Dating in Thailand as an expat – that will be the topic of today’s article.
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Trying to find someone to make you laugh until your stomach hurts? Someone that makes your stomach rumble with love and delight at the sight of spicy shrimp soup or other Thai cuisines? As a Thailand expat, you might probably find the dating world a little complicated.
However, dating in Thailand as an expat is not impossible. Thailand is a hotspot for stunning beaches, luxurious royal palaces, delicious cuisines, and potential significant others. Nonetheless, the dating scene as an expat can either be as easy as sharing a love for elephants or as difficult as trying to get settled in the country.
As an expat, trying to find love in Thailand in the same place as your country leads to a fail. The movies make it seem as easy as accidentally spilling a hot coffee on a love interest and, boom, wedding bells. You probably shouldn’t do that, except it’s an inevitable accident.
The dating scene for expats in Thailand is different due to factors like; the difference in culture, language barriers, the active pace of life, etc. Dating in Thailand as an expat goes beyond sharing a romantic playlist that professes your love or visiting them the second time with the hope of meeting the parents.
Whether it’s an expat like you or a Thai, you have to consider the factors that make Thailand different from your country. Thus, if you are searching for a Thailand Romeo or Juliet, a Thai that makes you forget you are an expat in their country, this article contains the know-how to dating in Thailand as an expat.
Before we dive into the do’s and dont’s of dating in Thailand as an expat, let’s tackle the mindset. It’s no secret that a mindset is the first step to having that guy or girl call you back.
For instance, dating in the west entails buying chocolates, flowers or binge-watching a movie at the cinema, and the next day, you get invited to the family’s barbecue party.
Taking chocolates and grilled meat into the Thai dating scene might seem like the bare minimum or extreme. Later in this article, we’d cover the dating tricks to winning over a Thai other than flowers.
Another mindset to get rid of is, relying on the internet news on dating a Thailand. Although the internet has its perks of being a hub for every information you’d need, at times filtering through the noise is essential.
There is few information online that speaks against dating in Thailand as an expat. Now, some of those dating reviews might not necessarily be all bad news. However, keep in mind that the relationship tips that works for one person might not work for another.
Hence, aside from hoisting your luggage with a confident smile to explore the opportunities Thailand’s got to offer, step down from the airplane with the mindset that dating in Thai has its fair share of happy endings.
Places To Meet Singles in Thailand
Equipped with the factors to keep in mind when finding love in Thailand as an expat, how about we take a ride to where you can find love in Thailand.
1. Online Dating Sites
Online dating sites are filled with potential partners, especially if you are a new expat in Thailand. Being a newbie, going out to meet people can prove difficult since you hardly know how to navigate through the country.
However, a dating site has tons of Thais and expats who can help you get settled in the country. You also get to pick out a date based on your preference in terms of hobbies, age, and other factors.
For safety precautions, please get to know your date well before you meet with them and set a meeting in a public place for comfort. Some online dating sites in Thailand include; Thaicupid, Thaifriendly, or you can try out Tinder for a mix of Thais and expats like you.
2. Bars and Coffee Places
Movies tell no lies in portraying bars and coffee shops as a hub for love. The bars are always filled with Thais, especially on the weekends. The bars and coffee shops are great places to meet a partner and share each other’s interests over a cup of cappuccino or a beer.
3. That Event and Festival Grounds
Events bring people from all nationalities together, and Thailand has tons of popular events. These events range from the New year celebrated on the 31st of December, Thai’s new year, also called Songkran, celebrated every the 13th of April for five days, to Yi Peng, a lantern festival.
These events bring tons of Thais together with fun activities to carry out, making it a place to find a potential partner amongst the crowd of people.
4. Friend of a Friend
An advantage of being an expat is you get to have a diverse group of friends. Being an expat in Thailand, your friends can set you up with another friend of theirs; after all, they know you better and understand your preferences, which will likely lead to a happy ending for you.
The workplace is an excellent place to find a partner because you get to find out your shared interest. However, some workplaces ban expats from dating Thai staff to avoid break-up controversies and an awkward work atmosphere.
Hence, if you are not looking for a long-term partner, it’ll be best to avoid dating at work.
How To Sweep A Thai Off Their Feet
Meeting someone for the first time can make you nervous, especially if you like what you see. However, once you’ve met a Thai you want, how do you win over their heart? What do you say to keep the conversation going? The following tips will guide you through shooting a Cupid into the heart of a Thai.
1. Stay Punctual
Tardiness on a first date or random dates is turn off for Thais because they value their time as much as their food. Hence, always try to stay punctual to every date you have with a potential Thai partner.
If you are running late, which might be inevitable at times, you can politely put them in the know about your situation.
2. Learn the Common Courtesy
Courtesy in the dating world is a gesture that makes your partner swoon, and for the Thai, they hold courtesy very dear to their heart. Learning the traditions and culture of the Thais is a great way to impress a Thai partner.
Some of these cultural courtesy includes;
- Greeting them by the native language “wai.”
- Addressing the Thais by their first name
- Avoid using your feet to make gestures or point at something.
3. Be Authentic and Straightforward
Thais have massive respect for authentic, straightforward people who are upfront about how they feel. Learning the Thai culture doesn’t mean you should force it, instead let it flow.
Thai people are naturally appreciative and will appreciate just any amount of work you put into learning their culture. Thus, you can use tips to win a Thai’s heart and still be authentically you.
Communication is a vital factor for a healthy relationship, and the Thais are honest people; hence communicating openly without expecting your Thai partner to play mind reader is sure to win them over.
Listening to them, paying attention to them makes them feel loved and heard. They are sure to reciprocate the same energy back to you; however, always listen to understand rather than reply because communication without comprehension is futile.
5. Incite Love at a Pace
Although Thais love an upfront person, they also work at a pace; being straightforward does not mean forcing a love connection, especially if it’s your first time meeting.
Take your time to know a potential Thai partner to build memories and a smooth love connection.
6. Don’t Be a Show-off or a Know It All
This tip goes back to being authentic; avoid trying too hard to know everything about the Thai culture, instead take it at a slow pace. Showing a Thai you know everything about their culture, especially on a first date, might come off as pushy. Rather give your Thai partner the floor to teach you some things.
Avoid talking about your inheritance or your gold medals with a Thai; you might come off as arrogant, which is a turn-off for a Thai partner.
Understanding A Thai Lover
As a Farang (Thai slang for expats), once you’ve swept off a love interest into your arms, the next step is to understand who they are as Thais and their love language. If you are lucky, you can meet a Thai who shares a similar personality and love language with you.
However, if you fall amongst the rare group, here are few tips to guide you towards understanding and dating a Thai.
1. Thais Are Affectionate
Thais are naturally friendly and lovely people; thus, the majority of the traditional Thais who are single are affectionate, shy, and conservative. Hence when dating a Thai, if you are more of an extrovert, you’d need to be patient with their shy nature, specifically for the Thai women.
It is a common fact that Thai women tend to avoid physical contact on a first date due to the tradition that couples should only make physical contact after marriage.
2. Thai Lovers Are Committed
Thais are naturally hardworking people who always stay focused and committed to their goals. Thais tend to work hard to support their loved ones and rarely depend on people.
For a fruitful relationship with a Thai, be sure to reciprocate the same love and hard work they put into making the relationship work.
3. Thais Love to Learn
Not every Thai has left the comfort of their country to travel to a new environment. As an expat, your Thai partner would love to learn about the western culture or how different your country is from theirs.
Telling your Thai partner about your country’s cultures, festivals, or events makes them excited as they are always willing to learn. It is like bringing a movie scene out of their imagination to life. Thus, whenever you want to take your Thai partner to your hometown, they’ll know how things are run in your country.
4. Thais Are Cheerful
Thailand is popularly known as the city of smiles due to the friendliness and positivity the Thai locals exude. Regardless of their problems, the Thais are known to put on a cheerful smile. Hence, you can rest assured of a gentle smile from your partner whenever you have a rough day at work.
5. This Holds Their Families in High Esteem
Thailand is a country rich in cultures and traditions; you should understand that one of these cultures respects the elders and families.
While preparing to meet the family of a Thai lover, you should expect a festive atmosphere as Thai elders are kind and see the visit of an in-law as a big deal, hence the joyous celebration.
6. Thai Marriage Expectations
This applies to the male farangs (male expats in Thailand), as the Thai dating tradition expects the man to take care of the woman and her family. Therefore as a male, you must be financially stable to handle the family responsibilities.
For the lower-class Thais, they expect that their daughter’s marriage attracts fortune to them. The Thai marriage tradition places the dowry of the girl on the financial earnings of the man.
However, most of these traditions have been curtailed as of 2010; you can rest assured of a smooth journey down the aisle.
7. They Put Their Faith First
Buddhism is the main religion in Thailand, and the Thais are dedicated to their faith. The Thai religion also plays a role in the dating tradition, as the Buddhist monks are given a donation or gift on behalf of the couples as a means of blessings and spiritual respect.
Communicating With A Thai Lady
As an expat, communicating with a Thai can prove difficult due to language barriers, only a few Thais are proficient with English. Finding a Thai who ticks off all the boxes on your dream partner list except the communication aspect can be a hurdle in your relationship.
Hence is it worth it to learn the Thai language for better communication? Here are your answers.
1. Learning Thai opens a world of opportunities and meeting new people
The majority of the Thai locals aren’t proficient at speaking English; hence for a comfortable stay in Thailand as an expat, learning the language should be on your bucket list. The Thai language opens you up to a world of opportunities and an easy first date with a potential Thai partner.
2. Excellent Communication with your Partner
There’s no denying that relationships are far from perfect, and on one of the days misunderstandings arise, communications set the ground for peace. Learning Thai helps you understand your partner whenever they express themselves, especially if they’re not as fluent in English as you.
3. You Understand the Culture Better
Learning the Thai culture might prove difficult, especially if you are a newbie in Thailand; however, understanding the language gives you a deeper insight into the culture and traditions of Thailand. It also builds a closer connection between you and your Thai partner.
4. You Communicate with the In-laws Better
Having a significant other that’s fluent in English is great, but getting them to be your personal translator whenever the In-laws are around can be tiring.
In order not to place too much pressure on your other half, learning the Thai language helps you relate better with the families.
Learning the Thai language doesn’t necessarily mean diving into a whole encyclopedia; instead, you can start with the common phrases by learning from your significant other.
Once you are firm on the phrase aspect, you can dive into the complex vocabulary; all you need to do is equip yourself with patience and consistency through the learning phase.
Date Ideas As An Expat
Although meeting in a public place on first dates is a great idea, especially if you guys met via an online dating site, if there’s a positive sign of a second date, then you should equip yourself with date ideas and where to go.
These ideas apply to either a male or a female expat because, as a guy, it’s common courtesy to know where to take a lady, and for female expats, you can make few date suggestions.
1. Coffee Shops
Coffee shops are a great hub to bond and get to know each other, especially for first dates. This is because most coffee shops are situated within a public arena and are reasonably packed with people, plus the comfortable hum of silence, making talking easier.
You can check out some coffee shops in Thailand like; Gallery Coffee Dripin Bangkok, Ceresia Coffee Roaster in Bangkok, Roots Coffee in Bangkok, and tons more.
Thais don’t joke with their foods, and neither should you; with tons of delicious cuisines flowing in this country, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t take a ride to a food place.
Food is a helpful bond factor in relationships. Thus you don’t need to visit a luxurious restaurant. Even the simplest restaurants in Thailand serve the best meals, and you necessarily don’t have to stick to Thai food; Bangkok is a hotspot for all varieties of food.
Some affordable restaurants in Thailand include; Mae Varee, T&K Seafood stall, Shoshana, etc.
Thailand is known for its aesthetic beaches, which makes it an excellent option for dates. Dates necessarily don’t have to require bills; you can both take a relaxing walk and talk moment down the beach, especially a few hours to sunset.
You can find incredible beaches in Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya city, Kamala, etc.
This is a great option if you’ve gotten to a comfortable phase with your Thai partner. Watching a movie in a silent dark room with someone you are still awkward around can lead to date fail.
5. Festival Grounds
As stated earlier, festival grounds are notable places to meet your other half; there is also a great date idea. Joining in on the festivity can be fun and exhilarating.
An instance of a celebrated day in Thailand is Loy Krathong, also known as the festival of light and lanterns marked in November. This festival entails lighting up a lantern and setting it afloat to the sky, which is something you and your significant other can partake in.
6. Home Dates
Keep in mind that taking a Thai to your home on a first date will portray you as having the wrong intentions. Due to their conservative nature, you shouldn’t have a home date with a Thai at first meet. However, if you’ve gotten to know each other better or are dating already, then home dates are a great option.
You can enact the other listed date ideas at home as well; you just have to get creative.
Thailand is a vibrant country rich in culture, foods, beautiful places, and lovely people. Whether you’re stepping into the dating scene for casual fun or for a lifelong partner, dating in Thailand as an expat is sure to be a joyous experience for you.
You get to experience what an interracial relationship feels like and simultaneously learn about the country itself. Keep in mind to always stay authentic rather than trying so hard to fit in, as Thais are naturally appreciative; you can be rest assured that your Thai partner will love you just the way you are.