In Thailand, people speak the Thai language. Thai is a quite difficult to learn, everyone says. My favorite example: Question, is there any new wood? “mee mai mai mai? The answer, no, there is no new wood, new wood is burned. “mai, mai mai mai mee, mai mai mai, or Who sells eggs “kai kai kai? answer Kai sells eggs, “kai kai kai. you see, there is a potential of miss understanding. The language is strongly dependent on pronunciation, which for us foreigners is pretty hard to get right. Okay if you know some words Thais love it and try to understand you by the combination of the words used. thank’s to that or I would still not be able to speak after ten years. To make it even a bit harder, there are also many different dialects. Don’t be discouraged, learn a little and enjoy the reactions.
Important, if a Thai doesn’t understand you, he won’t say so, be careful and ask him what he understood.
English is the next best try. In places where tourists are common people should understand at least a little English.
Food and Drink
What is commonly known as Thai food are mostly menus from center Thailand. There is a different kitchen in Issan, North-East and another in the South. Not even the same rice they eat in Issan, there is the home of sticky rice. Issan people would say, if I eat no sticky rice I’m not full. The same happens in the rest of Thailand, they say, if I eat no white rice I’m not full. I love sticky rice, I take it in my hand, knead it and eat it like bread.
All over the country, most sweet dishes with rice are also made with sticky rice. Thais Love to eat and in the ten years, I am here now I can still find some things I haven’t eaten.
Som Tam, is a very often eaten food here and too there are different styles. You better try the “Thai” style first and say not hot. It’s the one on the first pic and has only peanuts as special. The second one is Som Tam Boo kem and has salted lake crab pieces in it and is a bit hotter already. The third main style is the Issan style with fish paste, “bralaa” and this has definitely a taste that “westerners” don’t like.
There is a too much to say about food and drink, I could fill a book. See my category “eat in Thailand”.
Thailand’s national religion is Buddhism. Thai people are not prejudicial about religion. Live as you like as long as you respect the others.
Thai people are actually quite conservative people. you don’t find many “crazy” people except in touristic places. They might look quite freaky to us by the way they dress but most just dress what they can afford and don’t make a statement. So don’t think a guy wearing a cannabis shirt knows anything about cannabis, he just likes the way it looks.
The daily ritual is, getting up early in the morning, take a shower eat breakfast and go to make money. In the evening they come home, take a shower and eat again, watch some TV or “kui len” talk with family, maybe take another shower and go to sleep early. Here in my village, I wait almost ten years for the first time we sit outside at night, make a fire and enjoy our life. You find some people drinking together till maybe nine at night but that is already late. So if you plan a party, plan it around lunch or afternoon, if you plan it after dark you might be disappointed that everyone leaves early or you have to force your guests to stay.
When you go ‘len nahm’ swimming you’ll see Thai girls and women don’t take their clothes off. don’t go too naked or they loose respect for you. this is mainly in rural regions where there are not many tourists. But Thai people have quit prude.
Thai King and Family
Thai Bath is the currency, about 30฿ to one$
I strongly suggest you have a bank, ATM card on you. ATM’s are almost everywhere. Be careful, they charge per payout, not percent so, don’t get too small amounts at a time. The chance that you get stolen cash money by Thai people is really very small. More dangerous I judge foreigners that stay a long time in Thailand. Thais get your money with more sophisticated tricks, which in the end have to blame on yourself.
Changing foreign currencies is a bit of a struggle and also there are all kinds of changing rates and commissions. This also counts for checks.
Thai Holidays, Ceremonies
- Thai Songkran is the most important holiday here. It stands for new years and the start of the rainy season. Thai people enjoy Songkran by visiting their families, have water battles and sing, drink and eat. It lasts three days and is around mid-April. Like all Buddhist festivals, it depends on the full moon. Buddhist traditional Sundays are always on the full moon, half empty moon, empty moon, and half full moon.
- Western new years is celebrated nowadays too. Thais also go home to visit their parents and relax for a few days.
Not to do’s in Thailand
there are a lot of things Thai people do not do. Most of them are not easy to understand for an outsider but it’s better just to follow the rules. You quickly loose a lot of respect if you don’t follow these rules.
* Thais never enter a house with shoes
This is very important, especially in temples and private homes. you quickly see whether or not people take their shoes off in front of the door.always remember where you put your shoes or you walk home without.
* Thais never talk bad about the King, Buddha, and Government
You can talk about everything with your Thai friends but be very careful when it comes to these three themes. Thais are very proud people and don’t like outsiders making jokes or talk bad about their system. It’s a Thai custom not to talk openly about everything. You can make a person lose his face by doing so.
* Never shout out loud at a Thai person
In western countries, we are used to arguing with one another. Thai people don’t do that. as long as you don’t know a person really long and talked about this issue you better do not argue. If you get loud, loose your temper, you make your opponent lose his face, you won’t know how he reacts. Thai people have a very hard time admitting to wrongdoing like they don’t do that. Also don’t hit the table when you are angry or anytime, in fact, this is rude.
* There are a lot of little rules which are useful to follow like
don’t walk over a lying person
don’t walk over food, because they often eat on the floor
don’t point your finger at a Buddha figure
don’t kiss in public
try to look friendly all the time, I know that is not easy haha.
Was this of any help to you?
If you have any questions or something else you would like me to know, please feel free and comment at the bottom of this page. Thank you!!!
Also see these posts
This kind of Phra Yant Phaya Krut Garuda Magic Cloth Lucky Life Protection Thai Rare Amulet, you find in almost every Thai household. I think it’s very decorative and gives a slight Asian touch to every room.
Every Thai wears an amulet like this. The Pra Sangkajai Happy Buddha Pidta Lucky Rich & Safe Life Thai Amulet, my wife said is a good one. It goes for about 35 Dollar.