Japan is a complex cocktail that can seductive and overwhelming all the same. Foreigners may find it highly intimidating at the onset, given the cultural differences, language barriers, high prices and almost terrifying technology.
Here are some expert tips from Travel 15 and business travel managers to ensure you have a smooth run on your Japanese business trip.
Purchase the Japan Rail Pass
If you’re going to commute extensively by trains, a single route journey can set you back by several hundred dollars. Buy the Japan Rail Pass in advance and save money on your business trips within the four biggest islands of the country. You can pick from the Green Pass (for the superior class) or the Ordinary Pass (for economy class). If you’re travelling in a group, you may want to invest in the less crowded Green Pass cars.
Since the chances of you understanding Japanese on your first trip are slim, download the Google Translate app to communicate quickly and effectively with your business associates. The translations will obviously not be perfect, but your hosts may still get an idea of what you’re communicating. Also, ensure that you carry your hotel’s name and address written in Japanese on a piece of paper.
Gift Giving Etiquettes
Giving and receiving gifts is deeply entrenched in the Japanese way of life. It is always advisable to bring along gifts when meeting your business contacts. The gifts should convey your position within the organization. If you are right up there in the company hierarchy, your gifts must be top-notch. Gifts with corporate logos are not much appreciated in Japan.
Travelling to Japan can be both exciting and intimidating owing to the wide cultural differences and language barriers. Keep in mind basics like purchasing an easy Japan Rail travel pass, downloading the Google translation app and the essential gifting etiquettes.