European take a lot more vacation days than Americans

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deaf tuner

Ad Honoris
Oct 2013
14,297
Europix
#51
As far as vacation are concerned, I have 185 hours of holiday and an extra holiday of 37 hours, plus because of the collective agreement I have, 32 hours for a day of, because I am a senior worker.

It will be based on an average working week is 37 hours.

Speaking of senior worker, I have informed my boss, that if I am healthy (knock on wood) then I continue to work until I reach the age of 70.

She suddenly looked as though she needed a pension.
Interesting.

In Belgium vacation is counted in working days 20 per annum. But it depends a bit on sectors and on the time worked (full time/part time, aso)
 

deaf tuner

Ad Honoris
Oct 2013
14,297
Europix
#52
Probably US students should come to Italy to graduate: they will save money and they will find a job in US!!!!!
Primo: US isn't part of EU, so American students will have to pay a higher tuition fee than the normal.

Secundo: there's plenty of jobs in Italy, so American students might very well find a job in Italy. With the bonus of having 4 weeks of paid vacation that can spend with la bellissima Giovanna on a boat, singing "Sul mare lucida ... " ;)
 
Likes: Runa
Nov 2018
277
Denmark
#53
A third of your income is a good deal to pay. All the more that it would be imperative for all to contribute, in my opinion.
It's a lot of money, but on the other hand, my daughter has taken a bachelor's and master's degree at the university, and I haven't paid a penny.

Plus she received a living expenses subsidy.Not much, she had to do extra work next to the studies, but it was a helping hand.

And if you, for example, have diabetes then you can get a large subsidy for medicine and supplementation for extra expenses for special diets.
 
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Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
5,463
Portugal
#54
Let's be honest, isn't this why many European nations need bailouts? People work government jobs that pay inflated rates and benefits, like months of vacation. Is a bailout from one EU nation to another deserved if one has the attitude that an 8 hour day is too much work?
Nope.

Don’t get me wrong, I agree with you that today some “kids” think that they are too good to do some work, especially “hand” word, and that could pick a bike/bus instead of going with their moto or car to the job/school to save some cash. But that is a problem all over the world that, following this path, some day will arrive to more and more countries in Latin America, Asia and Africa.

But in that question you were wrong. It is much more complex that that and I already wrote about that several times here. I can write again… but not now… I will begin a class in some minutes.
Pardon me when in my post #15 I didn’t gave you a full answer to your post #14, or better a full explanation for the “nope”. I tough I had time to write it all. But at least I had to make it clear that the case was all but “that” clear as you implied or said.

First at all let me state that the “European bailouts” don’t have nothing to do with work ethics (see who works more hours: Working time - Wikipedia, just by curiosity it seems that in the mentioned years, 2014, 2015, 2016, comparing our two countries, it seems Portugal is above the USA in the ranking. And I think that just means that there are too many idiots in Portugal). And I doubt that work ethics have their origins in the bible, as you state in your post #14. I really can’t prove it, but I have the idea behind work ethics are as old as the Man. Can’t we also see some hints in the Code of Hammurabi? Or in other traditional laws from different geographical sources?

Back to the EU and the “bailouts”: In one thing I guess we can both agree, it was bad management case.

The USA are states united under a constitution and some federal laws… they are “United” “States” basically since their beginning. The EU is a project in construction. It is or at least it was a project of a United States of Europe. It was even discussed if it was a Federation project or a Confederation project. Anyway it is a WIP, to use a net acronym, a “Work In Progress”.

That WIP means that there is no “constitution”, and there are still missing some (many) common laws, there is no “Banking Union”, no “Tax Union”, no common coin (no the Euro is not common to all) and the individual countries still have much more independency to make their counterpart states in the USA. And that the European Commission is far from having the powers of the USA government, and the European Parliament is far from having the powers of any of the two USA chambers (Senate and Congress).

So we have individual states (countries) that with a common goal wanted to be united (even if some were apparently misinformed) and in that path some marched to a common coin.

Historically among those countries we had countries that had a superavit (surplus) in the balance trade and those who had a deficit.

Traditionally those deficit issues are resolved in economy with two tools, one with trade tariffs, other with devaluating the coin.

In the EU, for the countries with the Euro, none of this tools existed. They couldn’t impose tariffs and they couldn’t devaluate their coin… it was the same as the countries with the superavit (mainly but not exclusively Germany).

For the countries with the surplus the deficit of the others wasn’t really a problem. Most of the surplus was caused also due to a contribution of those countries due to the “new” internal market without tariffs and common circulation of the products. And there was no problem at all… the German banking system could finance those deficits and have some more gains in the process.

And so we, in the EU, fall in what was basically what in the USA call a “Ponzi scheme”. At that was ok… as long as the banks of the countries with a surplus would finance it. And this was something like the “original sin” in the Bible. After this we only find bad management and miss conduct in all the parts. Beginning with the EU that didn’t saw or didn’t want to saw this. Because after this it was inevitable that situations like in Greece, Portugal, Spain, Italy and France would happened. The final blow was the subprime crisis in the USA. That was the final flame that ignited the all issue beginning the international crisis in the Banking system that was financing this “Ponzi scheme”. And suddenly all the people noticed that this was unsustainable that there were countries living above “their possibilities”! It seems one of those cases that we need to say “dah!” (and I almost never use this expression). The EU didn’t had a mechanism for this.

I am not from the same political area as the former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, as a matter of fact I am quite distant. I think he was an awful minister and politician but I find him an excellent teacher and academic speaker. He gave a class in a USA university (one of the top ones, can’t recall if it was Yale, MIT or something… sorry!) that I tried to find without success on YouTube where he explains this process quite well to the USA students.

By the way, let me state that this problem was not resolved, was just washed to under the table.

Anyway I found this now that can give you an idea of what I explained, maybe in better words and even other perspectives in some four minutes:

Or even here to more USA right wing public (it is a series, but take a look to the first minutes):

But the class that I wanted to find is really a good (better and longer) explanation. Anyway, any Economist can give similar explanation if wants to follow that path.
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
5,463
Portugal
#55
Why resist the effort to not work when social benefits within a highly collective society will take care of you? What's the incentive? As an analogy, although on a different level, did this concept work in communist nations like the USSR? We have plenty even in the U.S., with less generous benefits, who don't mind avoiding work. 4 hours a day? How about 0 hours a day for many. Months of paid vacation/holidays for some? How about everyday is a vacation day, holiday for others. Then they demand to live like you do, saying it is the "fair" thing to do. What's fair to me is that everybody pull their weight unless they have a very good reason to not do so. The only negative to my scenario s that somebody may try to rob or con you. I am all for taking care of children. But once you become an adult, you need to try to take care of yourself or live a very spartan lifestyle and not complain or be envious.
Let us be clear that the “European” Social Democratic/Social Christian system in its concept didn’t had direct similarities with the Soviet Union. It was a mixed system of mixed economy that in a lesser degree also exists in the USA. Basically it recognized both dangers and benefits from Capitalism and Socialism. There were strategic sectors that should be only state owned (justice, external security were probably the best examples that still stay as core), sectors that the economy was mixed (education, health care), and others that were private (most of the economy).

As it was already explained here the tax payers contribute as a whole to the whole. People that pay less will still receive less, in moments of crisis/unemployment/retirement, some only the basic to “survive” that in many cases serves as a pillow to avoid them to fall to the outside of the legal society. That we have the education that can be free for all while is mandatory. Education can serve as a social lift, so the people can have social expectations to raise their social status. And then there is the health care when people have the right to be treated humanly as human beings, in principle equally regardless of their economic status. If they want better they can chose other system.

For some individuals it is an non just system? Maybe. But it has been working to avoid that some people (call them losers, less fortunate or with less work ethics… who really “cares” what we call them, the words can range from an euphemism to a insult) fall into the margins of society. If that is the price to pay, there are people willing to pay it. Basically it is a political and human decision that it was made in many European countries that more individualist societies like the USA didn’t made. It is a sort of compromise between individualism and collectivism, recognizing that the human beings have the right to their individuality but that they need to coexist in the same society.
 
Likes: Runa
Nov 2018
277
Denmark
#56
According to an article I just found, the average tax rate for a middle income American is about 14%.
With that tax rate, I understand that the Americans are opposed to paying tax for health care and education.

We have a saying in Denmark that says, money do best in the citizens' pockets.

If you want to get a better treatment in the health care system in Denmark or you want your child to go to a private school. Then you have to pay yourself, and above all, you have already paid a fortune in tax.

No system is perfect.
 
Likes: Tulius

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
5,463
Portugal
#57
With that tax rate, I understand that the Americans are opposed to paying tax for health care and education.

We have a saying in Denmark that says, money do best in the citizens' pockets.

If you want to get a better treatment in the health care system in Denmark or you want your child to go to a private school. Then you have to pay yourself, and above all, you have already paid a fortune in tax.

No system is perfect.
In Portugal is around 35% if the memory serves me right. More if we count social security. Naturally if we want really good education or health care services we go to the private. But the basics are assured by the public system.

Anyway, it is back to the bailouts, it is curious to say that some EU countries have too much debt to GDP (and they have), but when we see the lists Japan is on the top, Singapore is on 8th and the USA on 10th.

Portugal is on 6th, but besides some issues that I already addressed we have an ex-prime minister (José Sócrates) persecuted and on trial due to some billions business that directly affected both the debt and the GDP. Shame on us.
 

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,048
US
#58
In regard to the OP then, Europeans take more vacation or holidays because they are entitled to them. I would say in the U.S. public sector 4 weeks of vacation is the norm, while in the private sector it may be only 2 weeks. My brother works in the trades. If he doesn't take vacation days, he gets paid instead. He seldom takes vacation days, opting for the money.
 
Nov 2018
277
Denmark
#59
In regard to the OP then, Europeans take more vacation or holidays because they are entitled to them. I would say in the U.S. public sector 4 weeks of vacation is the norm, while in the private sector it may be only 2 weeks. My brother works in the trades. If he doesn't take vacation days, he gets paid instead. He seldom takes vacation days, opting for the money.
It's not just that we have the right to vacation.

There are also health benefits to holiday.

The body's level of stress hormones is lowered, blood pressure drops, the brain gets a break and will be fresh and ready for new input and the mental surplus and spirit increase and you get better at resisting everyday pressure.

In addition, the social aspect must be taken into account. If you have planned your holiday sensibly, you can be with your children and spouse in a completely different and more relaxed way than in everyday life.

But of course if you have planned 14 days in a cottage together with your spouse and his family, there is the risk of being separated afterwards.

There may also be benefits to this.
 

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,048
US
#60
It's not just that we have the right to vacation.

There are also health benefits to holiday.

The body's level of stress hormones is lowered, blood pressure drops, the brain gets a break and will be fresh and ready for new input and the mental surplus and spirit increase and you get better at resisting everyday pressure.

In addition, the social aspect must be taken into account. If you have planned your holiday sensibly, you can be with your children and spouse in a completely different and more relaxed way than in everyday life.

But of course if you have planned 14 days in a cottage together with your spouse and his family, there is the risk of being separated afterwards.

There may also be benefits to this.
I see your point. For most Americans who are over 50 years of age, we were raised with the idea that you work hard and play hard, but you work before play. In the area of work, it was expected that you go often to earn money and benefits for your family. As for things being better by getting more days off, I would generally say yes, although it depends on what you are doing on those days off. Here in the U.S. we have a serious opioid problem, mainly among those who are millennials. The suicide rate for young adults is also at a high. I have heard people say the day they retire they will likely die. Who knows. This may just be a mindset to get one through the work week. Millennials have a different perspective for the most part, one of leisure and relaxation for their well being. The problem for them is, unlike most places in Europe, the U.S. does not tax at a high rate to provide these options through their job or the government. So, to live that more relaxing lifestyle those who wish to do so here may have to learn to accept less. From my experience working a job with young adults, my own family and my friend's and co-workers families, many young adults today want the best of both worlds, at the expense of those who are working. They demands things based upon the concept of "rights." In my opinion, one does not have a right to take my earnings for them to sit at home or play. In my experience here in the U.S., it is those who don't earn much that clamor for high tax rates. I am a middle class person, not rich. So, there is basically two different mindsets at work here. The U.S. may be moving more toward that of western Europe.
 
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