Chinese Business Dinners

AA is a truly international fellowship of men and women, and e-AA is certainly no exception. Also check for links to AA resources worldwide.

Chinese Business Dinners

Postby Walter16 » Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:56 am

Hi All,
I'm traveling to China in a week or so and am really nervous about the business dinners. I know the Chinese like to drink a lot and "loosen" up. I'm just not sure how they will feel about me turning down there drinks. I am anyways, but am I going to be offending them?
Any other drinks I can order? suggestions :D
Forums Newcomer
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:44 am

Re: Chinese Business Dinners

Postby PaigeB » Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:14 am

Never been out of the States myself. But I have heard a lot of tips for dealing with the drinking crowd. You can always beg off, demurely humble about having jet lag or being an early to bed person. But that might get arguments and eventually submission. For me, this might set up a resentment - not good when heading out to drinks.

I go with the standard and it is the truth too. "I am allergic to alcohol. They say I might go blind if I drink again" (blind to the Light). You can tell them the allergy makes you break out in handcuffs if you want a laugh.

Tip the bartender/waitress in advance to assure that no alcohol goes into your beverage - have them garnish your drink with a flag showing it was made just for you (the flag could be an orange slice). Have canned or bottled soda pop or water delivered unopened, and do not leave your drink unattended at the table.

If you really must go, maybe have them join you at your hotel lounge where you can easily excuse yourself.

If all else fails, claim you have diarrhea. No one wants extra details about that condition. :lol:

Remember there are AA meetings all over the world. Here is a link to the USA/Canada GSO site with listings for AA China call them in advance with itinerary and see about english speaking meetings & 1000's of friends you haven't met yet! They will also be able to answer the cultural question about offending someone.
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
The e-AA Group's 7th Tradition link:
User avatar
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 7686
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:28 pm
Location: Iowa USA

Re: Chinese Business Dinners

Postby Noels » Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:18 am

This is so useful and good to know. Thanks Paige. Gonna use these ideas myself. I'm

Re: Chinese Business Dinners

Postby ezdzit247 » Tue Apr 05, 2016 12:15 pm

Hi Walter

A trip to China sounds like a wonderful opportunity to have new adventures and experiences. Lucky you! Just the mention of it makes me hungry for dim sum and pork buns.... :wink:

From what I've been reading in business news over the years, some of China's biggest trading partners are ME countries which are (theoretically at least) very "dry" countries (no pun intended) where selling or drinking alcohol is prohibitive and in the US, some of China's largest clients are Mormon business leaders so I would think Chinese business leaders are already very much accustomed to doing business with people who don't drink and won't have any problem at all with you not drinking at business dinners.

I have attended business dinners, family dinners, and other social gatherings where alcohol has been served since my earliest days of sobriety and have always dealt with it by just saying: "No thank you." or "None for me, thank you." On occasion when someone has pressed the issue with something like "Are you sure? This is really good wine.".... or whatever, I've just said: "Thank you, but I don't drink." That's what has always worked for me.

Hope you have a great trip and remember to come back here and tell us about it.

Keep coming back....
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of leave the world a better know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
User avatar
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 2072
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 4:38 pm
Location: California

Re: Chinese Business Dinners

Postby positrac » Wed Apr 06, 2016 8:42 am

Drink tea. I lived in Asia for over 7 years and I was sober and of course the press will be to drink and "save face" BS, but just use the best excuse that works for you. Breaking out in hand cuffs may get lost in translation.... :roll:

Go with the flow and act normal and when asked you can express your excuse and carry on.

Safe travels.
Work hard, stay positive, and get up early. It's the best part of the day.
George Allen, Sr.
User avatar
Trusted Servant
Posts: 1278
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2014 4:03 am

Re: Chinese Business Dinners

Postby Noels » Wed Apr 06, 2016 9:36 am

:D hi everyone :D this makes me remember the first official function I went to. It was an absolute necessity and I stressed something awful! What if the appearance of alcohol affects me or what if the smell affects me or what if and what if ..... well off we went and we landed at a table with serious drinkers. Talk about getting thrown right into the middle of it! Yet I remained completely unaffected. Hubby and I happily had our passionfruit and lemonade - no problems. The only time that I had a moment of panic was when a happy camper pushed a shot of something unexpectedly into my hand. Golly, I passed it over to hubby's side with the speed of lightening and when the happy camper asked me why I wasn't drinking the shot, out of nowhere came the true and honest answer -" I am allergic to alcohol. When I drink I get drunk".
That brought about a burst of laughter but being drinkers I think they understood the message. It was a wonderful and most enjoyable evening. And the good thing ..... I remembered it the following day :D
Like the big book says : if you honestly have a good reason to be in a drinking environment you need not fear. You will remain unaffected - in my own words from memory.
Love and Light

Return to Globe Trudgers

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests