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Bleisure Travel Trend Grows as Musafir Business Brings Leisure into Corporate Trips

Published by UAE Business

Musafir Business Reveals Rising Popularity and Economic Benefits of ‘Bleisure’ Tourism in the Corporate Travel Industry

According to Musafir Business, a leading corporate travel management platform, ‘bleisure’ tourism, which combines business and leisure travel, is rapidly gaining traction as a favored choice among corporate travelers. Statistics indicate that ‘bleisure’ tourism already accounts for 30-35% of the global business tourism market and is expected to be worth $500 billion (Dh2 trillion) in 2022. The trend shows no sign of slowing down, with a projected growth rate of 20% over the next decade.

Sachin Gadoya, CEO and Co-Founder of and Musafir Business, highlights the increasing popularity of ‘bleisure’ travel in the region, stating that almost 20% of corporate travelers are incorporating leisure experiences into their business trips. Projections suggest that this number will rise by an additional 15% in the coming years.

This shift in travel behavior is evident as more individuals extend their business trips by a day or two for leisure activities, and vice versa. Forecasts predict these trips will cover a wider range of destinations and have longer durations. While larger international companies are quick to embrace this trend, smaller-scale and local firms may take more time to adopt it, especially those that are not multinational corporations.

The average ticket price for corporate travel within the GCC region ranges from AED 3,500 to 4,000, and this pricing trend is expected to continue through 2024. Corporate travel during the scorching summer season is primarily outbound from the UAE. Popular business travel destinations such as Europe, the USA, and South East Asia efficiently cater to the diverse requirements of corporate globetrotters, with ticket prices ranging between AED 5,500 to 6,000 for these regions.

Growing Preference for Business and First-Class Travel Complements the Vibrant Landscape of Business Travel in UAE

The UAE’s travel scene is set to transform in Q4, as a perfect storm of factors – including enjoyable weather and a vibrant calendar of events – is poised to drive inbound travel. The region will offer various experiences, from the exciting Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to captivating art exhibitions, mega conferences, marathons, electrifying concerts, and lively beach festivals. As a hub for international companies, the UAE promises a thrilling blend of business and leisure, making it an enticing destination for people seeking a dynamic range of activities.

In addition to this, there is an evident increase in the preference for business and first-class travel, as per the evolving landscape of business travel. Musafir Business, a leading corporate travel management platform in the region, has observed a remarkable 25% increase in average corporate transaction value, surpassing pre-pandemic levels. This growth underscores the platform’s commitment to delivering elevated customer experiences, embracing digital innovation, and gaining invaluable insights into customers’ preferences.

Furthermore, Musafir Business notes that blending leisure activities into business travel provides benefits for employers, such as offsetting costs, enhancing productivity during meetings and conferences, and fostering stronger relationships between employers and employees. The value of the industry in the UAE, GCC, and MENA regions is significant, with the UAE alone having a flight spend of over AED 10 billion, a significant portion of which is attributed to business travel.

With a track record of delivering substantial savings for Middle Eastern organizations through the processing of over 600,000 transactions in 2022, Musafir Business aims to sustain its momentum in 2023, targeting approximately 1.1 million transactions, and consolidating its position as a leader in corporate travel solutions.

Overall, the growing surge of business travel and ‘bleisure’ trend is a testament to the industry’s robustness and flexibility, paving the way forward for both corporate and leisure exploration.


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