Nowadays it is a common sight to see people travelling from country to another for business purposes. As India is a land with wide variety of business opportunities, many people from other countries visit India. A business trip is usually a stressful one because not only one has to adjust to the new climate, food etc in India but also your mind will be fully occupied with business thoughts. You can reduce the tension a lot if you plan it properly.
Arrive in advance
Book your flight tickets in such a way so that you reach India at least 1 or 2 days before your business meeting so that you can adjust to the Indian climate and keep your body and mind fresh before the meeting starts. You will definitely need a day of rest if you are travelling from far way countries like US, you will have Jetlag because of the time difference.
Make prior reservations in Hotel
Once the travel dates are confirmed, see if the company you are visiting are providing accommodation for you.If not, book a star hotel for the entire duration of the stay.If you are planning to visit only one company, then book the hotel which is near to the company.Otherwise book the hotel located in the center of the city so that you can easily go to all places.
Make sure that the hotel room has all the basic facilities like phone,Internet,Laundry,refrigerator,microwave oven etc as you will need them definitely.
Pack a light baggage
Usually the business travel lasts for few days to maximum couple of weeks. So pack only the minimum clothes and 1 or 2 business suites. As the Indian climate is very hot, you need not care about taking cloves, jackets, sweaters etc. Make sure you pack the following:
Take medical vaccinations
Consult with your doctor and take all the precautionary vaccinations even if you travel only for a week. Get suggestion from him about a good insect repeller cream and buy that also as mosquitoes and other insects are common in India.
Don’t forget to bring with you a bunch of business cards and keep it always with you as you need to exchange it with almost all the business people you are meeting.
Reception at the airport
If your hotel does not provide a complimentary pick up from the airport, request them to send a vehicle with a driver. Otherwise engage a prepaid taxi from the airport to the hotel. Don’t board in unknown taxis.
Dress to wear
The formal wear of Indian men are full sleeve shirts, pants, tie(optional) and formal shoes. You can also follow the same.Don’t wear t-shirts or shorts.
Women wear salwar kameez or saris. You can wear formal shirt and pant.
Don’t plan too many meetings on a single day as it will make you exhausted and reduce the energy level.Also don’t plan for a meeting very early as it is difficult for people to come amidst heavy traffic. Even though Indians may not be punctual always, you try your best to be always on time.
Communication with Indian people
While communications with Indians, always address their names with the titles Mr., Mrs. or Ms. Don’t handshake with a woman unless it is initiated by her.Hugging each other to share happiness is also not allowed in India.
Food and Drink
You have to be very careful with your food especially on a business trip as any small problem in your health will affect your business. Drink only distilled or mineral water.Also make sure that the water bottle is in fully sealed condition.Don’t drink any other water.
Eat only hot and freshly cooked food. Avoid eating spicy and oily food. If Indian food does not suit you, eat bread with milk as they will be always available. Don’t eat the already cut vegetables and fruits.Take the fruit,wash it completely,peel it and then eat it.
Reserve a day for site seeing
Don’t forget to reserve a day or two for local sight seeing as you would not visiting the place often.Engage a taxi by getting the help from your hotel and see all the main attractions in the city you visit. While walking on main roads, please see the vehicles coming in both directions before crossing the road. In India pedestrians are not given the same importance as in western countries and traffic violations are very common. Also there may not be a pedestrian side walk in majority of the roads and you have to walk near one end of the road.
Have a successful trip ahead !!!