How to get 10 days off work by using just 4 vacation days

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All year long,‘s Michael Timmermann is sharing quick and easy ways to save money as part of our Michael Saves series. Check in every Monday as he puts new and familiar savings strategies to the test. Sign up for our newsletter to have these stories delivered to your inbox!

If you have big travel plans but only a couple weeks of paid vacation every year, you really have to get creative when you’re planning a getaway.

Otherwise, your days off could easily disappear before the year is up! Here’s how to get around that…

Read more: These 35 hotel chains offer free breakfast

How to maximize your limited vacation time

One of the best strategies to maximize your limited vacation time is to use both weekends on a week-long trip and to schedule your time off around the holidays.

In 2017, there may be a way for you to take off from work for 10 days in a row and only use four vacation days.

Here’s how:

  • Christmas, a federal holiday, falls on a Monday
  • New Year’s Day (2018), a federal holiday, is also on a Monday
  • In addition to those two holidays, Monday through Friday workers can stretch their vacation time out by using four weekend days: December 23-24 and December 30-31
  • Then all that’s left is your four vacation days, December 26 to December 29

10 days off with 4 vacation days

For this scenario to work, you’ll have to discipline yourself to make sure that you have four days to use in December, which is why we wanted to share this tip a few months in advance.

Once you get your time off approved, remember Clark’s top tips to save money on travel: 

FLIGHT: Start at Kayak Explore to find the cheapest fares nationwide, then search for the specific flights available on Google Flights once you’ve identified a destination.


Read more: Clark’s secret to finding the cheapest flights possible

HOTEL: Clark finds most of his hotels through Priceline or Hotwire. When booking a mystery hotel, he selects four-star properties that are recommended by at least 80% of guests.

Read more: Clark’s hotel booking guide

RENTAL CAR: is a free service that will shop for the best car rental rates even after you book and automatically re-book at the lowest rate. 

Read more: Use Clark’s secret weapon to avoid surprise car rental fees

Do you have any other strategies to stretch your limited vacation time? Team Clark wants to hear from you. Share your secrets with us on Facebook and Twitter.

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