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> 10 things NOT to do in Thailand
starlagurl
post Feb 5 2008, 11:09 AM
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I've never been there, but I would probably do some of these things if I had not seen this list.

Especially the "raising your voice" one. I get a little excited sometimes, and then I get a little loud...but always loud + a smile, so maybe I'm OK on that one...

http://www.earthoria.com/10-things-to-not-...n-thailand.html


Here’s a little list I’ve compiled of things you should not do whilst in Thailand - please feel free to send in your comments or additions at the bottom!

1. Do not raise your voice or get angry with locals

It makes me incredibly uncomfortable to see foreigners (’Farangs’) come to Thailand, and start ranting and raving aggressively at the locals. Thai people generally do not shout at each other or show anger - everything is done with a smile, however annoyed they are.

Reasons for this foreign aggression usually include: the fact that foreigners often expect all Thai people to be fluent in English, combined with the fact that things in Thailand do not happen at the same pace or with the same efficiency (or level of stress?) that they do in the West. If you’re easily wound up by people not understanding your machine-gun garbled English, and expect things to happen as and when you click your fingers, I’d suggest you headed somewhere else on holiday. (Be warned, beneath the smiley Thai demeanor lies a raging monster waiting to explode - and should you push them far enough, you will not know what hit you.)


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wakingdream
post Feb 5 2008, 11:23 AM
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QUOTE
Do not raise your voice or get angry with locals

It makes me incredibly uncomfortable to see foreigners (’Farangs’) come to Thailand, and start ranting and raving aggressively at the locals. Thai people generally do not shout at each other or show anger - everything is done with a smile, however annoyed they are.

They refer to this as saving face. I once watched a certain European dude scream his lungs out at one of our Thai friends over a room he was not satisfied with. Our Thai friend did not raise his voice once. This guy screamed for at least ten minutes. He made such as ass of himself and a major spectacle. You'll get way farther by being polite and calm. I think this should apply in any country though. Cool and collected. Sometimes people get bent way out of shape when bartering for something too. Always shake my head at that.

Raising your voice or losing your temper will never be constructive in Thailand. It will result in loss of face for everyone involved, and you may be ignored as a result. You may notice Thai people smiling in the face of another’s misfortune. This is not a sign of callousness, but an attempt to save face for the person suffering misfortune. Saving face is the major source of the famous Thai smile. It is the best possible face to ease almost any situation

QUOTE
If you’re easily wound up by people not understanding your machine-gun garbled English, and expect things to happen as and when you click your fingers, I’d suggest you headed somewhere else on holiday.

Yeah, just don't go somewhere else where English is not the first language!


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rbisset
post Feb 5 2008, 11:38 AM
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I was about to lose it with a local on Koh Pha Ngan but was saved by my phone ringing. It would have been justified though because he was screaming at me because I told him his 800baht rooms were too expensive!

The guys walking around Bangkok and Chiang Mai shirtless are just idiots.

Oh and I did ride a moped in Cambodia with no helmet in shorts/t-shirt/flip-flops and no training ever, but that was a 1 off and I hated it. Plus I was sober smile.gif


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wakingdream
post Feb 5 2008, 01:58 PM
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QUOTE
The guys walking around Bangkok and Chiang Mai shirtless are just idiots

Oh don't be so harsh, that's so totally sexy. tongue.gif

I don't think you should do these things anywhere;

Do not expect things to happen “as they do at home"
Do not get overly amorous in public
Do not expect people to follow the same driving rules they do “at home”
Do not have unprotected sex with a stranger
Do not raise your voice or get angry with locals
Do not ride a motorbike without a helmet and/or whilst drunk
Do not only eat western food
Do not speak negatively about the King( or heads of state, Queens etc.)

Okay, so that's pretty much the whole list, smile.gif but really....

A little common sense goes a long way, no?


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thellie
post Feb 5 2008, 06:31 PM
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the things i see a lot of (up in chiang rai or down in bangkok) are:

girls with everything hanging out. by this i mean thin, low cut, strapped tops. it's not on, girls! look around at thai women and see how they're dressed. the vast majority will have covered shoulders and no cleveage showing... as much as this can be sexy (and believe me there are plenty of women out here, for whom it is definitely NOT a good look), it is embarrassing to locals. if a thai women is wearing something like this, then 10:1 she's working in a bar trying to get farang in for a drink.

you do it because you're hot, or want to get that suntan...? ...go somewhere else!

i ditto the blokes walking around with their shirts off as well... morons.

i disagree with starlagurl about loud, with a smile, being ok. i have met some extremely loud, bouncy farang, and they are equally embarrassing. thai's won't say anything because they don't wish to offend, but you're losing respect everytime you open your mouth. i have to say that they are, not exclusively but, largely canadians, with the occasional yank thrown in (you hardly see americans up here).

western food, if you live here long enough, becomes too bland to eat anyway. i'll have a pizza maybe once every couple of months, but apart from that, it's local and spicy.

i ride my motorbike without a helmet outside of chiang rai, and sometimes inside the city precincts in the evening. during rush hour, it's an enforced law to wear one, although only the driver is required - this caused us some grief in chiang mai, when we where stopped and given a ticket because pooki (my girlfriend, and passenger at that point) wasn't wearing one (i was, btw). she told the policeman it was ok in chiang rai, he smiled and pointed out the directions to where she needed to pay the fine, she smiled again, accepted the ticket, we left going in the opposite direction with her saying that she wouldn't pay...

but i agree about drunken riders, especially on the islands. i spent a month on koh phangan, and the number of people wandering around with scabs, limbs in plaster, bandages etc was incredible. i saw two crashes while i was there as well, and heard of a couple of deaths. as the bloke said, driving out here has it's own style and peculiarities - not something the 2-, 4-, 8-week tourist should get involved in. i'll be back later in the year (i'm off travelling for a few months) with an international driving licence, and will be taking my thai driving test within 12 months.

all the rest of the points are pretty standard fare out here. as susie says, it's basically common sense.

treat people how you would like to be treated yourself.

remember that english is not the first language, and the more you move away from the backpacker/tourist ghettos, the less it's spoken. a good thing i think, as you have to start learning some of the language, which i believe is the first thing anyone going anywhere should do. a few phrases; please, thanks, excuse me, sorry, yes, no... and a smile, will help you no end.

people who come here without knowing or understanding the culture will make an ass of themselves. most of the time, it's small things, and most of the time it's forgiveable. but each time you do something, you lose respect from thais around you. they have lived here all their lives, and only see an idiot who is doing stupid things. so the quicker you learn thai culture, the better for everyone involved.

btw, i've lived here for about 11 months, and know a little of the culture - it will take a lifetime (and more) to learn it all, but i'm trying. i am studying thai at school and can speak, read and write it (not necessarily understanding much of what i'm reading...!), which has been so helpful in my time here. as have my two tattoos, in thai script - karma based text - which people read and then, smile, give me the thumbs up and we then we quite often start chatting.

i have a friend who's been here 3-4 months, and swears blind he knows all there is to know about thai culture, but he hasn't got a clue. chases after girls, doesn't want to learn the language (although he is going to lessons because his company told him he must), doesn't engage in local events which are so important in the culture. so he's slowly losing respect from the people he knows, and just doesn't realise.

anyway, this has gone on far too long, so i'll stop now...
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Paul
post Feb 5 2008, 10:08 PM
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Who are you talking about Thellie? Ha ha.

Hmmm, I was just about to start a similar topic. But will start something else instead.

WOW! So much could be answered about this question.

Hmmm, background first. I am certain that currently I am witnessing a rapid destruction of Thai culture due to a number of reasons. Much of this culture I find beautiful and it makes me sad to witness it disappearing. Certainly the parts of Thai culture that cause Thailand to be a relaxed, happy place to live that is safe, family friendly and community minded - I really would like to keep them.

So, in answer to the question - please research Thai culture and don't do anything that speeds up its destruction. Don't buy things or act in ways that promote excessive consumerism, selfishness, Western values, religions, and ways of life. Don't demean women, the Thai culture or religion or way of life.

Don't speak rudely to anyone. I don't care if they are the cleaner or the bar girl. They are human and deserve your respect and polite behaviour. They deserve to have their own self esteem.

Don't demand Western luxuries when staying here. Just stay here and experience Thai life, and therefore help preserve it.

Enough for now

Do come here and enjoy yourself and experience Thailand.
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webmind
post Mar 16 2008, 12:46 PM
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Don't buy things or act in ways that promote excessive consumerism, selfishness, Western values, religions, and ways of life. Don't demean women

You mean like people do in every other country in the world? You think it is just western people becoming consumers in thailand? you r the one who is prejudiced with your tired old politically correct radical thinking. Don't demean women, you mean like have sex with them for money? Give it up.
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Paul
post Mar 16 2008, 10:33 PM
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Yeah - you are totally right. Do come here and demean women. Do treat people like S*$#. Do buy expensive things and stay in expensive places so that prices increase and locals are forced out. Do buy things that cause massive pollution and changes to Thai society when being produced or imported. Do demand that all Thais speak English and kow tow to you like a demi god. Come and wreck the place.
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starlagurl
post Mar 17 2008, 12:51 PM
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Very strange. I think webmind is saying that most westerners demean women and then he is lumping you in with that group... am I right?


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Paul
post Mar 17 2008, 09:48 PM
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QUOTE(starlagurl @ Mar 17 2008, 12:51 PM) *

Very strange. I think webmind is saying that most westerners demean women and then he is lumping you in with that group... am I right?


I am not actually sure what he is trying to say. Basically I think he considers his own short term pleasure more important than the health and well being of others or the long term consequences. ie. he is a selfish person. He is correct in that there are many of them. Western, Thai and otherwise.

But my point is to ask people to consider that this country is my home and home to over 60 million others. Yes, come and visit us. But treat our home the way you'd like us to treat your home. You wouldn't want us to visit your home, treat you poorly and make changes to the way you live. That isn't what visitors do.
Come and visit. Have fun. Relax. Fit into our life for a bit. That is what visitors do.
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starlagurl
post Mar 18 2008, 09:11 AM
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Yeah, and then apply that to everywhere else...


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kevozman1
post Sep 13 2008, 05:25 AM
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QUOTE(Paul @ Mar 16 2008, 10:33 PM) *

Yeah - you are totally right. Do come here and demean women. Do treat people like S*$#. Do buy expensive things and stay in expensive places so that prices increase and locals are forced out. Do buy things that cause massive pollution and changes to Thai society when being produced or imported. Do demand that all Thais speak English and kow tow to you like a demi god. Come and wreck the place.



Do you not realize that western people bring a lot of wealth to Thailand also. How poor
do you think rural Thailand areas would be without westerners. As for the 'demean women' part, if you really think that Thai men treat women better than westerners then I think you are bullS*$#ting and do not live in Thailand.
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Paul
post Sep 13 2008, 05:46 AM
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What ever
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Paul
post Sep 15 2008, 05:26 AM
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That is a good list

(But what would I know?)
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starlagurl
post Sep 15 2008, 12:12 PM
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Cool thanks, I think I get it. I don't think it should be too hard to not get into trouble there.


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inasia2008
post Sep 15 2008, 10:40 PM
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QUOTE(Paul @ Sep 13 2008, 07:46 PM) *

What ever


WHAT!! OMG so you have been LYING to us all this time about living in Thailand??? How could you? So what you just got all that great information you post on here from Google or something, you totally cheated then!!!!!!!!!!!!! HUH, imagine that, you must be REALLY REALLY bored then Paul! May be take up stamp collecting or something!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wow I was really taken in too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! crazy.gif devil.png
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Paul
post Sep 16 2008, 01:12 AM
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Yes, actually I live in a big city in a "1st world country" and work behind a desk and just dream of living in Thailand. I am quite bitter and twisted and unhappy with my life.

I just made all that stuff about Thailand up from the top of my head. I didn't think anyone would know or actually ever go to Thailand. I didn't even know the country really exists.

Oh well, I better just collect stamps then.

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Paul
post Sep 16 2008, 01:14 AM
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Just to prove how amazing my imagination is, here is some information that I just made up. It comes from an imaginary friend:

"History was made on 5 September 2008 when, in open elections at the monthly village meeting of Ban Huay Hom Phathana in Phrae Province, three Mlabri people were elected to serve on the village council. This is an official position recognized by the Thai Government. This is the first time that Mlabri people, sometimes called Phi Tong Luang, or Spirits of the Yellow Leaves, have been elected to serve on a village level.

In spite of the Mlabri being in the minority in the village, the three Mlabri candidates were elected over some Hmong candidates. This means that they had the support not only of the Mlabri community, but of significant numbers of Hmong villagers as well.

Udom Suksaneh, who has lived with the Mlabri for over twenty years, said, "Their election provides evidence that the Mlabri people are advancing and able to represent themselves. It's a clear demonstration that the Hmong have accepted the Mlabri in this village as their equals."
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