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Making the Most of your PTO Package in 2023

A new year means many things: new calendars, new goals, new inspiration, a clean slate to make any and all changes you’d like in your life.

But it also means a new supply of days off! If paid time off is part of your compensation at work, make this the year you make the most of all the time off you have at your disposal. After all, like your paycheck, you’ve earned these days and hours! Here are a few tips for making the most of your PTO this year:

Use free days to build longer weekends.

If you get federal holidays off, try to take an extra day or two on either side of the holiday (usually a Monday off) to extend your weekend. It’s incredible how good a four-day weekend can feel, or even five, and it’ll cost you one less day than if you took a full week’s vacation.

Try to take time around holidays.

Some companies will close for religious observations, like Good Friday and/or Easter Monday. If your company does that, and you take off the week after Easter, you’re looking at taking four days but getting ten off (including the weekends). The same goes for Thanksgiving– if you take off the three days before, and you get Thursday and Friday off for the holiday, you get more than a week off at a lower price.

Speaking of November,

If you can swing it, start with the Veterans Day holiday, then take the following week off, plus the three days before Thanksgiving. You’re looking at taking most of the month of November off for just eight days. That does mean you’d be working most of the year without extra breaks, but if that works for you and your family, it could result in a great trip (during the off-season, no less, which means any traveling could come at a reduced price).

Don’t rule out half-days.

If you have appointments to make, for yourself or someone you care for, don’t burn a full day off for it. Instead, try to make appointments first thing in the morning or in the afternoon and just use a half day. A doctor’s appointment at 12:30 p.m. on a Friday might not sound like fun, but having that afternoon off is a treat.

However you do it, be sure to use it.

If your company has a “use it or lose it” approach to PTO, the best way to get the most out of it is to actually use it. Your boss takes time off they have coming to them, right? Why shouldn’t you? You’ve earned this time and it’s owed to you as part of the compensation and benefits package you agreed to when taking the job. Letting days go to waste is like burning money. Don’t do that!

For so long, we’ve been conditioned to think that working is the only way, that taking time off puts others at a disadvantage and we shouldn’t do it. That letting PTO build up and fade away was somehow honorable. We know more now about burnout and the importance of breaks for your mental and physical health. So grab a calendar, start daydreaming about what you’d like to do with your time off, and use it all up!

Ready to make a change? Check out the jobs available through Sterling Personnel.

If you’re not getting PTO as part of your compensation, or you’d like to find a job that gives you more, it might be time to call Sterling Personnel. We work with great companies looking to hire hardworking people just like you and we can tell you about their PTO packages right up front. Give Sterling Personnel a call today and start thinking about how you’ll use your time!