“All work and no play” is quickly becoming an outdated concept as more business travelers opt to extend their travel plans for a little extra adventure while in town, commonly referred to as “bleisure” trips.
According to a recent study conducted by Expedia Media Solutions and Luth Research, these hybrid business and leisure treks account for nearly half of all business travel in the U.S. Approximately 40 percent of those travelers said they typically add leisure activities or extended hotel stays within one to four weeks of booking their business trips. So how can hotel marketers reach bleisure travelers with the right offers when they’re ripe for extra bookings?
Lodging Magazine Guest Writer and Luth Research President, Roseanne Luth, shares more insight into this growing business and leisure travel trends and details five strategies to convert more business trips to “bizcations.”
1. Extend Discounted Rates | Hotels that offer additional nights at negotiated group travel rates are winning extra bookings with bleisure travelers interested in stretching their vacation time and travel dollars. These offers are especially appealing for conference attendees who’d like to invite a spouse or significant other to join the trip before or after the event.
2. Add Loyalty Points | In addition to cost savings, bleisure travelers are attracted to gaining extra customer loyalty points, which can include benefits such as concierge services, fitness facilities, additional room discounts, and upgrades.
3. Create Bleisure Packages | Network with other local attractions, festival organizers, museums, and tours to create value-driven packages that highlight the best of what your city has to offer and entice visitors to extend their stays.
3. Include Conference Excursions | Coordinate with event planners to include tickets to networking excursions connected with conferences. Hotels can offer commissions to organizers who promote events that encourage extended stays and highlight hotel amenities.
4. Target Your Package Pitch | Before you execute a bleisure marketing strategy, research your target group demographics, planned activities, length of stay, and other travel details. This information will allow you to better tailor your bizcation pitch to meet their business objectives and appeal to their tastes for adventure.