Why Leisure Travel Is Becoming A Big Business
The term “Bleisure” travel is a relatively new term to define the combination of business and leisure travel. The fairly recent term has garnered a lot of attention recently catching the eyes of travel agents, as an opportunity for growth.
Travel agents are riding this wave and are finding this shift in lifestyle especially lucrative. According to Travel Weekly’s 2016 Consumer Trends report, the percentage of leisure trips that have a business component jumped to 17 percent, up from 11 percent in 2012 and 14 percent in 2015. Although Bleisure travel is growing at a rapid pace, it is more prevalent in certain metropolitan areas.
New York City, according to travel agency CheapOair has grown over 20 percent in bleisure travel each year for the past three years. There are many factors that can be considered for this uptick. Some of which is that the average ticket values have come down over the past three years, making it more affordable to bring a traveling companion. Another is that it can save a company money staying over a Saturday night, which can reduce the cost per ticket even more.
The average bleisure traveler is either a corporate or government employee, with an age anywhere between the late twenties and early fifties says Amy Blanco, branch manager at Omega World Travel in City of Industry, California. These demographics can help shape the marketing strategies used to attract new bookings within this segment.
According to Blanco, the business travelers who are most easily converted to bleisure, come from “corporate accounts that have clients in other states or countries.” She also notes, “It is possible to take leisure travelers and convert them to bleisure if the type of business/job they are in requires them to travel.”
Agencies like Blancos are utilizing social media as well as their call centers to suggest to business clients what the decrease in fare would be if they stayed over a Saturday night, or to look for options that would help best accommodate the business traveler to have a few leisure days of travel included in the trip.
Bleisure travel is becoming a big business, and a new segment for travel agencies to grow but like many other trends, relies on many factors to stay relevant.
What is your experience with bleisure travel?