Business trips make up approximately 30% of annual travel, according to Bridgestreet Hospitality’s 2014 Report, causing people around the world to search for new ways to add a little pleasure to their otherwise mundane business excursions. The coined term is “bleisure” travel. Studies have shown that “bleisure” travel not only adds value to business trips but also promotes productivity at work.
Even though the term is appearing more and more on social media, “bleisure” travel isn’t a new concept. For years, many employees have tacked on a few extra days or even brought along a friend or significant other to make their trips more enjoyable. But what if you don’t have the extra time or money to squeeze in a little vacation? Consider a few of these tips to make the most of your upcoming business trips.
Rent a car or use public transportation
One of the most popular “bleisure” activities is sightseeing. Renting a car or using public transportation will allow you to explore the city from a local’s point-of-view. Whether it’s on your lunch break or on your way to the airport, you’ll be able to experience more of your destination without the restrictions of a taxi or shared ride.
Leave the airport or hotel for dining
Food is a great way to learn about a city and gain cultural experience. Eating out will give you the opportunity to step outside and further explore your destination – and your stomach will love you for it.
Schedule your meetings towards the weekends
Yes, this will require you to drop some extra bills, but with Airbnb and Couchsurfing, it’s not unfathomable to book inexpensive lodging for the weekend. Plus, you won’t have to compromise your precious PTO on additional travel time.
Attend a conference in a new city
If you’re not in the position to travel for meetings, ask your HR department if your company will pay for you to attend a training conference or seminar for professional development. You’ll be able to travel to a new place while strengthening your skills and building your network.
Utilize your hotel accommodations
If you get the chance to choose your hotel, do some research to see which spots accommodate a “bleisure” lifestyle. Many hotels pride themselves on offering the perfect work-play balance with plush meeting spaces, gourmet menus, fitness centers, and poolside coffee breaks.
Make yourself at home at the airport
Even if you need to be in and out within 24 hours, airports feature a slew of “bleisure-friendly” amenities like fancy lounges with work stations and complimentary Wi-Fi, bar and restaurant areas, and even full-service spas and salons for massages and facials.