It makes sense in the current moment for TripActions to add so-called bleisure options for road warriors using its platform. The potential gains are limited, however, because vacation-minded road warriors and their families would have a ton of other choices.
TripActions, a venture-funded corporate travel platform, plans to unveil a leisure travel product later this month for its business travel clients, Skift has learned.
A dedicated team is currently working on the leisure product, according to industry sources.
TripActions confirmed that product enhancements will be forthcoming, but disputed Skift’s characterizations of them.
“We are investing in our personal travel experience to enhance ease of use, improve the user experience, and add functionality to easily add traveling family members to an itinerary — all to make the experience the best possible for our existing business travel users,” said TripActions spokesman Greg Perotto Friday.
Perotto said enterprise clients in particular have requested such product improvements, particularly for “executive and administrative assistants who book travel on behalf of their organization’s executives, many of whom extend work trips for leisure with their spouses and/or family.”
Perotto added that the move doesn’t represent a strategy shift as the improved personal travel features would only be available to TripActions’ business clients. He added that TripActions has no plans to sell travel directly to consumers.
TripActions, based in Palo Alto, California, has always enabled employees of its business travel clients to book leisure travel by toggling from a “business trip” to “personal trip,” and to pay for it with a personal credit card after searching for flights, hotels, cars and trains. These sorts of trips are currently an option, and will continue to be available, for corporations that want to enable their employees to books such non-business trips.
The company, which has raised $1.1 billion in total funding, according to Crunchbase, including $125 million in financing in June, clearly intends to invest in improvements both to its leisure and core business travel offerings.
It’s common for travel agencies to offer both corporate and leisure travel services, although usually this is carried out by different divisions within an agency.
In late March, TripActions generated unfavorable headlines when CEO Ariel Cohen informed some 100 employees over a Zoom call that the company would lay them off. Ultimately, some 275 workers felt that ax at that time.
With travel — and particularly business travel —facing an uneven recovery, many companies are looking to transform their businesses.
Leisure travel could be an incremental revenue stream for TripActions. There are good reasons the company apparently does not intend to market direct to consumers and compete with major players because that playing field would be daunting to break into.
Said Perotto: “To confirm, there is no change in our strategy; users must be part of an organization that is a customer of TripActions to use our platform, and TripActions has no plans to launch or sell direct to the consumer or leisure travel market.”
UPDATED:This story has been updated to include TripActions’ take on its upcoming new features.
CORRECTION: This story was corrected to remove a reference to the features’ purported product name, Lemonade, and to change the number of March layoffs to 275.
Photo credit: TripActions in unveiling a leisure travel offering for business clients. Song_about_summer / Adobe