I'm planning to leave my current company, in the next 2 months, but I still have a few days of vacation left, I want to give my 2 week notice and then have those days to go out on a trip.

Does it make me look unprofessional, to do something like that?

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    Make sure the vacation days are part of your compensation package and not a benefit! Compensation is yours to use as you'd like or get paid for unused time. A benefit is only good while you are at the company. I made the mistake once of announcing my 2 weeks notice and trying to take my last week as vacation. I was informed that since it was a benefit, I forfeited my accrued vacation when I announced my 2 weeks! – Steve Mangiameli Sep 22 '16 at 15:05
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    @SteveMangiameli that is completely dependant on the laws of the state in which you are employed, which varies. – Chris E Sep 22 '16 at 15:22
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    @ChristopherEstep, agreed - what are your laws and how is your PTO/Vacation structured? Guessing most people don't know their state's laws regarding PTO. Regardless, it needs to be a consideration. The OP may need to just take the vacation and then announce 2 weeks upon return. – Steve Mangiameli Sep 22 '16 at 15:25
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    Just note that if you take vacation while going on 2 weeks notice will mean you won't get your vacation buy out. They'll hand you a check once you complete your notice and you did not take any vacations between. Make sure you ask about this but if not, then take the vacation. – Dan Sep 22 '16 at 15:54
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    I guess it depends on your position. We just had someone do that where I work. Said she was giving 2 weeks notice, but the last week she wanted to take vacation. Neither the company nor other employees here looked at that in a positive light. IMO, it was a pretty shitty thing to do, but she was also the only person at our small company who performed certain functions. – Chris Sep 22 '16 at 19:22

The purpose of giving 2 weeks notice is to allow time in the office for you to transition your work to other people. If you gave two weeks notice and then spent those two weeks on vacation, I would view that as unprofessional and essentially the same as giving no notice.

The more professional thing to do would be to schedule your vacation, then give 3 or 4 weeks notice, with the stipulation that you would be on vacation for the final week or two. As Steve Mangiameli pointed out in a comment, make sure that you are still allowed vacation days after you give notice. Depending on your contract and local employment laws, you may not be guaranteed vacation once you declare your intent to resign.

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    I would add (as I did to Steve's comment) that whether or not you are entitled to be paid for unused time is dependant on the state in which you work. – Chris E Sep 22 '16 at 15:23
  • @ChristopherEstep Good point, I modified my answer to be more broad – David K Sep 22 '16 at 15:27
  • So you're suggesting that someone give 4 weeks notice and then takes 2 weeks off and lose their vacation pay? If they gave 2 weeks notice, got their vacation pay given to them and then taken 2 weeks off because they don't have a job, they'd come out on top. Or am I missing something here? OP doesn't specify where they live so I'm assuming they live in California. – The Muffin Man Sep 22 '16 at 20:26
  • @TheMuffinMan Normally the pay you receive from a vacation payout is equivalent to the paycheck you would receive if you were taking vacation time. By using vacation rather than taking the payout, you would also extend benefits. Additionally, the OP was not clear whether they intended to take two weeks and never come back, or take a week, then come back and work their final week. In the latter situation, you would need to use the vacation time rather than get a payout. – David K Sep 22 '16 at 20:30
  • Giving more notice is a courtesy but is in no way required. The onus is on the employer to keep tabs on amounts of holidays outstanding, who is a flight risk and who has unique knowledge that needs to be disseminated. – Alper Jul 17 '18 at 12:50

No, that's perfectly fine, if you have vacation time owed to you, then use it if you can. Your employer may request that you don't and negotiate a payment instead if they really need you for the two weeks, but that's another issue.

In all likelihood it won't be a problem. But in either case there is nothing unprofessional about it.

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    Agreed, it's not unprofessional, but make sure you have completed all exit interviews, knowledge transfers, etc. prior to leaving the company. – Steve Mangiameli Sep 22 '16 at 15:06
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    @Steve Those are not the employees' responsibility. The employer has to make sure those are handled. – user8036 Sep 22 '16 at 15:16
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    @JanDoggen, agreed. But making sure you are working with the employer will ensure your request is received well. It's as much about perception as it is about following the rules. – Steve Mangiameli Sep 22 '16 at 15:20
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    It's not two weeks 'notice' if you're gone the same day as you give them notice. Whether you're paid for two more weeks or not, leaving immediately on vacation is not giving notice, and will make you look unprofessional. – thursdaysgeek Sep 22 '16 at 16:01
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    It depends on the locale and culture I guess (and on opinion). In the US, it would likely be seen as very unprofessional to give notice that you'll be leaving in 2 weeks, and be gone the next day (regardless of technical employment status). If you have coworkers who will inherit any responsibilities you leave behind, they'll probably think less of you for dumping it on them with no notice. – Kent A. Sep 23 '16 at 12:55

Check your employee handbook. I haven't worked for a company since the 1980s that allowed people to take vacation during their notice period, even vacation previously scheduled.

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  • Would they allow it with a longer notice period? Say you are owed two weeks holiday which are scheduled, and should give two weeks notice, could you give four weeks notice, followed by one week work, two weeks holiday, another week work. – gnasher729 Sep 22 '16 at 19:40
  • No they would not where I have worked. But it really depends on the company. There is no legal requirement to pay for unused vacation in much of the US either. However if the company pays for vacation (which many companies do), it is in effect giving you that time after your notice is done. Unfortunately there are tax considerations because it will be lumped into your final check causing you to be taxed at a higher rate, so you still might not get paid as much as you think you will. You get it back when you file your taxes, but not so useful for living expenses in the meantime. – HLGEM Sep 22 '16 at 19:44

The first place to start looking is the employee handbook. That will let you know what they do with leftover vacation and sick leave. It can even depend on your jurisdiction. Some companies have to address issues like this differently for different groups of employees depending on which states laws apply.

Generally they want you to work every day during the notice period. It is for you to document and train, and for you to finish some of the open tasks. They are expecting this.

If they don't pay you for unused sick leave, but do pay for unused vacation; they may be very strict about documenting an illness during your notice period.

The determination of the last day is very important when planning the transition to your new job. How the old company handles things like vacation, sick and insurance is very important to know.

While a check for unused vacation is great, if it comes with the expense of being uninsured during that time period you may want to wait until you come back before resigning. Of course if the insurance coverage carries over till the end of the month...then taking a break after your last day of work may be relaxing.

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