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New Campaign by The Points Guy and Healthline Encourages Using Vacation Days for Health Benefits

Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Points Guy, a trusted media platform dedicated to maximizing travel experiences while minimizing expenses, has partnered with Healthline, a leader in health and wellness information, to launch the Take a Break Campaign. This initiative encourages people to pledge to use their vacation days this summer for their wellbeing.

According to the U.S. Travel Association, over 768 million vacation days went unused in 2018, and this trend has not improved. In 2023, a Pew Research survey found that only 48% of Americans used all of their vacation days. As one of the countries with the lowest rates of paid time off utilization, the U.S. is missing out on the numerous benefits that taking time off provides.

A study by the American Psychological Association concluded that time off helps reduce stress by removing people from environments associated with anxiety. Even anticipating a vacation can boost mood in the long term.

The benefits of taking a vacation extend beyond mental health. A study published in Psychology and Health found that people who took vacation time more often were less likely to develop metabolic syndrome, such as stroke or heart disease.

Taking time off doesn’t have to mean an expensive trip to a faraway destination. Brian Kelly, The Points Guy, shares budget-friendly recommendations for much-needed time off, while Healthline’s Chief Health Officer, Dr. Jenny Yu, offers tips to make the most of that time away from work.

“We know that taking a vacation can be good for your health – it helps you destress, build memories with loved ones, and enjoy relaxing activities,” said Brian Kelly, founder of The Points Guy. “You don’t need to spend a lot to reap the rewards. Some of my most relaxing trips have been a car ride away. As people cut back on spending, I’m excited to show travelers how to make a vacation a reality this summer.”

Brian Kelly’s tips for a stress-free and budget-friendly summer getaway include:

  1. Choose the Right Flight: Avoid unnecessary stress from flight delays and high prices. Opt for early morning flights to minimize delays. Flying mid-week (Tuesday or Wednesday) can avoid the rush of business and leisure travelers.
  2. Maximize Points and Miles: For last-minute trips, booking with points and miles can offer better rates. For international travel, consider transferring credit card points to a foreign frequent flyer program like Air France.
  3. Prepare for Chaos: Anticipate travel hurdles like missing luggage, traffic, and crowds. Use AirTags for bags, book travel with a credit card that includes insurance, and use airline and hotel apps for updates.
  4. Consider Driving Destinations: If airfare is too expensive, consider day trips within driving distance. The benefits of taking time off remain the same, regardless of distance.
  5. Explore Destination Dupes: Instead of popular tourist spots, look for lesser-known locations with similar experiences but fewer crowds and lower costs.

“Using vacation time is not just about relaxation; it’s also about prioritizing mental and physical wellbeing,” said Dr. Jenny Yu. “Taking time off allows you to disconnect from daily stress, refuel, and recharge.”

Dr. Jenny Yu’s tips for maximizing wellness benefits during time off include:

  1. Find Joy in Planning: Enjoy the planning process, as it can reduce stress. Create a Pinterest board for inspiration, have planning sessions with fellow travelers, and take your time.
  2. Schedule Free Time: Allow for unscheduled time during your vacation to rest and explore hidden gems.
  3. Maintain Parts of Your Routine: Incorporate self-care routines like meditation, journaling, or stretching to stay relaxed during your trip.
  4. Unplug and Reconnect: Limit screen time and focus on connecting with yourself and your companions.
  5. Ease Back into Real Life: Plan your return to give yourself time to decompress before resuming daily routines.

To encourage followers to take time off, The Points Guy and Healthline are asking fans to share how they plan to “take a break” this summer on social media. Followers who tag @healthline, @thepointsguy, and @secretsmoxche and a friend they would take on vacation in a dedicated post will be entered to win a luxury stay at Secrets Moxché Playa del Carmen, an adults-only resort. The contest runs from June 25th to July 9th, with one winner notified on July 12th.

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