by Thomas Wailgum

What Kind of a Vacation Is This?

Jul 24, 20062 mins

It’s summer, and that means vacations, beaches, theme parks, BBQs and hanging out with family and friends. And your BlackBerry. And cell phone. And possibly your laptop for work-related emergencies. Sound familiar?

You’re not alone if “getting away from it all” really means “getting away from it all … and staying as close to that cell phone tower or Ethernet connection as possible without my family seeing me check my e-mail.” According to results from’s “Vacation 2006” survey, one in four workers planned on working while on vacation this summer (which, while still bad, is an improvement from last year’s 33 percent mark).

Another interesting finding that may only interest me was that some workers will lie about a “technology impediment” to get more downtime. According to the survey, 11 percent of workers blamed bad wireless connections and other technology issues to avoid work while away from the office. Interestingly, men were more apt to fib about tracking down Internet access or cell phone signals in an attempt to stymie contact from their employers (13 percent), compared with 10 percent of women. Along those gender lines, the survey also shows men are more likely than women to work while on vacation: Thirty-three percent of men expect to work on projects or check in with the office while away from corporate HQ, compared to 25 percent of women.

Other interesting findings included: Sixteen percent of workers reported feeling guilty about missing work while on vacation, and seven percent actually fear that time off could lead to unemployment. (That’s not good.) To compound that, more than half of workers say they work under a great deal of stress, and 77 percent say they feel burned out on the job.

So what’s your plan for the remainder of the summer — how will you get away from it all? Will you lie to your boss, or your spouse and family? We just got back from a vacation in which I left all devices at home. I was proud of myself. And so was my family. How about you?