business tip: The best way to plan a business trip to China
all the major international airports in China, airlines after
airlines are discharging business people from all over the world
as China continues to
engage the world's economy. If you happen to be planning your
first business trip to China, why not check through some of the
helpful tips we have for you.
well before travel
Ensure you have applied for a visa to travel to China (Read Visa
Change plenty of Reminbi notes as credit cards and US dollars
are not widely accepted
3. Reserve hotel rooms and domestic
golden travel peak
periods in China.
4. Prepare a small medical kit as you may fall sick from the
local food or from too much hectic travel
5. Have a handy English to Chinese phrase book as most Chinese
do not speak nor understand English (Check our basic
6. Get a useful business guide on insider guide to Chinese
7. Prepare mentally that some parts of China will be crowded,
nosiy and dirty
plan well ahead.
planning any kind of travel on the three golden weeks in China;
Two weeks during Chinese New Year (Likely to be late January
or early February each year)
2. The first week of May (May day holidays)
3. First week of October (National Day holidays)
are weeks where every Chinese would also be on holidays. This
create an incredible crush on air, land and sea transport systems
as well as hotels, restaurants and tourist sights. Always plan
for trips before or after the golden weeks and never during,
unless you don't mind being crushed by millions of Chinese on
holiday as well.
you are travelling to a particular city, do check that there
is no major trade convention or exhibition going on in that city.
If you happen to travel during a major event, chances are, you
not be able to get a hotel room or a plane ticket. Of course,
if you are travelling specially for that major event, than you
will still need to go but do book early and be prepared for jacked
up hotel prices.
of these major Chinese conventions and exhibitions include the
annual Import-Export Fair in Canton, Fashion Fair in Dalian,
International Investment Fair in Xiamen, World Business Convention
in Shanghai, Enterprise IT Fair in Beijing etc.
exhibition and trade fairs would be a good place to pick
up new business contacts, suppliers and customers.
businessmen are very hospitable and most of the time, they will
meeting and picking you up from the airport if you have prior
arrangements with your Chinese business counterparts. Most major
Chinese airports are at least one hour or more from the city
wise to advize your flight details and arrival time way before
you travel so that your Chinese counterpart can make early arrangements.
there are no one picking you up from the airport, then make sure
you have your hotel or the business address of your business
contacts readily available and preferably written in Chinese
characters before arriving in China.
you have not booked a hotel, then approach the travel desk of
the airport and book directly at the travel desk. Prices are
usually better than walk-in rate and there is usually a complimentary
ride to the hotel.
just join the taxi line and show the taxi driver your hotel name
and address, preferably again in Chinese characters. Taxis are
meter regulated and taxi drivers are generally not out to cheat
by taking longer routes.
touts may approach you at the airport or your hotel. Avoid these
touts at all cost.
your time with your Chinese business counterpart
your time wisely if you are meeting your Chinese business contacts
or visiting business premises. Business discussions in China
tend to be at a slower pace than what we are used to and often
long lunches and dinners are part and parcel of a business discussion.
plan for twice as long as what you may normally expect that event
to last. If the business premise is not in town, be prepared
for a few hours of driving as it would not be surprising if the
nearest industrial park or city is a few hours drive away.
your Chinese counterpart do not have an in-house translater but
depends on a part-time translator, be prepared for atrocious
translation and lost messages. Try to bring your own translator
or hire a qualified translator through one of the better business
agencies in China.
work entertainment is considered part of the Chinese business
and it would be rude to turn it down. Be prepared to return to
your hotel late every night with long dinner, heavy drinking
and a dose of karaoke singing thrown in.
you would like to learn more about Chinese business culture or
way of life, please check out this China
more information about Chinese way of life and to prevent cultural
shock, check out this interesting China
Book. Or email
us for further information.