Leisure Extensions at the End of Business Trips
“The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” — St. Augustine
Michael Luongo at OutTraveler.com writes that gay business travelers should, “Pack the silk tie, but don’t forget the sleeveless tee.” Back in the days when airlines enforced a Saturday overnight stay, people seemed more inclined to extend their business travel. Personally, I always want to get home.
But they say that the gay business traveler is more likely to take “leisure extensions” at the end of a business trip. Perhaps it has something to do with the gay DINK stereotype. Who knows for sure?
At a minimum, how hard can it be to at least add a “breather” component to a business trip? “According to the National Business Travel Association, more and more business travelers are adding a leisure element to their corporate duties — and why not? If you’re going to spend 10 hours traveling from Boston to Seattle, with a layover in Chicago, and at least six of those hours on a plane with a bag of peanuts and some old magazines, you might as well have a little fun when you get there.”
“The NBTA reports that 62% of US business travelers combine leisure with duty at least one trip per year. Two-thirds of them bring family members or friends along, taking advantage of the opportunity to tour new venues.”
But what about the day-to-day of business travel? This typically is all about the accommodations. Michael Luongo continues, “Style and location drive gay business travel choices. Malcolm Lazin, executive director of Philadelphia’s Equality Forum, travels about two months each year; he says he prefers ‘hotels that tend to be more stylish, and two examples that come to mind, Kimpton and W, have certainly tried to market more towards the gay traveler.’ Lazin also stays near gay districts ‘to enjoy the restaurants and clubs that would be welcoming to the gay traveler.'”
“Kimpton’s chief operating officer, Niki Leondakis, likes to hear these things. In 2004, she says, ‘we decided we needed to target the specific customers who had given us some indications they really liked our product.’ Gay business travelers became part of Kimpton’s InTouch membership program, which sends out niche-market newsletters via e-mail.”
Do you want to have a better experience while you’re on the road? Click here for 15 Tips for a Better Business Trip. And remember; try to add a breather en route or when you get there.
Po Bronson at Time penned a commentary about Americans and their inability to relax. He believes that we have begun to prefer brief snippets of what he calls “stolen time” to the long stretches of authorized vacation. He notes, “The growth trend in travel is the half-week sneak-away built around a weekend.” Or kick back and ask the boss if you can extend a business trip.