If you are in business, then there is a high possibility that you will have to visit the United States one day. America is home to the headquarters of some of the world’s largest companies and most outstanding conference venues.
Whether you are traveling to the U.S. for a convention or a business deal, here are nine tips you can use to make your experience more enjoyable.
1. Avoid City Limits After Dark
America is a friendly and accepting society. However, this does not mean that it does not have it social issues like every other country. Be careful wandering around cities and make sure that you stick to the tourist areas. Crossing the wrong block in some neighborhoods could land you in serious trouble if you are not careful.
2. Photocopy Your Documents
Keep copies of your papers on hand at all times. If the police stop you, they will demand to see your identification. Keep a color copy on your persona and lock up your real documents and passport in the hotel safe.
3. Leave Your Itinerary with Your Family
Leave a copy of your itinerary with your employees, friends or family so that people know where you are at all times.
4. Extend Your Budget
You will probably end up spending more than you planned, even if you are as frugal as possible. Make sure you have access to emergency funds and remember to tell your credit card companies that you are traveling overseas.
5. Prices Exclude Tax
This note is an important one, the sticker price in stores excludes sales tax, so remember to add on an extra 5% to al prices as a good rule of thumb.
6. Apply for an International Driving License
You might need to drive around a bit if you are not visiting one o the major cities that have a public transport infrastructure. In this case, hiring a car will be your only option. Remember to apply for your international driving license and bring a copy of your state issued drivers license along with you in the car.
7. The Water is Safe in Most Cities
In most cities that you travel to in America, it will be safe to drink the tap water if you absolutely must. We still recommend that you drink filtered or bottled water wherever possible, but if you are caught in a spot and need a drink to quench your thirst, tap water won’t make you sick.
8. Tip for Service
There are millions of Americans working in service jobs. These jobs pay minimum wage, and the way they earn their living is by providing you with exceptional service. If you visit a restaurant or bar in America and receive excellent treatment, remember to tip. Leave at least 15% of the value of the bill as a gratuity for your waiter or bartender.
9. Use Professional Visa Services
U.S. Immigration and customs require travelers to the United States to have a government-issued visa to enter the country. Check with your local travel agent about the visa requirements. Some countries have lower restrictions on entry to the U.S. for their citizens. If you live in an approved country for the ESTA visa, then you can apply for an ESTA with a specialized agent that will ensure you are ready to travel as soon as possible.
The Final Word
Doing business in America is easy, everyone speaks English, and it’s relatively easy to get around in the major cities. Take your time while you are in the country to expand your network and meet as many new people as you can. America is the land of opportunity, and if you look hard enough, you may even discover a gem of a business deal.