Southeast Asia’s tiny city-state Singapore has carved a niche of its own in terms of business travel. It has transformed from a bland stopover in the past to a key business destination today. This Southeast Asian economic powerhouse is presently home to many industries such as tourism, oil and gas, trading, banking and shipping, attracting scores of people from the corporate world. If Singapore is your next destination, follow these tips to make your business trip successful.
Staying connected is a must for business travelers. If you travel frequently or plan a long stay get hold of a local SIM card. It’s cheap and easily available. You will need to furnish your passport for the purchase. Internet access is another cheapest and best way to remain connected. Register at Wireless@SG with a smartphone or online. This free Internet service is available city-wide. Public telephone booths can also be used during emergency for making local and international calls.
Mass Rapid Transport or MRT is convenient and fastest. Avoid rush hour by taking the MRT or else for driving you need extra time. Punctuality is the key for business meetings. You can also hire easily and cheaply available taxis and Ubers. Singapore has a tropical climate and receives plenty of rainfall year-round. Keep an umbrella or a raincoat handy.
Singapore is closely situated to the equator. It has a tropical climate with humid and hot weather. If you plan to walk don’t do so beyond 10 minutes. The humidity will make your suit look damp and wilted. It’s important to maintain a sharp look when meeting clients. Also, keep yourself properly hydrated.
Exchange Business Cards
Every business meeting or social event requires exchanging of business cards in Singapore. Do remember to carry business cards in adequate numbers. Use both hands while giving or receiving them. Though a Western approach is used to conduct business, but etiquette and customs are primarily Asian, particularly Chinese. Don’t put away business card immediately on receiving. Show a basic courtesy of showing an interest in the card you received.
Indulge in Corporate Entertaining
Corporate entertaining is common is Singapore when conducting business. Clients are usually entertained over corporate lunches and dinners. Smoking in public should be avoided. It is prohibited in many places and socially unacceptable.
Respect Local Culture
Local culture and peoples’ attitude should be respected. Avoid overreacting or overly display of emotions. Be punctual. Reaching a business meeting late is considered disrespectful. Age and hierarchy should be respected. Avoid excessive public display of affection, though handshake with opposite sex is normal.
Choose Air BnB for Stay
Accommodation options catering to business travelers of all budgets are available in Singapore. However, prefer to stay in Air BnB-style serviced apartments MetroResidences. This curated platform provides an extensive list of corporate serviced apartments offering up to 40 percent less in comparison to costly hotels. This is beneficial for all those planning to stay for a month or more.