China Business Travel |

According to the American Express Business Travel’s second survey of corporate travel management service in China, the country will become the world’s third-largest market for corporate travel within five years. The survey shows that the spending on international business travel by China approximates US$4.2 billion a year, which is 17 percent of the Asian market for business travel. This figure, in addition to the spending on the domestic business travel in China, adds up to almost US$20 billion.

The healthy growth of China’s GDP is likely to secure a two-digit rise in China’s business travel market in a few years. It is estimated that by the year 2020, the number of Chinese business travellers will be five times as many as that at present. International travel service providers and global giants such as American Express, Kar Shun Travel, and Rosenbluth have noticed the potential of China market for business travel and have made inroads into China.

Global business travellers are advised to adhere to local business etiquettes. In Chinese business culture, conservative suits are the norm. For business purposes, it is traditionally acceptable to call a Chinese person by the family name, together with a title, such as “”Director Li”". Avoid using someone’s first name unless you know him or her closely. Formality is a sign of respect, and it is sensible to clarify how you will address someone early in a relationship.

Business hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday. There is, however, a five-day workweek in larger cities. Avoid visiting government offices on Friday afternoon because this is sometimes reserved for “political studying” of the officials. Offices are typically closed on public holidays including the Spring Festival, during which most Chinese take five days off; other holidays during which offices close include Labor Day on May 1, and the National Day on October 1.

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