Choosing Thailand, one of the most visited countries globally, as a business destination could be the best choice you can ever make. No matter how right the choice of a business trip can be, you can tip it over the table with a wrong plan.
Thailand is one of the cheapest and friendliest destinations in the world. You will be required to fill a Thailand Visa application form 2020. On visiting, you would be given a temporary visa that lasts two weeks. Businesses have chosen the country to close business deals mostly because of the little cost they may incur.
Like most culturally rich backgrounds, there are unwritten social and business rules related to any trip to Thailand, especially Bangkok. You can extend or even mess up your whole business trip if you ignore these norms.
For example, “Let’s get this over with” is a common sentence typical of most western business folks. The haste to close a business deal and move on to the next looks like the way things should be.
However, in Thai business culture, you need to learn a lot of patience as socializing and establishing a relationship comes first before a bunch of signed papers. The Thais believe working with people they know is safer than the ones you don’t know. Moreover, Thais generally perceive a hasty person as weak.
As it is in Thailand, you should read these points ‘patiently’ and thoroughly prepare for that business trip that you may never forget.
Know your Budget
Whether the company is paying for the trip or not, working with budgets will save you a lot of embarrassment. An airport taxi is excellent and serene. However, it costs more than buses and trains. Knowing your budget will help you choose wisely.
Book a Hotel
As logical as this step may be, many businesspeople make it the last on their list. Sometimes, they arrive in Thailand before making bookings. Their excuse has always been, ‘I want to see with my own eyes where I will be staying.’
This realm may not be necessary. Just make a reservation in a hotel with excellent ratings. A hotel that has done an online tour of their accommodations is more reasonable, though.
Get a Local currency
If you know you will need local service, get local currencies (Thai Bhat) as soon as possible. Offering a food vendor, a dollar bill does not count as a tip in Thailand.
ATM’s with international withdrawal are everywhere in the nation’s capital of Bangkok. Airports often have money exchanging booths.
Select a City and a Venue
It would be sheer foolishness to go for a business trip in a city or venue without weighing your options. You must remember that the type of meeting is dependent on the kind of venue. Also, the forum selected must be easily accessible for every participant.
You may consider checking every member of your business into the same hotel. If you choose Bangkok as a destination, and the people attending the business meetings are not in the same hotel, you may use the sky train route to pick everyone. The train passes through every path of the city.
Learn about Thailand
If you are conducting the business meeting or are just an attendee, learning about Thailand is not negotiable. There are a lot of things you can gain in your business by just ‘culture-blending.’
Like many countries, you need to learn about Thailand before making a trip. Twice a day, the national anthem is broadcasted, and everyone is to halt or face legal consequences.
Light clothing is advisable, but it is also the norm in Thailand because of the humid and hot weather of the region.
If your business has some relationship with the nation’s politics, religions and policies, tread carefully. It is a turn off if you talk disrespectfully about the monarchy or Buddha.
No one expects you to be a hundred percent polite or knowledgeable of the Thai way. However, knowing the do’s and don’ts of the Thai’s culture will surely give you an edge over business competitors.
For example, many body languages or gestures that the western culture accepts, as usual, are disrespectful in Thai culture. Don’t just offer a handshake. Offer a ‘wai’ by putting your palms together and bending slightly. Do not provide a business card with a left hand. Also, do not point at people or sacred objects with your index finger.
You should know that conservative dresses are the nicest in business meetings. ‘A little skin’ is a great deal of provocation for Thais. As much as you are conservative in your wear, do not wear black clothing. Black has a lot of ties with funerals and condolences in the country.
Have a Tour Guide
Suppose your company offers a tour of the city or a building as a bonus, request for a guide. A guide can save you from unnecessary expenses and will keep you from getting lost.
Thailand is a place with profound culture. There is a lot of ‘don’t s.’ However, it should not be a turn-off, especially when compared to the various attractions and tourist sites Thailand has to offer.