Summer vacation is just around the corner at KU. I believe most of you are probably making splendid plans for your holiday. Maybe many students are preparing to study English or another subject more deeply, while others are happily planning their time and thinking about an enjoyable and fruitful summer season. Among the many gorgeous plans, overseas trips will be included. As you know, visitors to foreign countries must pass through immigration checkpoints, and officers in some countries such as the U.K and Thailand occasionally ask whether you are traveling on business or holiday. We Koreans are used to saying “vacation,” and the officer’s word, “holiday” seems new to us. The two words have a similar but slightly different meaning. Therefore, I will teach you the similarity and difference between vacation and holiday.
If you look up words such as vacation, holiday and leave in an English-Korean dictionary to find their meanings, they can all refer to time away from work or school. However, they have slightly different meanings and connotations. Especially, the terms "vacation" and "holiday" are often used interchangeably, but there can be delicate shades of meaning depending on the context and the region.
"Vacation" typically refers to a planned and extended period of time off from work or school, usually for the purpose of rest, relaxation, or travel. It is often taken annually and can be paid or unpaid, depending on the employer's policy. Here are a few examples of how the word "vacation" might be used in a conversation:
Person 1: What are your plans for the summer?
Person 2: I'm taking a vacation to Spain. I've always wanted to visit Madrid and Barcelona.
Person 1 : I haven't seen you in a while. Where have you been?
Person 2 : I just got back from a week-long vacation in Hawaii. It was so beautiful there.
Person 1: Are you busy next week?
Person 2: No, I'm on vacation from work. I'm planning on doing some hiking and camping.
On the other hand, "holiday" can refer to a specific day or period of time that is set aside for celebration or commemoration. For example, Christmas is a holiday that is celebrated on December 25th in many countries around the world. Here are a few examples of how the word "holiday" might be used in a conversation:
Person 1: What are you doing for Korean New Year’s Day?
Person 2: I'm going to have ttoekguk with my family. It's one of my favorite holidays.
Person 1: Is the office closed on Tuesday?
Person 2: Yes, it's Samiljeol. It's a national holiday in Korea.
Person 1: Do you celebrate any holidays in December?
Person 2: Yes, I celebrate Christmas. It's a holiday that's important to my family.
In some regions, such as in the United Kingdom, "holiday" can be used to refer to a period of time off from work or school, similar to the way "vacation" is used in the United States. Overall, the main difference between vacation and holiday is that vacation is generally a longer period of time off from work or school, while holiday can refer to a specific day or period of time set aside for celebration or commemoration.
And here is one more word you can use to refer to any time off from work or school. It is “leave.” According to WordNet, "leave" is a more general term that can refer to “the period of time during which you are absent from work or duty”, including vacation, sick leave, or personal leave. It can be paid or unpaid, depending on the employer's policy and the reason for the leave. Here's an example of how "leave" might be used in a conversation:
Person 1: Hey, are you coming to next week’s meeting?
Person 2: No, I'm not going to be able to make it. I have to take some leave to deal with a domestic affair.
In this example, "leave" is being used to refer to time off from work that Person 2 is taking to deal with a family affair. This is a common use of "leave," as it can refer to any type of time off, whether it is for personal reasons or due to illness or other unforeseen circumstances.
In short, "vacation" refers specifically to time off for rest or travel, "holiday" refers to a specific day or period of time for celebration or commemoration, and "leave" is a more general term that can refer to any time off from work or school.