Your First Business Trip to India – Things You Must Know for a Comfortable Stay
If you’re having your first business trip to India in the following months, you should know that there are certain tips that will help you make the most out of it, enjoy a really good time and have just enough time to also visit the stunning beauty of this destination. We all know it by now that India has one of the fastest-developing start-up hubs around the world, so you should expect to take several trips there in the following years. So, apply India Visa now and enjoy the stunning destination filled with business opportunities.
Learn and Follow the Basics
When travelling to India, people fear, for some reasons, getting a series of digestive issues. The “Delhi Belly” is a common digestive issue caused by a common type of bacteria. The usual symptoms are stomach cramps and other unpleasant symptoms. However, to avoid such issues, follow the pieces of advice below.
· Avoid drinking tap water. Advisable would be to only drink bottled water and to always check if the cap is sealed. Try to also brush your teeth with bottled water as well.
· Avoid drinking unfiltered water or anything else that has been prepared with unfiltered water.
· When eating fruits, make sure that you peel your own and don’t buy already-peeled fruits.
· Your Indian business partners will certainly have some suggestions of restaurants where to eat so try to follow their advice.
For a great time in India, make sure that you check if there will be any sort of holidays during your trip, and obviously, check for monsoon season as well.
Customs and Greetings
When it comes to gestures considered to be rude in India, there are a few, and you want to get to know those, as you don’t want to insult your business partners or the locals. For starters, you should never touch someone on the head nor should you touch them with your left hand. It’s considered to be disrespectful and dirty.
Never point directly at people and objects and avoid crossing your legs in other’s general direction so the bottom of your feet shows.
In greetings, you should know that handshakes are not part of their culture, like in the Western world. In fact, men only shake hands with men and women only with their gender peers. Representatives of opposite sexes NEVER touch each other.
The standard greeting in the Indian culture is “Namaste”. When you say the word, make sure that you press your palms together, in a gesture similar to the one when you’re praying. A slight nob and bond and also part of Indian standard greetings. Being a standard greeting, you can use it in all situations and circumstances.
In big cities in India, like Mumbai, the population is more westernized, especially in those fast-developing business hubs and you may be greeted with the standards western greeting, a handshake, regardless of your hosts’ gender.
However, you should remember that you have to greet the oldest individual in a group first and you address them by using their title. If you’re uncertain of their title, “Madam” or “Sir” will always work. Unless you’re told so, don’t call people by their first names, as it is considered to be rude.
Advisable would be to hand your business card when first meeting your business partners. Always hand it with your right hand and put those received away respectfully. For a successful first meeting with your business partners, you always have to wear formal attire. This, of course, unless you are meeting with young start-up owns in less formal industries, like tech and engineering.
In meetings, you have to avoid high-pressure strategies and negotiations. And learn the difference between “yes” and “no”. In Indian culture, there is an aversion for the word “no”, so instead of it, business people always use the word “yes”, meaning that they fully understand what you’re saying, not that they agree with you.
At business dinner parties, you have to follow some simple tips that will make your stay more comfortable and will help you avoid embarrassing situations.
· Don’t seat yourself at whatever seat you prefer, but rather wait to be seated by somebody else.
· Pay attention to other’s manner at the table. In big cities, you will have a fork and spoon at the table. You usually eat by pushing the food in your spoon by using the fork. In the countryside, you will have to eat with your bare hands. But remember that you have to eat with your right hand, no matter which your dominating hand is.
· Never eat everything on your plate. If you eat everything on your plate, you simply let everybody know that you’re still hungry. In Indian culture, a plate with a little food on it signals a full eater.
These are some of the most important customs that you have to remember during your first business trip to India. But for a pleasant stay, we have some more!
Get all the Necessary Vaccinations
Before your departure, make sure that you visit your doctor’s office and let them know about your future business trip. They will be able to advise you vaccination-wise and will recommend a set of shots that you have to take, depending on the areas that you’ll be visiting.
Make sure that you are up-to-date with your shots before your trip. Measles, Mumps, Rubella, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot will be mandatory.
For extra safety, you have to get your Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid Fever, Cholera, Malaria, Japanese Encephalitis and several other vaccinations will be necessary, just for extra safety.
Don’t Forget Your Business Visa
With approximately 4 weeks previous to your departure date or even earlier, if possible, you have to get your business visa for India. Your employer will have to prove your employment by offering all the necessary documentation, including a reference. Go to your local Indian Consulate with the documentation as well as a valid passport.
Only after you get your business visa approved, you can go ahead and purchase your plane tickets.
Pack for the Expected Weather
Yes, you have to plan your luggage ahead and make sure that you bring clothing for the expected weather, not for the weather you would love to enjoy. Remember, if your meetings will be formal, bring formal attire. But you want to make sure that you also bring the necessary devices and supplies. For instance, you will need a phone that works in the local networks here, but this will most likely be supplied by your employer. Copies of your itinerary, passport, with the visa page as well, any medication that you need and documentation for it as well.
These are some ways in which you can always make your first trip to India easier and more successful. Make sure that you get a good grip on the local customs and traditions, get to know what it’s considered to be rude or not and you should be just fine. You have to pay increased attention in the process of getting your Visa approved, so make sure that you collaborate with a reliable company specialised in similar matters.