What to doEdit

  • As is the case in many Eastern cultures, respect for elders is important, and it is customary to use honorifics with people you are unfamiliar with. The most common way of addressing someone you don't know or someone senior to you: use the term Khun followed by the person's first name (applicable to both men and women).
  • Show respect to monks. Monks are highly respected in Thai society, and the importance of showing respect to them cannot be overstated. It is customary for Thai men to be ordained as monks. If you cross paths with a monk in public, lower your head a little and greet them with the 'wai'. If you are on public transportation, give up your seat for them. You do not have to be a practising Buddhist to acknowledge a monk; just be polite.
  • Ask questions about someone's vocation and education. Thai people do this to ascertain how they should address and interact with you.
  • Attempt to learn the local language. Thai people know that Thai is difficult to learn and they will very much appreciate your efforts to speak it, even if your knowledge of the language is rudimentary. Demonstrating that you can read and write Thai will very easily wow and win over many people.
  • Try to experience the local cuisine and learn more about Thai culture. Thai people appreciate the few foreigners attempting to learn more about their culture and way of life.
  • Share food and snacks with people you're close to. In an office setting, this is common and expected.
  • When meeting people, exchange gifts. This is common and expected.