Business travel is growing within the U.S. and across the globe, especially with the booming economies in China, Brazil and Australia.
But an innocent hand gesture can doom what otherwise would be a very profitable trip across international borders.
International business trips, launched from the U.S., reached 6.78 million trips in 2011, a 3% increase over 2010, according to the Global Business Travel Assn., a Virginia-based trade group.
To help make sure those business trips go smoothly, Dean Foster, a cultural etiquette expert who has consulted for such companies as DreamWorks, Volkswagen, Heineken and Bank of America, has put his 25 years of expertise in a series of cellphone and tablet applications.
Foster, who founded New York-based DFA Intercultural Global Solutions, has created 20 apps, one each for countries such as China, Japan, India, Brazil and Turkey. He is working on more apps now. The apps are sold in ITunes and the Apple App store for $9.99 each.