How Employees are Using PTO Exchange to Build the Benefits Packages of Their Dreams

“One-size-fits-all” benefits are out, and flexible benefits are in. 

If you’re at a company with a multigenerational workforce, then you know how much the benefits and needs of your workforce can fluctuate. Your Gen Z employees don’t have the same wants as your Baby Boomers. To make everyone happy while keeping costs down, consider implementing flexible benefits to allow your employees to create customized benefits packages that meet their individualized needs. 

The heart of flexible benefits is unused PTO. American workers leave millions of days of unused PTO on the table each year. Employees earn this time, so it should be treated like compensation. Compensation with a value attached to it can be converted like a currency. With PTO Exchange, employees can unlock the full value of their PTO and convert it into benefits that matter most to them, like travel, student loan payments, charitable contributions, and more.

Here are some ways employees have used PTO Exchange to convert their unused PTO. 


Employees can use PTO not only to take time off for their vacations but to pay for their vacations. With PTO Exchange, employees can convert their unused PTO to pay for airfare (hello first class!), hotels, cruises, rental cars, and more. Some employees have even used their unused PTO to purchase tickets to Disney World. Plus, you can extend your trip with any leftover days you have.

I was able to use my exchange cash to take a trip to my favorite city - Paris! I am so thankful I got to use my leftover PTO days in exchange for cash. —Darcy D.

Thank you, PTO Exchange. I enjoyed celebrating the New Year in New York City and Peddler’s Village with my family using money from exchanging my PTO. —Sujata K.

I used my PTO for my trip to Disneyland! —Paisleigh C.

Charitable Donations

Whether you want to donate to your favorite charity, donate your unused PTO to a co-worker in need, or use it for volunteering, PTO Exchange allows you to use your PTO assets to build community at your company. 

I selected Camp Read-A-Rama to be the recipient of a portion of my unused PTO hours.  The mission of Camp Read-A-Rama is to make "the U.S. more literate, one child and one book at a time!"  My children have participated in Camp Read-A-Rama's summer program and continue to be avid readers.  My oldest daughter used her experiences from Camp Read-A-Rama to become a kindergarten teacher.  You can see what a wonderful program Camp Read-A-Rama is for yourself at —Charles H.

I benefitted from donated PTO many years ago, which was so helpful for me and my family.  I was blessed that my coworkers wanted to assist when my family members were significantly injured in a auto accident.  I love being able to pay it forwards! —Lori G. 

Financial Wellness

Perhaps the most popular way employees like using PTO Exchange is for their financial wellness. Employees have benefitted from converting their PTO into retirement contributions, emergency savings, everyday expenses, 529 college plan savings, HSA contributions, and more. 

Process was very simple and easy. Happy I was able to convert time I would have lost to funds for retirement. Such a great benefit! —Justin S. 

There are times in your life when you just need a little extra help. In May last year, my husband and I added twins (a boy and girl) to our family. We already have a 5-year-old daughter as well. With my job being such a stable and enjoyable job, we made the decision to have my husband stay home with our new babies. By exchanging these vacation days, I can help support our new family needs and cover the double expenses that twins come with. —Gabriella I. 

I’ve really enjoyed being able to exchange my PTO time for tangible benefits. Having a family with small children, we don’t get to travel much, so I always end up with an excess of PTO. It’s so nice to use that PTO to help pay down bills or use it toward my HSA to help with health expenses. It’s awesome to have the flexibility to choose when to use my PTO or to use it for real-life benefits too. —Angela M. 

Tuition/Education/Student Loans

Several employees have used PTO Exchange to convert their unused PTO to cash and use it to pay for continuing education, college tuition, or student loan payments

I am using the funds to help pay for my doctorate in Health Sciences. —Michelle S.

The first time I utilized PTO Exchange, it was applied to my student loans. This was extremely beneficial as there was a pause on interest, so the money went even further to reduce my debt. —Jazmine W. 

My daughter applied for college and was accepted. However, we were unable to pay her fees. We were about to cancel her admission when I came to know about PTO Exchange and exchange my PTO. This amount will be a big help for her to achieve her dream of enrolling in college and getting her bachelor’s degree. She’s the first girl from the family to go to college. Thank you, PTO Exchange. —Muhammad S.  

Custom Benefits Made Easy

The sky’s the limit when it comes to exchanging your unused PTO. No matter your benefits needs, we’re able to help. Learn how to exchange your unused PTO to create a customized flexible benefits package today with PTO Exchange.

Published on Mar 23, 2023 by Josh Reinhard

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Discover The Real Story Behind Unlimited PTO 

Unlimited PTO might not be as amazing as many HR executives make it out to be. Find out more with this research report conducted by Lighthouse Research and Advisory.