Isabella’s Professional Travel Tips: ‘Bleisure’ = Mixing Business and Leisure

There can be few things as disheartening as being on a business trip alone during the summer months when everyone around you seems to be on holiday. The next time you have a business trip, why not consider combining business and leisure in a ‘bleisure’ trip?

One of the hottest new trends in travel is the ‘bleisure’ phenomena. In one recent study by a travel company, 50% of ‘Millennial’ travellers report taking at least one bleisure trip per year. Such trips can produce benefits for the traveller and her company. The bleisure traveller is able to balance work and leisure time more successfully and surveys show that workers with a better work-life balance are happier, more productive and stay longer with their companies. Those benefits translate into a win-win for everyone!

Here’s a pro-tip: detailed studies of sporting team records show that visiting teams in Texas (playing baseball against the Texas Rangers) and  Orlando (playing basketball against the Orlando Magic) win more games by larger margins. One of the key reasons is that visiting team players often take their families who visit the local amusement parks (“Six Flags Over Texas” and “Wet n’ Wild” in Arlington, and the Disney and Universal Studio Parks in Orlando). The players are more relaxed because they spend time with their families and that translates into more wins for the visitors!

However, there are important protocols and boundaries to be maintained when travelling on bleisure. I have some ideas that might help you make that next bleisure trip successful.

First, as in many other part of life, communication is key to a successful bleisure trip. You should always be upfront with your supervisor about intentions to combine some leisure time on a business trip. Employers understand the value of keeping employees happy but they also worry about expenses. Therefore, inform your boss that you have a disciplined plan for being successful on the trip and keeping expenses fair, even when you are accompanied by family or friends.

Communication with your family is also very important. Your travel companions, including children, need to understand that the primary reason for the trip is business and that you continue to have responsibilities even if they are travelling with you. Let family know in advance if you will be absent from meals because of work commitments. Be careful to segregate business time and family time so everyone understands the boundaries.

Next, make sure that you have a clear plan for accomplishing your business and leisure objectives. That starts with packing. Pack with the two objectives and separate that packing in your case to ensure that you have all that you need for both business and leisure activities. Plan your days away carefully and ensure that the schedule is shared with your supervisor and your travel companions. When you are working, encourage your family or friends to have fun activities they can enjoy without you.

Always be fair about separating expenses. If you are staying extra days, close out that business hotel bill and start a new one for the leisure days. Split meal expenses scrupulously so that your employer can see that you are using best efforts at cost control. If your employer is paying for a rental car, then make sure that it is used primarily for business. Segregate your expenses and be prepared to graciously show your personal expenses if the company wants to ensure that you are maintaining proper expense control.

Here’s another pro-tip: If your company has a great rate with a hotel then you can benefit from staying in the same hotel when your business is complete and you want a few days of leisure. However, you might be able to save money by moving to a less expensive property. Shop around a save!

Make a quiet place for yourself to work and ask your travel companions to respect that work space and time. You’ll still need to answer emails, communicate with your company and handle other work that you would normally undertake in the office. Giving yourself the proper space will improve your productivity.

Finally, and this is very important, take advantage of the bleisure trip to be very successful on the business side! By over-delivering on your business expectations, you demonstrate the real advantages of traveling on bleisure. You, your employer and your family will reap the benefits of bleisure travel with your success.

Travelling with family and friends on a bleisure trip can be very rewarding. It can allow you to enjoy a destination in a different way than if you are alone on business. Just follow my few easy recommendations and enjoy your bleisure time exploring!



2 Comments to “Isabella’s Professional Travel Tips: ‘Bleisure’ = Mixing Business and Leisure”

    1. Thank you so much for the encouragement! We want to create a blog that will be interesting and also useful to our readers. Thus, comments like yours are very important to us. Let us know if you have any additional questions we might answer.
      Warm regards,
      Isabella and Bart

      Bart Bybee at 11:59 am

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