As one of the world’s largest retailers and technology companies, Amazon has set a new standard in employee benefits – including vacation time. With over 800,000 employees globally and an ever-expanding business model, it’s critical that every aspect of employee compensation is streamlined and efficient.

So how does vacation time work at Amazon? Let's take a deep dive into the specifics:

So how does vacation time work at Amazon? Let’s take a deep dive into the specifics:


Amazon offers salaried employees up to two weeks of paid vacation each year. However, unlike some other companies where you receive your full allotment at once on January 1st or even upon hire, Amazon’s approach (at least for hourly workers) is known as an “accrual” system.

What this means is that you earn your vacation days gradually throughout the year based on hours worked – rather than being granted them all upfront. This works well for both employer and employee because it ensures that anyone who terminates their contract leaves with only what they have earned up until that point.

In practical terms:

In practical terms:

– For part-time hourly associates working under 20 hours per week during a calendar year: Up to four days.
– For full-time hourly associates working between 20 – 39 hours per week during a calendar year: Between 24 – 40 hours accrued (depending on years of service with Amazon).
– Salaried associates are entitled to two weeks’ worth of paid time off annually regardless of years served accrue at different rates depending on tenure ranging from eight days after one year to fifteen after six.[3]


Amazon does offer payout options for accumulated or unused PTO/vacation days when an associate voluntarily separates but there are conditions:

An employee must request such payout explicitly upon separation,
The remaining balance will be then calculated accordingly based on his/her pay rate as if he/she was still employed
All final payment checks include any remaining PTO/vacation balances
Additional clarification can be found in the recently updated Amazon US Vacation Time Policy, which states that associates will receive payout of any accrued and unused PTO upon voluntary termination except when an associate separates from employment due to constructive discharge or under such other circumstances as required by applicable law.

Requesting time off

Now let’s talk about how you actually go about requesting time off at Amazon. The company runs on a self-service model whereby employees manage and schedule their own vacation days through an online portal known as the Time Off Task (TOT) platform. This function can be accessed via mobile devices, too – albeit with limited functionalities.

The process is straightforward: associates must log into their TOT account, select their desired date(s), enter a reason for absence – such as vacation or illness – then request it. You’ll ideally want to submit your request well in advance to give supervisors enough time to approve your request according to Business Coverage needs of each unit during that period.

If approved, you will receive a confirmation email further informing you of approval details like dates requested etc., if not there is an optional unpaid Personal Leave of Absence option depending on local legal requirements.

Restrictions on using vacation hours

It should come as no surprise that different businesses have different restrictions around the usage conditions for PTO or any type of employee leave. This applies even more so within modern organizations like Amazon with multiple business units running operations 24/7 year-round.

Amazon has some specific limitations when it comes to accommodating all-time off requests because they fully understand the criticality of coverage across key Retail areas:

Associates may not use Paid Time Off benefits prior supervisor pre-approval.
Requests are placed based exclusively on seniority order considering operational staffing demands outages
Multiple Associates won’t get permission nor special treatment over others during Peak Periods operations (i.e., Black Friday)
Sick leave taken while scheduled to work will result automatically treated first from existing accrued personal days before PTO is used


Amazon has set the bar high regarding employee benefits, including its vacation policy. Whether you’re an hourly worker or a salaried manager, the company offers ample paid time off to help maintain work-life balance.

However, it’s crucial to understand Amazon’s policies around PTO accrual rates and restrictions on usage. While there are some limitations in place due to operational demands such as peak periods that many business owners take inspiration from for more stringent timeoff plans like not allowing employees  to request leave during certain months of the year (similar to how lawmakers restrict workers in industries like hospitality & retail), associates can still enjoy flexibility and autonomy when scheduling their vacations around work commitments with proper negotiation if suitable coverage options aren’t available.