Long have I heard complaints about a lack of vacation time when in England. "Look at the rest of Europe" they say, "They get many more public holidays and vacation days". It's a fact that they do, Italy averages 42 days off a year, but 21 days (in my experience 21 days, the stats say 28 days) of standard vacation time is nothing to sniff at. Not when you consider the poor yanks who not only average between 9 and 14 days off when starting a job but there is also no federal regulations requiring employers to provide vacation days. What can you accomplish in 9 days?? You are probably expected to spend some of those days with your family, other days running important errands you couldn't do while at work... it's no wonder that on average people take 8-10 days sick leave a year. I guess it probably explains why a lot of American's don't own a passport too, they just don't have the time to spend their vacation flying across the globe. So a word to all you moaning Brits (I know you're out there), there is always someone more worse off than you.