This website’s focus is the millennial solo business traveller, also known as bleisure traveller. This person is an aspiring businessman or woman who is looking to get ahead but also seeks to enjoy life. He or she is not a workaholic, as he understands the need for a work/life balance but at the same time works hard to build a career.
The Solo Millennial Bleisure Traveller
A 2014 report by Bridgestreet calls this kind of business traveller the “Bleisure Traveller”. The millennial business person makes the most of each travel opportunity instead of jumping on the first available plane/train back home.
He/she relishes the opportunity to discover a new city and makes every effort to stay on after a business trip. These trips will last for at least a day or two, or if possible, a long weekend.
The bleisure traveller and the employer understand that staying on after a business trip helps to unwind following often stressful business meetings. The flexibility to stay on also creates a stronger bond and loyalty between employee and employer.
The Definition of the Millennial Bleisure Traveller
The millennial bleisure traveller (unless he/she works for Goldman Sachs) stays in hotels with a budget of £50-150/night, plus an extra £35/day for food allowance. The budget for short haul flights often only allows Ryanair, Easyjet and BA or equivalent in each geographic region.
The millennial business traveller uses frequent flyer programs and is also a member of at least one or two hotel loyalty programs.
He or she also pays using hotel or airline credit cards to take advantage of opportunities to accumulate free flights or rooms, provided by frequent business trips. These points will then pay for extended stays during bleisure holidays.
The millennial business traveller has a budget of about £70-100/meeting for two for client meetings and entertainment.
The bleisure traveller also often:
- rents a car at the destination, as part of the business trip or for the extended weekend trip.
- takes a taxi/uber to the airport.
- might look for cafes, restaurants or bars with free wifi to do work at the destination.
- seeks to use co-working locations or will choose to work in the hotel lobby, by the pool or in the bar.
Solaris Traveller: An Expert in Bleisure Travel
I’ve been doing this kind of bleisure travelling for nearly seven years. It has worked out really well and I love this lifestyle! Watch this short video to see what I did in France after a recent business trip to Toulouse. After that, read below the video to find out why I love being a bleisure traveller and how I’ve become one.
The Story of Solaris Traveller
I used to work in the hospitality industry as a receptionist and barman for the Holiday Inn Express and Ibis chains at various locations in Europe. During those years I learned what travellers were interested in and also gained an insight into the hospitality industry. I also learned how business people were travelling and decided how I would do it differently.
Fast forward a few years and I graduated from Napier University in Edinburgh with a journalism degree. I got a job at AFP, the French News Agency in Budapest which involved some domestic travel in Hungary. My next job was with ICIS, a price reporting company in London. Here I had to travel quite frequently to far flung places.
Doing It Differently
But what I did differently is that whenever I travelled I always took a few days off before or after the conference. This way I wasn’t only working but also enjoying the sights and scenery.
Most companies are OK if you tag on a few days as holiday, so I never understand why most business travellers only stay in the hotel and then dash off to the airport when business is done. Of course, a lot of them are worried about crime, being mugged and so on – which are completely silly things to worry about! I’ve never been attacked or anything in 16 years of travelling!
Also, many business people have families at home so they would like to spend time with them instead of hanging out in a beautiful town. This is why I think most bleisure travel is done by millennials as they have the time and the disposable income to tag on a couple of extra days after a business trip.
Thanks to my employer I can work remotely and take holidays before or after almost every business trip. I can also work in any location around the world using my laptop. Yet, I am on a company’s payroll, doing a full time job. So I want to tell others on this blog how it is possible to be a travel blogger without giving up their jobs.
That’s why I’ve decided to set this website up to educate novice travellers how to combine business and leisure to make it bleisure! It is not difficult at all and you will soon notice that it improves your work performance.
Going for a long walk in town after a busy day in a foreign location can help you switch off! It can also work for companies: it improves employee loyalty to the firm. So instead of discouraging it, this should be encouraged on both sides. At the end of the day combining work with leisure always pays dividends. No wonder you see these quirky offices with all the fun and games at Google, Apple and Facebook. So just open up and enjoy business travel a bit more!
Solaris Traveller stands for this: most business travellers travel alone (solo) and they do it in the solar system. So I have combined my love for the solar system and solo business travel and came up with the name Solaris Traveller.
By profession I have been a journalist since 2008. I hold a Bachelor of Arts, honours degree in journalism from Edinburgh Napier University.
My work has been featured by travelmag.co.uk, traveldudes.org, Agence France-Presse, Global Journalist magazine, the Estrella de Arica daily in Chile, Nepszabadsag Travel in Hungary and many international titles in London.
I have also been interviewed by NPR Radio in the US and France24 in Paris whilst reporting from the Kolontar chemical disaster. In addition, my previous blog featured in an interview in French magazine Marianne.
I also have a passion for rail travel and so I was also editor of two regional railway related websites in Sussex between 2015-2017. One of them was South Coast Mainline and the other was Saint Leonards and Hastings Rail Improvement Programme, with the aim of bringing faster trains to the region.
I have travelled extensively in Europe, South America, Morocco, Australia, Asia and the United States as well as Canada.
I have been travelling since I was 11 years old. My first trip took me to the neighbouring town to the spa. My father wouldn’t take me there so I sneaked out with my best friend! The punishment duly followed – but I became addicted and have been travelling ever since.
A couple of years later I dragged my friend along to Budapest – again not telling anyone. We both lived in a small village and Budapest was 200 kilometers away. My friend’s father forbade him to see me for a few weeks after this trip but my father was OK. I guess he figured he couldn’t stop me anyway!
It took another three or four years before I went abroad on my own. I saved some money and bought a train ticket to the Croatian seaside. I loved every minute!
Since then I’ve travelled far and wide and thanks to my work I’ve seen some truly beautiful places!
While I was a reporter at AFP I had a press pass for the Hungarian Parliament where I was regularly briefed (along with other journalists) by the Prime Minister and other important officials about policies, laws and current affairs. I also paid regular visits to the various ministries and embassies as well as cultural organizations where I represented Agence France-Presse, a leading global news organization.
For the past six years I’ve been producing global market reports on fertilizers, petrochemicals and feed additives. Speed, accuracy and a reputation for intelligent, sensitive reporting are the ingredients that have made my reports respected by leading company executives engaged in the day-to-day business of buying, selling and trading commodities.
Using Twitter, Linkedin and Facebook I’ve been monitoring market developments and competitor activity. In addition, I’ve kept a close eye on agricultural commodity developments, mining and other industries and how this impacts world trade, shipping, demand and prices.
In my free time I am also the webmaster of the St Leonards and Hastings Rail Improvement Programme website and the southcoastmainline.com website, both railway related.
Janos Gal Article Portfolio
I wrote these two articles below as Skyscanner Elite’s contributor influencer.
I have also created various youtube videos during my travels.
This one below has won an award by the Spanish Tourism Board:
— Janos Gal (@galjanos1984) June 15, 2017
The below articles are interviews I created with famous travellers:
Simon Reeve’s Travel Bucket List
An interview with Simon Reeve about where he is planning to travel.
High Altitude Advice by Masha Gordon
Masha Gordon gives advice on how to climb high altitude mountains. She is one of 2016’s Explorer’s Grand Slam champions.
Insight by Melvin Bocher, CEO, Traveldudes
An interview with Melvin about his success in travel blogging.
The Ganges River vs Single Use Plastic
An interview with Spike Reid after his successful paddle boarding trip down the Ganges River.
A Helping Hand From Uganda Marathon
A report about Uganda Marathon, a charitable organisation that helps Uganda’s poor and uneducated.
Articles Related to Business & Politics
I’ve written about the below while working as a foreign correspondent and market analyst.
Georg Habsburg from Red Cross Hungary (grandson of Emperor Charles I of Austro-Hungary): I interviewed him for various projects including the Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt donation to the Kolontar Disaster Fund.
Sandor Fazekas, Agriculture Minister of Hungary: Article about Kolontar disaster and its immediate aftermath.
Hungarian Minister of Economy: Various interviews about a number of subjects such as Hungary’s IMF loans, credit ratings and economic outlook.
Dunja Mijatovic, head of Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe: Interviewed her about the press crackdown in Europe in 2010.
Jiansheng Ding, CEO of Wanhua Industrial Group: Interview about the company’s global plans and outlook. Wanhua is the second largest isocyanate producer in the world.
Zsolt Petho, CEO of TVK, a major Hungarian chemical plant owned by MOL: interview about company’s future plans and growth.
Alistair Steel, Executive Director of Euro Chlor – interview about the European chlor-alkali industry’s future outlook. Euro Chlor represents the European chlor-alkali industry.
Damien Perriman, Vice President of Genomatica, a biotechnology company developing renewable petrochemical feedstock.
Tim Staub, Vice President of Business Development at Green Biologics: interview about renewable petrochemicals.
Captain Philip Haslam, Chief of Staff for EU NAVFOR – A special Insight about piracy off the coast of Ethiopia and Somalia and its effect on global petrochemical shipping. An analysis about the increasing cost of piracy premiums and how this is impacting shippers.
Fazilet Cinaralp, the Secretary General of the European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers’ Association (ETRMA) – special feature about changing tyre labelling legislation in Europe.
The Falklands Conflict and the Argentine Media
A book about the crisis and how it was reported by the Argentine press.
Changing Global Sulphur Supply Trends
A report about changing sulphur supply trends.
Migrant Tide Tests Hungary’s Hospitality
Reporting from Hungary’s razor wire fence.
Hungary village evacuated as new toxic flood ‘likely’
Reporting from the Kolontar toxic flood.
Human Negligence – Toxic Sludge Boss Arrested
Reporting from the Kolontar toxic flood.
How sustainable are bio-based chemicals
A report about bio-based chemistry and sustainability.
In Hungary a shift to the right stifles press freedom
A report about Hungary’s press freedom issues.
In Cuba Words Can Captivate You
A report about Cuban Press Freedom.
Quoted in the Press
Wanhua Group Website
The firm used me as a reference on their global website. The company is the third largest polyurethane producer in the world.
Janos Gal’s Travel Videos
A collection of my videos shot on my iphone 5s.