Still have vacation days? 1 in 4 Americans set to lose their time off

Worried about losing your edge—or even your job completely—if you decided to take time off?

Well, you fit right in with more than 20 percent of Americans who forget to give themselves a break.

According a recent work-life balance survey from Priceline, one in four U.S. workers still have nine or more days of paid time off remaining this year.

And Priceline CEO Brett Keller says that while a majority of people start out with full intentions of taking those days off, most find themselves scrambling to use those days as December approaches.

"Our advice is to treat your paid time off like any other work project," Keller said. "Plan ahead, keep track of the days available, and don't let the year end with that time unused."

Salary website Glassdoor found similar statistics to Priceline’s on U.S. workers vacation time. According to its poll, most Americans say they only use about half or 54 percent of their eligible vacation time every year.

The most alarming stat Glassdoor found, however, is that nearly 10 percent of those polled said they take no paid time off at all.

The result, according to study by the U.S. Travel Association, is that Americans are forking over more than 200 million vacation days that cannot be rolled over. That equated to about $62.2 billion in lost benefits last year. What’s more, individuals who plan and use all their time off report greater levels of happiness in their overall life.

Here are three tips from the website Project: Time Off to help workers manage their vacation days.

  1. Determine how much time off you earn. Add the number of vacation days you earn into the box on the right by using the arrows or typing directly into the box. Don’t forget to make note of any office closures (the site accounts for weekends and major holidays).
  2. Coordinate calendars. Use your custom link to get your family and friends involved in the planning.
  3. Share your plans. Once you have your days determined, export your plans to your Outlook, Gmail, or other electronic calendars.