How to make ‘bleisure’ work for your conference

Mixing business with leisure – or ‘bleisure’ – is a growing trend for business travellers. If you’re inviting people from out of town to attend a meeting, conference or event here are a few ways to introduce a ‘bleisure’ angle.

Events running across a day or two can mean a lot of time away from both the office and home for those attending. To make the most of these mini trips, many workers are embracing ‘bleisure’. This simply means adding some leisure activities onto a business trip.

Here’s how you can make your future events bleisure-friendly.

Shaking Hands at Reception

Run events close to weekends
To make it easy for attendees to extend their stay and make the most of the city they’re visiting, hold events on either a Friday or Monday. This allows them to use the weekend for leisure without having to take any extra time off work.

Secure deals
If you’ve got a number of people attending your event, it might be worth speaking with local hotels and restaurants to see if you can secure deals for attendees. It could be simply a 10% discount on the bill or a free glass of bubbly on arrival. With hotels, see if you can get your attendees free upgrades or a discounted spa treatment.

Or you could book a few tables at some of the best restaurants in town and offer the booking to your guests.

Meeting at a Restaurant

Make them family-friendly
Not all business travellers travel alone. For those embracing bleisure, they may well bring their family along with them so delegates’ partners and children can take advantage of the trip while they attend the event.

Speak with the hotels you’re using to see if they’ve got family rooms available. And invite family members to come to lunch sessions at the venue.

Provide local guides
While there are endless travel websites offering suggestions of what to do and where to go, there’s nothing like a bit of local knowledge. Make sure that staff at the venue, and even those running the meeting, have a few suggestions for attendees.

A really nice idea is a mini-tour of the local area at the lunch break – you’d be amazed by what you can see in an hour.

Organise group trips
And you could go a step further by organising tour guides for free time. Or if a number of people are travelling alone, why not organise a trip for them all to a local restaurant or bar? You can do this on the evenings or even at weekends.

They can act as networking sessions while also helping attendees make the most of their visit to your event. It’ll mean they leave on a positive note and will more likely to return the following year.


Posted by Sara Cano


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