Bleisure Travel

Do You Bleisure?

Who says you can’t combine business with pleasure?

There’s an increasing trend emerging which breaks out of the confines of the typical business trip. In fact, “bleisure” trips, are where a traveller combines business travel and leisure travel into one trip.  In the past year more than 2.2   million bleisure trips were taken by business travellers around the globe!

Different factors are driving this trend. Some bleisure travelers are slightly extending business trips to decrease the overall cost of taking a vacation, while others are taking advantage of flexible corporate travel policies.

This growing group of bleisure travelers is forcing companies to take a closer look at how they address travel and expense policies, while also providing opportunities for fun travel experiences for their employees.

Whether you’re a traveler looking to take a bleisure trip, or a company ready to bring your travel policy up to bleisure code, here are some things to consider:

Is blended travel already included in your policy, and is there broader employee awareness of the policy? Make plans to communicate the details sooner than later, since it’s likely travelers are already blending their business and leisure trips without direct knowledge of the policy terms. 

Clear traveler safety and duty of care policies become increasingly important during bleisure trips, so determine and clearly define what portion of employee trips will be covered by the company’s travel insurance, as well as your travel management company’s Duty Of Care services.

Who pays for what – and how? It’s common for companies to cover all costs for the days their travelers are there for business as well as the round-trip flight, while the employee foots the bill for anything associated with their personal time off. Expense reporting can get tricky, though, if you don’t define when business ends and leisure begins and establish clear processes to separate the two.

Decide whether employees will be allowed to book bleisure trips through your company’s corporate card. According to a recent SAP/Concur survey – 78% of companies said they sometimes or always allow bleisure travelers to book the leisure component of their trip through company channels, but it’s up to the discretion of the travel managers if this is something you’ll offer.

One in three business travellers, from entry-level to managerial will add a leisure component to at least one of their business trips this year. These travellers tend to be culturally curious and interested in food. Many employers are supportive of bleisure travel as “travel wellbeing” relates to job satisfaction – which means people stay productive and stay longer in their jobs.  The demographic most embracing of this change are Millennials, who account for 38% of all bleisure trips, however generation X (31%) and baby boomers (31%) are not far behind.

That being said, this trend creates a challenge — and an opportunity — for the travel and hospitality industry. As leisure travel continues to grow in popularity, the challenge for travel agencies will be how to offer both types of travel to the same person?  Travel Managers should investigate if/how their respective travel agency manages this type of travel and what measures they can put in place to ensure the costs and data for each are kept separate. Travel managers should also find out if their corporate travel agency has expertise in vacation/leisure travel and if so, is there a cost to leverage these services.

Does your travel policy cover bleisure travel?

With 40 years experience, PlusTravel Group is perfectly positioned to cater for all types of business travellers – whatever your needs may be – we’ll do whatever it takes to ensure your business travel is a success.  We have processes in place to ensure corporate and leisure travel stay separate –ensuring your data and expense information stays clean.

Plus Travel Group offers a wide range of corporate travel management services and brings many perks and benefits to the table for their valued clients. On the leisure side – we have vacation experts ready to help you make the most of your extended stay and/or to help you plan the perfect getaway!

 

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