Although summer is peak vacation time for most Americans, for frequent business travelers it can be a struggle to squeeze in a much-needed vacation between work trips. A survey by “La Quinta Means Business” conducted by conducted by Wakefield Research between June 28 and July 8, 2019, found that “bleisure” time may be a frequent travelers best kept secret and the key to warding off burn out.
The survey results offer insight into the distinct experience of business travel in the summer, including surviving stuffy conference rooms, being spotted in a bathing suit by coworkers, squeezing in some time for sightseeing and rushing to make it home in time for back-to-school prep.
Summertime is Bleisure Time
La Quinta’s survey tapped into the mindset of today’s business traveler during the busy summer and back-to-school months to determine how the season might impact their decision-making while on the road:
I Need a Vacation
• Under the radar: Nearly two-thirds (64%) of business travelers who have extended a trip have done so secretly for personal vacation without telling someone, including their coworkers (32%), boss (26%) and even their own partner (22%)
• New territory: More than half (51%) of these business travelers have extended their business trips to explore the destination
• Tis the sea-sun: For 56% of business travelers, summer is the best time to extend a business trip for a personal vacation
• Vacation daze: On average, business travelers extended a trip for three days, with 42% of business travelers extending three to five days
• Recharge your batteries: Nearly 3 in 10 (29%) business travelers have skipped out on a meeting or work event to take a nap or do something restful while on a business trip
• It’s getting hot in here: Sixty-five percent of career commuters say that being stuck in a conference room with no air conditioning during a summer business trip would be worse than having to wear a swimsuit in front of colleagues (35%)
• Sweat suit: Eighty-two percent of male business travelers are more likely to pack extra clothing on a summer business trip than they would for another season
• Look cool, feel cool: Given a choice between dressing well and dressing comfortably, business travelers would rather look cool (53%) than feel cool (47%) on a summer business trip
• A cold one: Nearly three in four (74%) business travelers have skipped a work event while on a business trip, 31% of whom did something social with friends instead such as go to a bar or restaurant
On the Home Front
• Me time: Forty-three percent of business travelers with children in school have extended a business trip by one to two days specifically to take time for themselves
• There in spirit: Nearly all business travelers (95%) with school-age kids miss some school-related activities due to business travel; three in four (75%) business travelers miss activities frequently
• Homework helper: While on a business trip, 69% of business travelers stay connected with their children when school is in session to make sure they get their homework done
• Pur-ferred travel companion: Three in ten (30%) business travelers with kids and pets say they would prefer to travel with their pet and leave the kids at home
La Quinta by Wyndham’s ongoing “La Quinta Means Business” survey series aims to uncover the realities of business travel and the behaviors and quirks that road warriors exhibit as a result in order to better help them succeed while on the road with the signature amenities they need, including free high-speed Wi-Fi, free breakfast, 24/7 coffee and tea, signature comfortable bedding, modern fitness centers, social gathering spaces, and spacious in-room work areas with charging stations.
The survey was conducted by email invitation and an online survey among 1,000 U.S. business travelers ages 35–54, defined as those traveling for business 10-plus times per year.