That’s why you should carefully consider every offered possibility and measure twice before you come to the final decision.

You won’t lose your vacation days if you resign.

You don’t have the right to use vacations before the first year of employment ends, however, you are supposed to be compensated for the earned vacation pay you didn’t get to use. In case you resign or get fired, money for unused, but earned vacation days must be paid out by the seventh day of the termination of employment.

You can get your vacation pay in several ways.

Companies have a variety of options when it comes to paying vacation pay to their employees. Some of them like to add the applicable percentage of earnings to the monthly salary the employee gets. Other companies like to pay the whole amount when an employee goes on vacation. Either way is ok, you just need to find a way that benefits all and makes you run your business in the most efficient and productive way.

Use it or lose it a myth is the source of all evil.

Canada runs on a “use it or lose it” policy when it comes to paid vacation days, and believe it or not, it’s the source of misconceptions and confusion both among employers and employees.

Basically, the “use it or lose it” policy means your employer can pay you for unused vacation days, however, an employer cannot tell you your vacation days are lost simply because you didn’t get the chance to use them. The bottom line, you’re always entitled to minimum vacation days.

You can choose when you’re going on holiday. Guess what, You can’t.

If you’re living and working in Canada, then you’re certainly familiar with the fact employer can choose when you’re going to take your vacation. The employer has the right to evenly schedule employees’ vacation days that suit business needs the best.

Even though this might sound unnerving, good planning and organization are the keys to business success. If your company struggles with keeping track of every employee’s vacation days, we suggest you start using vacation tracking software.

Vacation Tracker is one of them. Simple and easy to use, the Vacation Tracker can be added to your Slack account in seconds. Say goodbye to tiring vacation requests and scheduling and say hello to improved employee satisfaction. Requesting vacation time in Canada (and everywhere else) has never been easier.

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Ana Mladenovic
Ana Mladenovic

A cat enthusiast and a cupcake maniac, Ana is a freelance Content Writer passionate about HR, productivity, and team management topics. When she’s not at her keyboard, you can find Ana in the kitchen, trying to make delicious cookies.

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