Tips for International Business Travelers from Nikko Hotels International
TOKYO, Sept. 29 /PRNewswire / -- Business overseas can mean traveling to cultures with unfamiliar social etiquette. To help travelers prepare for overseas trips, Nikko Hotels International has gathered etiquette tips from its staff around the world. Below are some lesser-known formalities in various countries. More tips for each of these countries are available online in the Nikko Hotels newsroom, www.jalhotels.mediaroom.com.
United Arab Emirates
One rule to avoid embarrassment: "In the UAE it is considered rude to show the sole of your foot or shoe when sitting at a gathering,"
Restaurant practices are different in Mexico: "Try not to leave your credit card or tip directly on the table, because this could be seen as rude," said Marcela Cuellar, marketing manager, Hotel Nikko Mexico. "Place the card or tip into a bill holder or tip tray and hand it to a server directly."
Buy local, drink local: "Germans prefer beer from their hometowns," said Tetsuo Oyama, assistant general manager at Hotel Nikko Dusseldorf.
In China, loyalty to a business partner is often measured by the size of a gift, but be warned: "Giving a clock is considered taboo because its pronunciation is the same as the word 'end' in Chinese," said Satoshi Inoue, director of sales, Japanese Market, Hotel Nikko New Century Beijing.
As is common throughout Asia, it is very important to never do or say anything to cause your Chinese associates to "lose face." "A simple comment such as 'you didn't know that?' can cause someone to sever all relations," said Emmy Lau, public relations manager at Hotel Nikko Hongkong.
Demonstrate that you know the proper way to eat Japanese cuisine: "When you eat sushi, don't dip the rice in soy sauce, only the fish portion," said Mizuho Sumida, senior manager of public relations at Hotel Nikko Tokyo.
Exchanging business cards follows a strict etiquette that is similar to other Asian countries. Your card must be presented with both hands. "Read the card immediately and place it in front of you during the meeting," said Do Hong Minh, public relations manager for Hotel Nikko Hanoi.
It's important to be aware of certain Malaysian dress formalities: "The color yellow is reserved for royalty, so if one is attending a formal dinner with members of the royal family in attendance, it is best to avoid this color,"
About Nikko Hotels International
Nikko Hotels International is an international luxury hotel group operated by JAL Hotels Co., Ltd. (www.jalhotels.com), a subsidiary of Japan Airlines, headquartered in Tokyo. In addition to Nikko Hotels, JAL Hotels also operates Hotel JAL City, a chain of 13 mid-priced hotels in Japan for business travelers. JAL Hotels Co., Ltd. currently has 58 hotels worldwide.