TripAdvisor survey finds South-east Asians work on holidays

TripAdvisor survey finds South-east Asians work on holidays

What do you do while on holiday? Relax? Pamper yourself? Eat and shop till kingdom come?

Perhaps some of those or all of those. But do you know that some people actually work while on vacation?

This was revealed from the results of TripAdvisor's working-on-vacation survey of 16,765 employed respondents across 14 countries, including 618 in South-East Asia. Sixty-seven per cent of respondents surveyed in South-East Asia report having worked on vacation in the past year, compared to the global average of 46 per cent.

Why People Work on Vacation

Fifty-five per cent of respondents in South-East Asia say they do not mind doing a little work during their vacation, while 36 per cent prefer to be totally disconnected, and eight per cent enjoy being connected to work while on vacation.

Across all countries surveyed, the top reason respondents cited for working on vacation is that there may be urgent situations that need attention - 75 per cent of South-East Asian respondents report feeling this way, higher than the global average of 58 per cent.

South-East Asian respondents are the most likely to report feeling guilty if they do not work on vacation (19 per cent), and also the most likely to say that their managers expect it (15 per cent).

Top Work Activities Respondents Typically Do While on Vacation

The activity that tops it all is checking emails with 90 per cent (Ed note: guilty as charged) of South-East Asian respondents admitting to it compared to the global average of 67 per cent. Next up is responding to those d**n emails with 81 per cent OF travellers from SEA copping to it while only 58 per cent of the rest of the world said so.

Some 43 per cent of SEA travellers said they even created or edited documents in comparison to the 28 per cent worldwide. Creating and editing presentations also was part and parcel of the travel process for 22 per cent of SEA respondents double that of the global average.

Finally 16 per cent of SEA travellers actually participated in conference calls (Ed note: wonder if the rest of the conference participants were also on holiday?) in comparison to nine per cent for the global average.

Email Trends and Online Connectivity

Ninety per cent of Southeast Asian respondents typically check their work emails while on vacation. Of those who check work emails on vacation, 44 per cent say it is an everyday habit and do not consider it to be "work".

Forty-one per cent check their work email once a day, while another 41 per cent admit to checking several times a day. Forty-six per cent of respondents say the rise in internet connectivity and access to mobile devices has created an expectation from employers that employees should always be available to work, thus feeling the need to check in while out of the office.

Annual Leave Allotted Versus What is Considered Fair

On average, respondents in South-East Asia are allotted 20 days of annual leave, four days less than the global average of 24 days. Only 53 per cent of South-East Asian respondents are satisfied with the number of days of annual leave allotted, compared with the global average of 68 per cent.

South-East Asian respondents would like an additional three days of annual leave, considering 23 days to be fair and reasonable.

Give Me a Break

Fifty-nine per cent of South-East Asian respondents plan on taking their full annual leave this year, but whether they eventually do so still depend on work commitments.

Fifty-six per cent of all respondents surveyed feel they were not able to take all their time-off in past years as there was too much to do at work.

Sixty-nine per cent of respondents in Southeast Asia say their vacations leave them feeling refreshed and recharged, and 29 per cent say they are better able to handle work stress after taking a vacation.

"The TripAdvisor survey shows that travellers in South-East Asia receive less annual leave than other Western countries, and when they do take time-off it is often more like a 'workation' than a vacation," said Jean Ow-Yeong, TripAdvisor spokesperson.

"In today's highly connected world, South-East Asian travellers feel the need to stay plugged in even when on vacation."

* The survey was conducted with 16,765 travellers globally, with respondents from South-East Asia (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand), Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Spain, the United States and Britain from Aug 7 to 13.

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