National Lampoon's European vacation

Under the ruling, workers who get sick on holiday are entitled to paid time off equal to the amount of time they didn’t feel well during the original holiday. The question originated in Spain, where trade unions sued for the vacation do-over allowance some years ago. The European court has now upheld the right throughout the EU, noting that the “entitlement to paid annual leave must be regarded as a particularly important principle of EU social law, a principle expressly enshrined in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights,” and thus “cannot be interpreted restrictively.”

Little danger of that. Vacation do-over rights only add to the EU minimum of 20 paid days of vacation per year—not including national holidays and EU-mandated weekends, breaks and additional time off for night-workers. …

The court’s ruling comes when official unemployment in Spain is 25%, and half of young Spaniards can’t find a job. All of these entitlements and allowances raise the cost of employment, and so reduce the job opportunities for everyone. It does no good to have the right to re-do a vacation if you can’t find a job in the first place.

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