Tired of traveling from one destination to another and being the in and out business traveler? Trends are changing and many who travel for their jobs are now engaging in what the industry calls “bleisure” travel.
Bleisure travel is a mix of business and leisure travel and occurs when one adds a day or two of leisure travel to the beginning or end of a business trip. According to a recent National Car Rental study, this new trend is popular among 90% of Millennials, 81% Generation X and 80% of Baby Boomers. The study also found employees who engage in bleisure travel tend to be satisfied with their quality of life as well as their work-life balance than non-bleisure travelers.
This is good news for host destinations and travelers too. Meeting planners can negotiate pre and post conference rates at host hotels, help coordinate unique city or local attraction tours and share dining options encouraging travelers to experience the taste and true flavors of an area.
Maurice Honor, Hertz Corporation vice president of travel distribution sales, said, “The rise in bleisure travel correlates with the fact that more and more people want to create a better work-life balance for themselves.” Honor mentions, “If business travelers have the opportunity to visit a new or interesting destination, they’re finding ways to maximize that opportunity for personal enjoyment, which can also include bringing family members on trips.”
According to a Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) survey, roughly 84 percent of North American business travelers have strongly voiced the quality of business travel experiences impacts business results. Many employees who are required to travel for work believe the experience impacts job satisfaction and productivity.
Findings from multinational study commissioned by Expedia Group Media Solutions indicate:
• 72% of bleisure travelers said there are destinations they have visited or will visit in the future for business that they would like to extend for bleisure
• 56% said they are more likely to consider a bleisure trip in a destination with great food and restaurants
• Leading factors that influence bleisure travel decisions include traveling to a destination with great entertainment (48%) and visiting an iconic or bucket list destination (43%); easy-to-navigate destinations are also influential factors
• Compared to a typical vacation, 57% of bleisure travelers spend the same amount of money or more on a bleisure trip, and more than 75% save money specifically for bleisure travel
Jayesh Patel, Hertz senior vice president of brand says, “We’re uniquely positioned to support the bleisure customer.” Patel also mentioned the growth of bleisure travel has influenced the company’s service offerings and partnerships. In a recent Hertz Hub frequent traveler survey about 66 percent indicated a spouse or significant other joins them on bleisure trips.
Bleisure travel might be the best, trendiest perk that results in a healthy work-life balance. Many corporations want what is best for their employees. Corporate support to meet this employee demand is a major factor in driving the bleisure growth rate. So, the next time you need to travel for business, consider adding a couple days to the trip. Since the company is covering transportation costs, bring the family, plan to enjoy that long weekend exploring a new destination and for less!