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Asked by Tanya on May 4, 2018

How long should I wait after starting a job to ask for vacation time?

Answered by Tom, Hiring Expert at VF Corporation, on May 4, 2018

Best option is to ask about time off policies before taking the job.  If your potential employer is not willing to share that information before you commit, you should seriously question whether or not to take the job.  Assuming you are already on the job, there really is no standard for this...you could ask at any time.  First thing I would do is check with someone in HR, to see if there is a policy that covers time off...most companies have them, but if you are with a smaller company, they may not and it could be left mostly to the discretion of your manager.  Regardless of the policy or not, you ultimately need to ask your manager.  If you have specific dates you are looking at, don't wait til the last minute, have the conversation as soon as possible and be prepared to discuss how your work would get covered when you are out.  Show your manager that you don't want to let the team down and are thinking ahead.  If you don't have specific dates in mind, seems like a casual conversation with your manager, "Hey, with summer right around the corner, I'm sure I'd like to take some time off here and there, how do we handle that here?" 

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Answered by Ashley, Hiring Expert at Cardinal Health, on May 9, 2018

I would first recommend understanding your time off policy. Do you receive vacation time or paid time off (PTO) as soon as you start? Or, is there a waiting period before you begin accruing or earning time off? If you begin earning vacation time or PTO immediately, I don't think any time is too soon to start using it. (As long as you make it through the first couple of weeks.) I would just recommend being mindful when you approach your manager to request time off. Explain what your plans are and ask if it would be appropriate for you to take PTO for X dates. If you had a vacation planned prior to accepting the position, it is common to discuss this with your manager before accepting the offer or as soon as you start. Most managers would be understanding of this and willing to work around it, especially if your company supports a healthy work-life balance.

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