Conferencing, Travel

The bleisure boom: travel tips to combine work and play

Jul 10, 2019, Author: Candice May

It doesn’t quite roll off the tongue, but ‘bleisure’ travel is arguably the coolest trend to happen in the history of business travel. However, in today’s always on, always connected workforce, the art of blending a business trip with leisure excursions isn’t as easy as it sounds. Here’s how to really embrace everything that is bleisure travel.


Why bleisure travel?

When you’re younger, jet-setting for work can be exciting. But after years on the road, it becomes tiring and lonely. With the rise of bleisure travel – a buzzword for travellers, particularly millennials keen on achieving a work-life balance – you can turn what was once seen as a career inconvenience into a prime opportunity to expand horizons and experience new things. The leisure part of bleisure travel gives you the chance to relax and reboot, and is a very prudent way to maximise your holiday time and see the world.

Think like a backpacker

You’re combining two trips into one, but you don’t get twice the luggage! You’re probably staying in comfortable hotels and travelling business class, but you need to pack smart. Pack versatile clothes that you can use for both business and casual, and be absolutely sure that you aren’t bringing too much. Also make the most of your carry-on by investing in some compression packing cubes to maximise the amount you can fit into a small space.


Work first, play later

After all, business is the reason you’re on this trip in the first place. If you can schedule your meetings or conference at the beginning of your trip and add on extra days for 100% leisure time, that’s brilliant. If not, make sure you balance your time well and are present in the whole process – this means being totally focused during your meetings and turning off your email notifications when you’re done for the day exploring.

Travel outside the box

Just because plenty of bleisure trips begin and end in the same city doesn’t mean yours has to. Not that enthused about your destination? Look at it as a launching point for the next leg of your trip. If you’re travelling to Europe, this is especially easy as different countries and cultures are always just a short train ride away. For example, if you’re flying to London, you can easily catch the Eurostar to nearby cities like Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels.


When in Rome, do as the Romans do!

Free time is usually limited on bleisure trips, so make the most of it! Explore local cafés in your neighbourhood instead of grabbing another Frappuccino at the familiar Starbucks. Visit museums and sights instead of watching the next Game of Thrones episode in your hotel room. With bulky flight costs off your budget, you may even be able to treat yourself to a Michelin star restaurant, a full spa day with a personal masseuse or a tee-time at a PGA golf course. You only live once!

Bleisure checklist:

Make sure your boss and teammates hear about it from your first. You don’t want your first Instagram selfie on the French Riviera to leave a bad taste in their mouth!

Make the most of your downtime and keep your leisuby doing some pre-travel research

Build weekends and public holidays into your trip where possible so you can enjoy the city without having to take much paid leave.

Sign up for all the travel loyalty programmes you can. Frequent flyer and hotel points are a benefit of business travel, but you can use these rewards for your personal use.

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