South Asia Cruises – A Fun and Easy Way to Explore

There are many things for you to see, visit and enjoy while on a cruise to South Asia. Some of them are – exotic Buddhist monasteries and modern skyscrapers; glitzy shopping malls and local markets; famous beaches and secluded islands; rugged terrains and deserts; colonial structures and virgin lands. You will get an opportunity to see all this and much more, while cruising through the waters of South Asia. The places that you must not miss visiting on this trip are the magnificent beaches of Kerala and the tranquil beaches of Sri Lanka.

There are many options for you to choose South Asia cruise package. You will have to spend some time to find out a package, which suits your requirements perfectly. Research the packages offered by various companies and find out what all facilities are covered there. If you are looking to pamper your senses and indulge yourself a bit, opt for a luxury package. Apart from the regular facilities, you can enjoy some of the luxurious features during your trip. On the other hand, you can also find a discount cruise, if you are not willing to spend too much money on this.

Packing you things properly to travel on a cruise is very important. You must take care of small details to ensure that the trip is a hassle free one, especially if you are traveling with your family consisting of children. Carry some board games on-board; if they get bored the kids can spend their time playing these games. Also make sure that they take part in any on-board activity, which is specially arranged for kids so that they do not feel left out. For all you cruise lovers out there – a cruise is a must for you. So, plan for a trip soon and have fun on the trip.

The Best Business Lounges Around Asia

Long flight. No sleep. You’ve spent almost 20 hours in the air and now you’ve got five hours to kill in this airport 5,000 miles away from home. You don’t know anyone for thousands of miles; everyone you see is a complete stranger. You’re alone. So very, very alone. What you need is a good drink.

It’s a fact that Asia has more business travelers per capita than any other continent on the planet. The business world has its pivotal hub in the Asia Pacific region, with Hong Kong, Singapore, and Tokyo only playing parts in the area’s distinct economic influence on the world. Therefore, the airports around Asia reflect the deep regard and respect each Asian country has for the men and women making their economies grow.

Having a good business lounge to reward today’s Business Warrior on their long travels is just another way of brightening a day fraught with temperamental children and rough turbulence. Walking through the doors of a lounge designed specifically with you in mind is like being hugged by mom.

There are lounges designed strictly for VIPs and business people, while others cater to all passengers. If you are a business traveler and you just got off a flight that included a family of five loud tourists, it would be wise to avoid going to the lounge they just stepped into. Try the one that specifically caters to you.

There are things that any lounge will have, regardless of whom gets in. They will usually have:

o Drinks
o Snacks
o Television and internet
o Comfortable seating

There are some, however, that fly just above the rainbow. Here are the select few lounges in Asia that offer exemplary class and service.

o Hong Kong International Airport (Hong Kong)

Cathay Pacific’s Wing Lounge in the Hong Kong International Airport not only caters to any specific taste, they pride themselves on improving on even the most minute of details. They offer first-class travelers private cabanas, private showers, and chaise lounges.

o Suvarnabhumi International Airport (Bangkok)

Thai Airway’s Royal Orchid Lounge not only offers the best in travel, but their layover accommodations go beyond the normal rules of class. You feel stressed? Get a Thai massage or take a hot shower. If you need to have a last second meeting, meeting rooms are right there. Also, should you need transportation anywhere, Royal Orchid has a fleet of Mercedes-Benzes at your beckon call should you need to go anywhere.

o Chengi Airport (Singapore)

This airport features almost unanimously lauded lounges. Whether you need to nap, shower, or visit the spa, they have you covered. And if you have a lot of time to kill, you can go on a Singapore Tour. Yes. For a 5-hour or longer layover you can take one of four tours around the city and make it back well before you flight.
If you don’t want to leave the airport, you can walk around in one if it’s six gardens. That’s right. And airport with six gardens. What more could you want?

o Dubai International Airport (Dubai)

Dubai is almost defined by the decadent hotels there that cater to the world’s nobility. Movie stars, world leaders, and rich heiresses have all stayed a night or two in the gold-plated, marble-floored castles for the elite. So why stop there?
The Dubai International Airport took the luxury of a 5-star hotel and transposed it into their lounges. With restaurants that feature a dining experience unparalleled in air travel, it is clear to see why people clamor to be stuck in Dubai. They offer spas, Jacuzzis, a full gym and swimming poor to all first-class passengers.

o Incheon International Airport (Seoul)

Asian airports are known to pamper their travelers. Like the airport in Singapore, Incheon offers travelers with selected layovers tours of Seoul. They went one up on them, however. The VIP lounges are catered specifically to first-class flyers. Also, for the past two years straight the lounges in Incheon International Airport have been given the Global Traveler award for the best in the world.

In a time when simply being good was never so hard, these airports looked great, seemingly without effort. Naturally, you would be just as tired of flying in a VIP lounge as you would in the terminal. But there a lot to be said about hating to fly in style, as opposed to despising it on a plastic chair in front of Gate 24. If the adage, “you get what you pay for” is true, then these lounges are worth millions.

Public Relations in Asia

Over the past 20 years, the continent of Asia has achieved more than its fair share of economic success and any business, international or regional, would do well to expand its roots across Asia. Yet, even in Asian companies, expanding across the territory remains an exciting challenge.

The reasons for this are almost immediately apparent to anybody: every territory of Asia comes with a different language and a unique culture – which is something hoping to do business in Asia has to take note of.

These differences in culture between different regions of Asia can seem daunting, but this is where effective public relations has to come in. Good PR is an important keystone to any business anywhere around the world, but it becomes especially important when a business is expanded to an area as heterogeneous as Asia.

Let us take Malaysia and Singapore as an example. The two nations are literally a small bridge apart, but the differences in managing perceptions in both countries may surprise you. Here are 3 things to take note of when expanding to Asia, with a closer look into Singapore and Malaysia:

1. Language Diversity

Let us tackle the most readily obvious issue at hand first: diversity in language.

In Singapore, English is readily accepted. A PR agency in Singapore can have a press release delivered to almost all members of the media in the language without many problems. The same is true, to a certain extent, for Malaysia, although it would be prudent to take note that Malay is the de facto official language of Malaysia. Submitting a press release only in English to a Malay newspaper or magazine may be considered culturally insensitive.

For PR agencies in Singapore sending press releases to members of the Malaysian media, it is crucial to translate the release in English, Bahasa Malaysia, and Chinese. Paying attention to the audience you are attempting to communicate with is also key, and it is best to send press releases in the respective audience’s spoken language for increased exposure. For example, if you were to send a press release to a member of the Chinese media, have it translated into Chinese before sending it out.

2. Social/Religious Practices

Aside from language, one should also be wary of differences in culture. This is, again, an observable factor in both Singapore and Malaysia. As a whole, the Malaysian media tends to be much more conservative than the Singaporean media. To use an example, the Singaporean editions of women’s lifestyle magazines such as Cosmopolitan frequently address and make references to sex in their content, whereas such content is hardly seen in the Malaysian editions. This is attributed, in part, to the fact that around 60% of the population in Malaysia practices Islam, and many things in Malaysia cater to that majority demographic.

Such an example is especially applicable for PR firms in Singapore dealing with Fashion PR and Lifestyle PR to be cautious about when reaching out to the Malaysian media and readers. In short, observing the religious demographics of the region you are doing business in is essential to avoid embarrassment or fracas of any sort.

It also pays to take note of important religious practices in the region. For example, in both Singapore and Malaysia, it is customary for Muslims to go to a mosque for prayers every Friday. Hence, avoiding scheduling meetings on Friday afternoons when dealing with a Muslim client shows attentiveness on to their needs on your part.

3. Political Backdrop

Last, but definitely not least, pay attention to the news and conduct research for insights into the political backdrops of each Asian region.

Of course, there may be certain topics best not to breach regarding the governing bodies of each region. A notable example would be the sensitivity regarding Taiwan’s independence from China.

Sensitive issues regarding bi-lateral relations are not the only issues to look out for. Singapore and Malaysia have been ranked 150 and 147 on the 2015 World Press Freedom index respectively, as both nations practice heavy censorship.

To use an example, healthcare PR and advertising in Singapore is heavily regulated. Health-care institutions can state only factual information in ads – hence phrases such as ‘Best Clinic in Singapore’, ‘Asia’s No. 1 provider of Healthcare’ are banned from healthcare advertisements. These ads also cannot provide information in ways that amount to ‘soliciting or encouraging the use of services’.