New b-leisure trend is secret to combating UK’s stress epidemic

Business travellers are looking to mix business with pleasure when travelling internationally in a new trend called b-leisure, a new study reveals.

A quarter of business travellers plan a business trip specifically for a change of scenery whilst working b-leisure

A quarter of business travellers plan a business trip specifically for a change of scenery whilst working

According to a new survey conducted by FoundersCard, many entrepreneurs are extending previously scheduled business trips to make time for some fun in a trend called b-leisure.

FoundersCard randomly selected 334 of its 20,000 members to find out how affluent business executives plan to spend their downtime next year.

Four fifths (81 per cent) of those who responded to FoundersCard’s survey said they have taken trips that combine business and leisure, while 51 per cent said they plan to do this at least one time in 2017. Additionally, 23 per cent of respondents said they plan to travel specifically for a change of scenery while working, which FoundersCard calls a work-cation.

Somewhat paradoxically, however, 80 per cent of respondents to FoundersCard’s survey say that they plan to take a vacation with the sole purpose of unplugging from work in 2017. When they do travel for fun, they’re heading to places like Hawaii, Miami, Aspen, and Turks & Caicos, the survey found.

Line between work and play is being blurred

But it seems that for today’s modern entrepreneur, the line between work and play is increasingly being blurred.

‘My guess, especially as a fellow entrepreneur, is that they’re taking hybrid business-leisure trips in order to make it possible for them to take the occasional trip in which they unplug entirely,’ says Eric Kuhn, FoundersCard’s founder and CEO.

‘I wouldn’t be surprised if many of them were unable to fully disconnect from their companies more than once a year, and traveling for leisure that sparingly can put you on the fast track to burnout.

‘Half of respondents plan to travel five to 10 times per year for leisure next year, and nearly a quarter say they plan to vacation even more than that.

‘This trend isn’t limited to entrepreneurs, it seems. The travel industry has even given the phenomenon its own name: ‘b-leisure.’

A recent study by Expedia Media Solutions found that 43 per cent of all business trips, both international and domestic, are extended to include some kind of leisure activity. This is especially common with people who are traveling to another country for work, which makes sense given the expense and time commitment that international flights require.

According to a 2014 Skift report on b-leisure travel, more than half of those who extend a business trip bring family members or a significant other along with them.

Spending more time in a country you’re visiting for business also provides a chance to relax and enjoy the sights, whether that means checking out the British Museum in London or Victoria Peak in Hong Kong.

‘It makes the stress of business travel more bearable,’ concludes British public relations adviser Stuart Bruce

‘It definitely makes me work better. I’m more relaxed, but I also get a better understanding of the city and culture that I’m working in.’

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