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Combining business and leisure trips:
A quantitative look at the bleisure phenomenon

 

July, 2016

 

Recent technological progress has changed the way people work. Mobile and internet devices allow uninterrupted connection to the outside world and employees may switch from work to personal activities and vice versa multiple times during the day. The mix between work and personal time increasingly impacts more areas of business operations. In this paper we study bleisure - the situation in which an employee is adding personal (leisure) days to his or her business trip.

 

For this research we analyzed a data set of air transactions corresponding to business trips booked by Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) worldwide between 2011 and 2015. Most of the results are based on a subset of 7.3 million flights taken by 1.9 million business travelers during 2015. Our definition of bleisure requires a Saturday night stay at destination either at the beginning or at the end of a trip, or both. Using this definition, we find that every year 20% of business travelers take bleisure trips, and these account for 7% of all business trips. These values have remained largely unchanged since 2011, which indicates that this is not a new phenomenon.