One Leader Is Promoting A Four-Day Workweek To Encourage Tourism
As things begin to return to some semblance of normal, countries are likely going to examine ways to encourage travel. One country wants to provide travel vouchers to its citizens, to encourage domestic travel. But what about a four-day workweek to encourage people to travel? The Prime Minister of New Zealand offered up that suggestion yesterday.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern mentioned the prospect of a four-day workweek to spur domestic travel amongst Kiwis. While the Prime Minister didn’t say it would be mandatory, she did say it would help the country. Here’s what the PM had to say in a Facebook Live video after a visit to the Rotorua region, a high tourism region of the country:
I hear lots of people suggesting we should have a four-day workweek. Ultimately that really sits between employers and employees.
I’d really encourage people to think about that if you’re an employer and in a position to do so — to think about if that’s something that would work for your workplace. Because it certainly would help tourism all around the country.
The tourism industry is important to New Zealand, as it employs 1 in 8 New Zealanders, according to government data. Of course, a significant part of that business comes from international travel. But the Prime Minister clearly wants to encourage domestic travel to spur some of that economic activity that comes from the tourism industry.
Is This a Good Idea?
Obviously, this is not a one-size-fits-all solution for different countries. Personally, I’d love to see President Trump come out and encouraged businesses to do this for a period of time to get people moving again. But that’s unlikely to happen in my view since we seem to have a very archaic view that working more means increased productivity.
But I think it’s intriguing that the Prime Minister of New Zealand is telling her country’s business owners to take a look at this option and see if it works for their business.
Of course, part of getting people traveling is to instill a level of comfort where people feel safe traveling. People need to know that planes and hotels are meeting cleanliness standards. They also have to have confidence in taking part in things like eating at restaurants and visiting tourist attractions.
The Prime Minister of New Zealand is encouraging business owners to examine the idea of a four-day workweek. She thinks a shorter workweek would encourage more domestic travel to help reinvigorate the tourism industry in New Zealand. It’s not going to be something that’s required, but serves as another means to get people moving again.