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Business travel seeing the world and enjoying great food, all on the company’s dime sounds great, right? But how does it compare Business vs Leisure Travel on stress, health being, family, children and partner?

Business vs Leisure Travel
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Dieter Hovorka

CTO, Co-founder, Skillz Middle East

Remember when you fill your immigration form? The box you check on your customs declaration is an Indicator of much more than whether you’ll be spending your trip in meetings or by the pool. Frequent travel can affect your health and happiness, and It makes a big difference whether you are jet setting for work or for leisure.

The infographic compares what American companies spend on travel and American people when they travel in private. While companies are spending more on domestic travel (on average $ 949 by an employee), the people spend more on international travel, on average $3251.

For the airline industry business travelers accounts for only 12% of their passengers, while making them shine with more than 75% of their revenue. 

While vacationers are more likely to be flexible if it means saving money, business travelers are more likely to book the quickest or most convenient flight even if it means paying much more.

Business and leisure travel impact your habits differently because it forces you out of your routine, travel can have a big impact on your daily habits regarding health and wellness. While business and leisure travel are similar in this regard, their overall effects stack up differently.

Frequency and Duration

It is clear that business travels are most of the cases shorter and more frequent which makes it difficult for the traveler to adjust their body and their daily routine. Vacation tend to be longer and less frequent. People take more time to prepare and also after to adjust.

Freedom and Choice

Business travelers have rarely the luxury of picking where they travel to, which kind of facilities will be available at their destination or what their schedule will look like. Vacationers can have much more control over their trip in this regard.

All these factors influence the extent to which both negative and positive effects of travel are felt.

Diet and Exercise

Whether you’re on vacation or a business trip, chances are you’ll come back a few pounds heavier. 86% of travelers reported gaining 3 pounds every two weeks spent away from home. The question comes to our mind,  why we gain weight when we travel?

  • New surroundings can drive us to seek unhealthy comfort foods or try new extravagant dishes.
  • Hotels without kitchens make it hard to stock up on healthy foods or cook for yourself.
  • Airplane food and hotel buffets are often high in salt. fat. and sugar.
  • Another impact is the long periods of Inactivity during transportation.
  • 16% of business travelers say they drink more on business trips than at home. Leisure travelers arc twice as likely to get dangerously drunk during vacation than at home.
  • Most travelers mention that they tend to consume alcohol with every meal.

But our questions comes to our mind,  health-conscious is it easier to have a healthy vacation than a healthy business trip?

Stress Levels Business vs Leisure Travel

There is no doubt, air travel is impacting our health and wellbeing the most, the more experienced travelers manage to reduce stress.

  • 44% of professionals are more likely to indulge in unhealthy foods during business trips than while at home, more than 66% of American vacationers say they mostly manage to eat healthy while traveling.
  • 54% of business travelers say they are less likely to exercise on a work trip than at home, while only 53% of Americans say they often or always exercise while vacationing.
  • 65% of business travelers regularly pack exercise gear that they don’t end up using, compared to 13% of Americans have taken a vacation with the goal of improving their diet and fitness.How Travel Impacts Your tress levels? Between time changes and unfamiliar environments, travel Is full of stressors. And studies about the impact of business travel on stress prove this. Yet magically, leisure travel seems to have an overall positive effect on stress levels, both personally and interpersonally.
  • 75% of employees who regularly travel internationally reported high or very high stress associated with business trips.

The common stress factors are for example for 43% of the uncertainty if they can expense according to costs or they need to be covered from their own pocket. Typical 38% of travelers reported they can not enjoy the weekend before a business trip. Also, 36% worry about packing the rights things. A common element is sleeping, 36% say they have difficulties to sleep during a business trip. Family, children, and partners are commonly seen as stress factors.

Studies show that a 4·day vacation can significantly reduce perceived stress and improve well-being for as long as 30 days.

Why vacations relieve stress?

TIME SLOWS DOWN: Studies show that our perception of time slows when we encounter new and exhilarating experiences.

WE SLEEP IN: 70% of people use vacation as a way to catch up on sleep.

WE ARE NICER: Studies show that people are more outgoing, agreeable, conscientious, and open to new experiences while on vacation.

SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO: Studies show that even the process of planning a vacation can make us happier.Women who take at least 2 vacations a year are more likely to feel happy in their marriages than those who take just one vacation every other year. 86% of adults say their happiest childhood memory is a family vacation.


It turns out that business vs leisure travel have differing effects on personal health and well-being, even though in both cases travel disrupts our daily routines. On the other hand, taking a four-day vacation can remedy stress and even improve wellbeing for up to 30 days. Check out the infographic from for more details.

Business vs Leisure Travel Infographic

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