• [En]
  • [Fr]
  • [Es]
  • [It]
  • [Tr]
  • [De]
  • [Pl]
  • [Ru]

  +31 76 58 70 401


+31 76 58 70 401
Company Formation Belgium



10 Things You Didn’t Know about the Belgian Business Culture

Updated on Thursday 14th December 2017

Rate this article
5 5 1
based on 1 reviews

10-Things-You-Didnt-Know-about-the-Belgian-Business-Culture.jpg1. Punctuality

Both the Flemish and the Walloons consider that punctuality is important in business meetings and in general. The Flemish can be a little stricter regarding this aspect.

2. Language differences

Belgium has three official languages: French, German and Dutch. Most Flemish will also speak French and Belgians are known to be bilingual and even tri-lingual. It is polite to show consideration when doing business with Belgians and lean a few basic phrases so you can adapt to a Walloon or a Flemish business environment.

3. Communication 

Face to face communication is important in any business relationship. When making introductions in Belgium the general rule is to firmly shake hands (a gentler squeeze when meeting women). Belgians will start conversations with an “ice breaker” topic and foreign entrepreneurs can expect a warm welcome.

4. Using titles

Individuals are not usually addressed by their titles. An exception to this is done in case of university professors or lawyers. First names are only used after some time and if the other party allows you to.

5. Business meetings

Business meetings usually take place in a formal setting. Appointments are necessary and they will be scheduled by the person with which you are meeting.

6. Dress code

The dress code in Belgium is conservative: dark colored suits jackets or business suits and conservative dresses. The dress code can be a little less formal in young hi-tech companies.

7. Gift giving etiquette

Business gifts are not that common in Belgium, although if you decide to offer some sort of reasonable gift after having successfully ended a business transaction, it should be modest and neutral (no flashy business logos on the gift)/

8. Dining 

Dining can take place at a restaurant or at home (although this is reserved for family and friends). Toasts are usually given by the host of guest of honor. It is polite to stand up during the toast. The Flemish raise their glass twice during a toast: at the beginning and at the end.

9. What to avoid

Certain topics and behaviors are best avoided in Belgium. Some examples include pointing or using over-expressive hand gestures, asking personal questions, talking about the wages, racial minorities or making a point out of the Flemish-Walloon differences.

10. Doing business in Belgium

Belgians can be direct in communicating their business intentions. However, when starting a business you can expect to encounter a certain degree of bureaucratic steps. Investors in Belgium should be prepared to adapt to a multicultural and open country.
For any other questions related to how to open a company in Belgium and how to run a business you can contact our company registration experts in Belgium


  • Suhail 2015-10-27

    Interesting article. Can you advise about business consulting in Belgium and how to approach the market.

    Hello Suhail! We are glad that you found our article useful. If you need company formation services in Belgium, we kindly ask you to send us a detailed e-mail at office@lawyersbelgium.com and we will reply as soon as possible. Have a great day!

Comments & Requests

Please note that client queries should NOT be posted here but sent through our Contact page.

Meet us in Antwerpen

Dennis Vermeulen is the manager of INCO Business Group, a company formation firm which offers incorporation services to foreign investors in Belgium and in other countries. 


Call us now at (+31)-765870401 to set up an appointment with our consultants in Antwerpen, Belgium. Alternatively you can incorporate your company without traveling to Belgium.

As our client, you will beneficiate from the joint expertize of local lawyers and international consultants. Together we will be able to offer you the specialized help you require for your business start-up in Belgium.

Contact us

Online Incorporation


Tax Calculator




I was looking for a reliable company formation team in Belgium for one of my clients when I found CompanyFormationBelgium.com. They were very responsive and offered high quality company incorporation services at very competitive prices.

Francesco Dagnino, Partner of
Lexia Avvocati

Read more testimonials

We Recommend ClientPedia

This website is marketed by ClientPedia

Banner-Promoting ClientPedia-244px.jpg