Les Vacances en France

Posted by Analyse at 10:08 AM

Saturday, July 07, 2007

My vacation counter has been reset last month. On the list are:

Congés Payés : 25 days. That’s 5 weeks of Paid Leave.

Pont Payé : 1 day. Day between a legal holiday and a weekend. We have 1 day a year and we could take it anytime we want.

Réduction Temps de Travail (RTT) : 11 days. The RTT is the equivalent of 35-hour workweek. With that regime, I get 11 more days of vacation a year.

Congé d’Ancienneté : 2 days. Days added related to the length of service in the company. What? Who says I’m old?

Report Jour de Repos : 2 days. The days I wasn’t able to take last accounting year which I have to consume till the 31st of August this year. Another way to keep unconsumed vacation days is to transfer them to the Compte Epargne Temps. It’s like a bank where you place your vacation days without worrying when you have to consume them. A quota of 18 days a year has to be respected tho.

Jour de Récupération : 3 days. These days are linked to the number of Saturdays I worked during my business travels which I have to recover upon arriving in France.

Add to that the official holidays which are:

January 1 – New Year’s Day
April N – Easter Monday
May 1 – Labour Day
May 8 – 1945 Victory
May N – Ascension Day
June N – Whit Monday (Pentecost)
July 14 – Bastille Day
August 15 – Assumption Day
November 1 – All Saint’s Day
November 11 – Armistice Day
December 25 – Christmas Day

Now, let’s do the Math. How many non-working days do I have? 55 days. Yipee!

Let’s get to the more serious topic now. Frenchguy, Louna and I need to take a 3-weeks summer vacation this August. We started to think about spending it in Italy, starting in the Vallé d’Aoste (to do mountain activities), then go down south to Pisa, Florence and Rome, then drive up to Venice and spend some time whiling away at the Italian shores, Mediterranean side. The problem was, we just started to organize everything last week, a month before our actual vacation. Since we’re running out of time, the best way to do everything quick was to ask people around us for some tips on where to park the car, which hotel to stay, what other small villages to visit, etc. But after hearing stories like August is the worst month to visit Italy because of too much tourists etc etc, we decided to think about Plan B.

Plan B is to visit something authentic or why not exotic. Egypt was long considered - cruise in the Nile River, a stop at the Hurghada/Red Sea then a day tour at Cairo. A perfect getaway. But I need a visa and we’re 3 weeks from taking our luggage off. Add to that the fact that the mercury will most probably display 40°C at daytime and Louna’s vaccines has to be reviewed. Ok, this destination - cancelled.

I again restarted to browse the net to search for Plan C while Frenchguy leaf through the pages of travel magazines. After minutes of thorough checking, I shouted ‘Know what? I won’t need a visa to go to Morocco’ to which he responded ‘Yes but you will also melt there because of too much heat.’ This destination – cancelled.

On to plan D. Plan D is … not yet finalized. We have an idea where to go and what to do, but nothing is reserved yet. And everything could still change at the last minute because of various reasons.

So expect for plan E. Hayy, ang hirap din ng maraming bakasyon!


Plain_Jane_Too said...

Holy smokes! You get all that off days? I get a total of 4 weeks only + holidays!

What do you think of Sarkozy wanting to increase work week to 40 hours?

I've wondered before if there is a true correlation between work hours and a country's GDP... I've done comparative studies on this and arguably statistics are just numbers...

chase said...

That is so nice ate! It is like her in Norway as well plus you get of course a holiday money too!

Francesca said...

grabeh, ana, you work too much, so now, pay back to your self!Relax and enjoy your vacation!

everywhere is too hot, even in Nice!

why not in the north, take a thermal vacation in Iceland or Norway. Some said its good to relax there with spa and massage!

just a suggestion.
Hope you find the best and let us know, ow!
sama kami!

analyse said...

Plain_Jane_Too, hey, 4 weeks + holidays is not that bad too..

Personally, I don't mind having 40 hours work week. I'm already working more than that without the overtime pay. I'm on a daily basis. ...

In fact, OT pay is very expensive for industries principally because of the charges the company has to pay to the government. Taxes and other charges are very high here. Take for example the retirement plan which is being paid at a considerable rate by the companies for their employees. In our company, they don't encourage people to work overtime. It's almost forbidden, in fact. In our department (engineering), they don't hire technicians anymore (they are on an hourly basis), and some competent technicians are being promoted in the same classification as engineers to avoid paying a lot of OTs, especially during business travels.

The name of the game, IMO, is delocalisation. A lot of industries has left France because of too much manpower cost. Sarkozy's first plan to allow OT without the company paying for charges was a good point. It would give possibilities to those who want to gain more.

The problem with France, as I already blogged before I guess, is they are afraid of change. (well, if it's to their advantage, it's another story of course). Even if they see their country going down the drain, they still want to keep their advantages without compromise. Talk about this change to an employee paid on an hourly basis and you will surely get another opinion. Working in a multinational company, and doing economic analysis at times, makes me see the real difference. I don't blame companies who produce in low-salary-countries, even business, they need to survive.

chase, the holiday money is important of course hehe..

Francesca, I don't know but I'm not really attracted to cold countries like that.. We might land somewhere in the south, but at the opposite side of Nice.. sayang nga e, we just missed the fiesta in Pamplona.. how about you? Where are you heading?

Leah said...

Care to go to the Carribean or on a cruise maybe? Its fun.

Good that you have so many vacation time. Use it well and enjoy to the max.

Goodluck to your Plan E??!! or F!

Francine said...

wow swerte mo naman ana. dami mong holidays ah

analyse said...

Leah, ah, that would be luxury! Hehe, I think we'll finally settle for plan E.

Francine, your hubs must have the same number of holidays except for the 'jours de récupération'. And if you start working here na, you will enjoy the same advantage.

auee said...

Sayang yung Egypt

I want to go there, too. And also South Africa.

Ayaw nyo bang mag-London? hehe

analyse said...

Auee, oo nga e, target ni Frenchguy yang destination na yan kaya lang baka di kayanin ni Louna yung weather e.. saka na pag mas malaki na sya..

re: London. Galing na kasi kami dyan nung nasa tyan ko pa si Louna..

Christianne said...

Whoa ang dami! People in Pinas who only have 15 VL days would die to have your problem :D

I only get 30 days a year... but I have about six months of maternity leave left, which I can use until Annika's in first grade :D

3 weeks to get a visa for an exotic Egyptian vacation shouldn't be a problem right? By the way, are you going to apply for French citizenship?

Analyse said...

Christianne, i didn't really check how long they release a visa, me thinks it will only take a week, like most of the other countries.. the deciding factor was actually the temperature/weather.. im afraid Louna won't appreciate it that much :(

Analyse said...

oppps, by the way. yes, im considering the question quite seriously right now.. i start to hate being limited to the schengen countries.. but i still have to ask for official translations of all my docs..

Christianne said...

Ah, yeah it might be better to go some other time of the year... Plan D and E might be better (are they camping trips?)

Good luck with the citizenship application, hope it will be a straightforward process :)

julie said...

Sarap! I would have love Morocco, home of the singing sand dunes, :)

Share na lang your adventures.Take care!

Analyse said...

we will be out for 3 weeks and yes, a week will be spent camping ;)