Tuesday 3 February 2015

GUEST BLOG: Perfect pairing: serviced apartments benefit bleisure travellers

Just as leisure travellers admit they are always working – 43 per cent of international travellers always take their professional mobile devices with them on holiday or weekend trips*– business travellers are beginning to extend their stays to include a leisure component. This blurring between business and leisure travel, dubbed ‘bleisure’, was identified as a major trend in the recent Skiftmagazine Megatrends Defining Travel in2015.

For many business travellers worldwide, bleisure is already a way of life, with data from BridgeStreet Global Hospitality’s 2014 Bleisure Report indicating 83 per cent of respondents use time on business trips to explore the city they’re visiting.

Most annual travel is for leisure, with business travel making up less than 30 per cent, and according to BridgeStreet's survey, nearly half (46 per cent) of business travellers add personal travel days to business trips. Having surveyed more than 640 recent guests, BridgeStreet’s original research reveals an overwhelmingly positive sentiment toward bleisure as the latest business travel trend.

While a desire for ‘bleisure’ is growing amongst employees, the majority of businesses have yet to incorporate the concept. Nearly 60 per cent of respondents indicated their company does not have a policy on bleisure, with an additional 27 per cent unsure of any policy. But bleisure is about more than rest and relaxation; these trips can actually impact employee satisfaction. Seventy-nine per cent of recent BridgeStreet guests indicated that adding leisure trips to extended business travel (3+ weeks) adds value to an assignment, while 73 per cent feel that the opportunity to take bleisure trips benefits them as an employee.

With 95 per cent of travellers more than or equally likely to take a bleisure trip in the next five years, business could benefit from implementing policies surrounding this trend. Employees feel bleisure opportunities benefit them and add value to work assignments, contributing to higher job satisfaction and loyalty.

Clear and fair guidance around ‘bleisure’ trips will likely help foster trust between companies and their employees as well as motivate them, make them more productive and create a positive attitude toward the work/life balance. With the proper implementation, who knows, ‘bleisure’ travel may even have a positive effect on a company’s bottom line. 

To learn more about the rise of bleisure travel and view the complete Bleisure Report visit http://www.bridgestreet.com/bleisure.

* 2013 Orbitz trend report

BridgeStreet is exhibiting at the Business Travel Show on 25-26 February, Olympia Grand, London. Register for a free visitor pass now www.businesstravelshow.com 


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