ENIT survey finds business travel will combine with leisure travel
Historically, business travel and leisure travel have been on different tracks. But a new survey from ENIT (the Italian National Tourist Board) has found that those tracks may be converging in the future.
The survey reports that one in six of those interviewed were willing to accept combined travel with working on holiday as a strategic choice; 55% said it gives visitors ‘longer to spend in the destination’; and 51% said it is ‘less expensive, with flights at quieter times’.
The rise in flexible working brought on by the pandemic over the last couple of years is one of the factors that has made the most significant contribution to the increase in blended travel, according to the survey.
According to Euromonitor forecasts, spending worldwide by travellers combining business and leisure was estimated at $200 billion in 2022. That number is set to increase to around $360 billion by 2027.
ENIT president and CEO Ivana Jelinic said that there are other indicators of the popularity of blended travel as well.
“The popularity of blended travel is also evident in data regarding payment,” she said. “On Trip.Biz, travellers are increasingly selecting both ‘Personal Travel’ (for personal spending) and ‘Mixed Payments’ (to supplement company budgets with personal funds). In 2022, bookings for personal flights rose by 22% compared to 2021, and by 33% compared to before the pandemic, with a similar trend evident for accommodation bookings. The number of bookings with mixed payments has risen by a massive 954%.”
Blended travel benefits both employees and employers alike. For employees, combining work and leisure can make trips less expensive, while for employers it can lead to greater employee satisfaction and thus retention.
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