Making the Most of Bleisure Travel
Making the Most of Bleisure Travel
Business travel is evolving, and more of us than ever are combining business and leisure into one trip. From extending a business visit into the weekend to bringing the family and making it a mini-vacation, bleisure travel is not only helping us see more of the world but giving us a greater work-life balance too. Here are our top tips for making the most of your bleisure trip.
What is Bleisure Travel?
“Bleisure” is a portmanteau combining the words “business” and “pleasure”. It’s a trend that sees corporate travellers make the most of their business trips by tagging on some leisure time to explore a destination, whether adding a few days or a week or more. Bleisure travel is an efficient way of seeing the places you’ve always dreamed; not only can you maximise your allocated holiday days but you can travel economically too, after all, your employer is probably already footing the bill for the flights and accommodation.
What you Need to Know about Bleisure Travel
Business travel used to be associated with rushing from hotel room to boardroom, and seeing little of a city beyond the taxi window on the way from the airport. Bleisure travel is about turning the inconvenience of business travel into an opportunity to see more of the world. While bleisure travel isn’t new, more flexible work cultures, new technology and the increasing desire for work-life balance are driving its growth. More employers understand that enabling employees to blend some personal time into their work travel boosts productivity, overall job satisfaction and can help them retain top talent.
Tips for a Smooth Bleisure Trip
From turning a business meeting into a long-weekend to tagging a week onto the end of a conference, here are a few tips to make your bleisure travel a success.
1. Plan Before you go
On a bleisure trip, you might have less time in a foreign city that you usually would on vacation. Be sure to plan and prioritise what you would most like to see ahead of time so you can fit it all in during your leisure period. Local colleagues are a great resource for finding authentic travel and dining experiences, and make sure you check out local travel guides too; we put together an overview of spending 48 Hours in Madrid and this guide to 48 Hours in Rome for Art Lovers.
2. Time it Right
Where you can, set up your business meetings on a Monday or Friday to take advantage of the weekend and turn your trip into a longer getaway without using any of your vacation days. The same goes for using national holidays – smart meeting planning will allow you to make the most of your time.
3. Check Company Policies on Bleisure Travel
As well as clearing your trip with your boss or colleagues, make sure you understand any policies around expensing and reimbursement. When blending work and travel some companies may ask you to pay the difference when choosing an alternative flight or have policies on booking hotels for extra nights. If in doubt, ask.
4. Bring a Partner or Friend
Make use of your air miles to bring your partner, friend or even the family along and turn your business travel into a shared experience. Your invitee(s) can explore the city while you wrap up the meetings and when your work is over you can head out and enjoy some quality time together.
5. Book the Right Hotel
There’s nothing worse than having to repack and drag your things across town to move from a business hotel into one that better suits the leisure part of your trip. Your best bet is to stay in a hotel offering a business-meets-leisure experience catering to bleisure travellers. You’ll have all the right amenities to stay productive on the work part of your trip and the right vibe when it comes to leisure time.
The Best Destinations for a European Bleisure Trip
Not all locations you do businesses area ideal for a bleisure trip, but we find that cities tend to be a great bet. Here are two of our favourite European cities for mixing business and pleasure.
Top Bleisure City: Amsterdam
Amsterdam is a European hub for business travellers and teeming with cultural, culinary and leisure gems. The Toren Amsterdam is a bleisure-friendly hotel located in the heart of Amsterdam’s Jordaan area and a stone's throw from sites like Dam Square, the Royal Palace and Central Station. Museums and the canals are all within walking distance, and quirky cafes and bustling bars are right on your doorstep.
A business trip to the Dutch capital can be made that much more exciting by inviting your SO and turning into a romantic trip. The Toren offers a range of packages to make your trip extra special. Our favourite is The Toren Luxury Package, which includes a bottle of champagne and strawberries to kick start a romantic weekend, and breakfast in bed delivered right to your room.
European Bleisure Capital: Madrid
The Spanish capital is a hotspot for international business and the city is fast seeing an influx of bleisure travellers. Lively and cosmopolitan, Madrid serves up a great mix of great food and cultural sites, making combining work and play in the city truly pleasurable.
The ideal home-away-from-home for bleisure travellers, The Pavilions Madrid is minutes away from Plaza de Colón and many of Madrid’s finest cultural legacies like art museums, as well as restaurants and bars. Take advantage of the hotel’s Stay Longer, Save More offer to enjoy great discounts on additional nights – ideal if your family have decided to tag along, as the offer includes the family suite too!
Over to you, what business trips do you have upcoming in your calendar? Are you planning to turn it into a bleisure trip?