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November 29, 2021

Would you prefer a higher salary or more paid vacation?

For the past few years, there has been a new economic reality – that of the dreaded salary freeze, which has swept much of the nation, in sectors both public and private.

A salary freeze, of course, is better than no job at all, but many companies in Canada, stretched by thin budgets, have had to get creative in their compensation outlines.

So what many have done, instead of being able to offer higher salaries, is resort to keep wages the same, but award more paid time off instead.

For Canadians, at least according to a new poll, that’s not such a bad compromise.

Consultancy firm Mercer recently surveyed workers from a few key nations across the globe, asking what they’d prefer in their job: more money or more time off.

*Bing: When’s the best time to buy airfare?

The labour force from countries like the U.S., U.K., France, China and Brazil all said they valued more money over more paid vacation.

But then there is Canada.

According to Mercer’s report, Canadians were the only group to prefer paid vacation to a bump in salary; 20 per cent said an extra week’s paid vacation was the job perk they’d most like to receive from their employer, compared to 18 per cent that said an extra $500 salary was what they’d most prefer.

Of course, $500, especially after tax, isn’t much when spread across the calendar, so perhaps Mercer’s idea of a salary bump doesn’t stack up against a week of paid vacation.

But perhaps the principle stands for Canadians, nonetheless. Maybe Canadians, stressed and now beginning to freeze their feet off this time of year, value time to jet off somewhere warm more than anyone else in the world.

Which would you prefer from your work: extra cash, or more time off?

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...