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The Almighty Buck

Journal tyme's Journal: How much is a day of vacation worth?

So I just changed jobs, and I allowed myself to be bargained down from my target salary (a $10,000.00 savings!), which bummed me out for a few weeks. Now, I won't say that they bargained me down without giving me something in return: the commute is shorter, the retirement plan match is much better, there are more vacation days and the job is more interesting. I was able to assign monetary values to most of the new job's advantages, but I had some trouble with how to value a vacation day.

I was pretty sure that a vacation day was worth more than a work day (which would you rather have one of?) but I wasn't sure how much more a vacation day was worth: is a vacation day worth two work days, three, more? After thinking about it for a while I came up with the following valuation: A vacation day is woth however many days you must work to earn one day of vacation. Given this simple formula a vacation day is worth about 20 work days! (if you work in the U.S. and only get 10-20 vacation days per year) Every day of vacation is worth an entire month's salary: that is pretty astonishing!

Anyhow, after adding in the savings on gas (and adjusting for tax-rate), better retirement plan match and the value of the extra vacation days, I'm only down about $2,000.00, which is less than what I spend on lunches (e.g. not enough to worry about).

Which just goes to show that accounting can be your friend.

An egghead is one who stands firmly on both feet, in mid-air, on both sides of an issue. -- Homer Ferguson