Business Travel On The Rise With Focus On Personal Value

Results from the fourth annual Embassy Suites Business Travel Survey show that while the recovering economy is still holding down the number of business trips taken, those who do travel are mixing business with pleasure more often than not. The report also highlights a keen interest in value – perhaps a lesson learned from tough times in the recent past.

“This year’s survey shows us that while people are traveling more for business; those guests want to get more – literally – out of every trip,” said John Lee, vice president, brand marketing for Embassy Suites Hotels in a release.

Noting the value of “face time” with customers, business travelers surveyed reported cutbacks on travel due to the economy down ten percent less than last year. Rather than skipping travel to meet customers face to face, some business travelers are cutting back on other travel expenses like meals and incidentals. The survey indicates that overall, business travelers are looking for better value in the hotels they use.

“Despite all the great technological advances, there is still no substitute for meeting someone in person,” says Cynthia Good, CEO & founding editor of Little PINK Book, a leading digital platform for businesswomen.

Going a step further on maximizing value, business travelers are getting more into bleisure travel by extending their business stay for personal travel time. Of those surveyed, 61 percent reported an average of three additional days added on to business trips for personal reasons.The logic is sound too as the company is already paying transportation costs to and from the destination. If business takes travel to a desirable destination, why not stay a while and enjoy some quality vacation time? Why not have a family member join them for the “leisure” time after the “business” time is complete?

Where do business travelers most likely extend their trips? The top cities to turn a business trip into a bleisure trip are San Diego (60 percent), Seattle (39 percent) and Denver (36 percent).

Across the pond, bleisure travel is a popular option in the UK with the Sunday Times summing it up nicely and calling it “a blending of business and leisure – which is the ideal compromise between the conflicting demands of a busy career and a balanced homelife.”

[Flickr image via stanrandom]