International Business Travel
Before you set up an international business in a different country, it is highly recommended that you visit these countries first. International business travel allows you to examine the markets where you are considering selling your products before you make any transactions. It also offers you an excellent opportunity to test out the marketability of your product as well as get acquainted with the different culture of the country.
Many foreign markets are vastly different from the United States. And it is only through international business travel that you can gain the all-important knowledge of the different cultural nuances which can affect the design, packaging, or advertising of your product.
In addition, traveling abroad for business purposes enables you to locate and cultivate new customers, not to mention strengthen relationships and communication with your foreign representatives.
Before you leave your home country, you need proper documentation. The requirements for international business travel include current passport, visas from certain host countries, and in some instances, vaccination records.
If you are bringing with you a product for sampling or demonstration purposes, then get an ATA (Admission Temporaire) carnet. This is a standardized document for international customs that is used to obtain duty-free temporary admission of certain goods into the countries that are signatories to the ATA Convention.
Getting these documents should take around six to eight weeks. Be advised that foreign customs vary from country to country so it is a good idea to learn in advance what the regulations are in the country you are applying for.
Plan Your Itinerary
International business travel agents would prove a great help when it comes to arranging transportation and hotel reservations. In addition to helping you with your travel options, they can also plan your itinerary for you.
International business travel agents are usually very savvy about finding the best travel rates. They also explain which countries require visas and which don’t; which hotels have the best rates and which locations have the best accommodations. And best of all, their assistance and expertise may be free since travel agents’ fees are paid by the hotels, airlines, and other carriers.
Having a well-planned itinerary while on an international business travel is the best possible chance you have of making use of your time abroad. This is especially true if you are very concerned about the costs of international business travel. Some business people mistakenly believe that they can save travel dollars by squeezing as many activities into their schedule as they can. However, this may well turn out to be counterproductive. So it is better to have two or three definite appointments, confirmed well in advance and spaced comfortably throughout the day, than to go about rushing from one meeting to another.