While most people can't wait to knock off from work and head away on holiday, many Kiwis are hanging on to annual leave days - stockpiling them for future trips, a survey has found.

Expedia's vacation deprivation report showed New Zealanders, on average, left a total of four annual leave days unused in 2013. This was just below the global average of five.

The report found some Kiwis didn't claim their full allotment of annual leave because holidays were either too expensive or too hard to organise.

More than half of New Zealanders - 52 per cent - admitted feeling holiday deprived.


Expedia travel expert Kelly Cull said it made sense geographically for Kiwis to stockpile their annual leave.

"If they're going to Europe or the United States they can spend longer when visiting those destinations."

The report also found that when we finally did go on holiday, most of us had trouble "unplugging" from work - with almost three-quarters continuing to check work email and voicemail while away.

"They're saying they're holiday deprived, but they're not taking their holiday when they have the opportunity," she said. "It's important we take that time to recharge and relax."

By the numbers
The survey polled 8535 employed adults across 24 countries.

The French, who used their full allotment of 30 leave days last year, were the leading holiday-takers.

Japan, for the fifth consecutive year, was the most vacation-deprived nation, with adults taking an average of only seven days' annual leave out of a possible 18.

Australians had similar holiday habits to New Zealanders, with employed adults, on average, leaving five annual leave days unclaimed last year.