Learn about Thai customs before visiting Thailand

Conoce las costumbres de Tailandia antes de visitarla

Getting to know the traditions of Thailand before arriving in the country is as important as booking a good hotel to rest. Therefore, we tell you the most important ones. Adapt to Thai culture and you will enjoy your stay more.

Thailand, a country with its own identity

We start off with some of Thailand’s customs, which are very useful when socializing with Thais. One of the most fundamental is to smile almost continuously. Also, you should keep in mind that:

  • Every day around six o’clock in the evening the national anthem plays. You should stand up and listen to it with respect. At shows and events, it is the real anthem that is played. You should also stand to listen to it.
  • When you talk to someone, you should add Khun before their name. They will do the same.
  • Older people should always be respected. For example, they are the first to start eating.


How do you greet people in Thailand?

Learning this custom is essential because you will use it all the time. The word you should use, both when you arrive and when you leave, is “sawasdee”, and you should accompany it with the gesture “wai”. This consists of joining your two hands in front of your chest as if you were praying.

Conoce las costumbres de Tailandia antes de visitarla


Religion in Thai Culture

The main religion in Thailand is Buddhism. You will find thousands of temples scattered throughout the country. Not surprisingly, it is common for every Thai to go to a temple during their daily routine. Do not forget to take into account the following recommendations to avoid being called out.


Temple customs in Thailand

Just like entering a house, Thai culture requires you to take off your shoes. You have to remember that you are in a religious compound and that you cannot raise your voice. When you sit down, you must bend your legs, but with the tips of your feet facing away from the altar. The reason is that the feet are in contact with the ground and pointing to any deity with them is considered disrespectful.

Regarding the clothes you should wear, it is essential that you cover your shoulders and do not wear pants or skirts that are too short. This prohibition is in force in the royal palace in Bangkok, but in the temples you will always be advised to dress properly.

The monks who inhabit these religious buildings often talk to tourists about their religion. Keep in mind that they are highly respected and you should not sit too close to them. Women are not allowed to touch them under any circumstances. To make any offerings, do it in the corresponding place, as they are considered as a sacred person.

Conoce las costumbres de Tailandia antes de visitarla


Thai customs when visiting a house

It is at their homes where you have to be more aware of their customs. Do not forget that, if you are invited to a house, you have to bring some kind of gift. Shoes should be left outside the house, as it is considered an almost sacred space. It is important that the clothing is discreet, as a sign of respect towards the hosts.

You will find cushions scattered on the floor that will serve as seats. Everything revolves around the table, so the food will be the protagonist of any visit. In addition, you should thank, with the aforementioned greeting, the food you have been served. A buffet is usually served. On the table you will find a spoon, a knife and a fork, but the latter should not be put in your mouth to eat. Don’t worry; the food will be served in small pieces. You should always hold the rice with your right hand. Be careful with sauces if you don’t like spicy food. Maintain decorum throughout the visit and don’t forget to smile.


What should we avoid in Thai culture?

If the above information is extremely useful, in Thai culture there are a number of customs you should avoid such as:

  • Hugging or kissing your partner in public. It is considered disrespectful.
  • Wearing a Buddha tattoo. It may be considered blasphemy.
  • Stomping on money with your foot, as it includes the silhouette of the king. In some areas of the country you could be fined.
  • Wearing black, as this is the color of mourning. Avoid it at a celebration, a wedding or when going to a hospital.
  • You should not publicly disregard any symbol related to the country, the king or religion.
  • Do not touch anyone’s head, including small children, and do not pass an object over it. The head is the home of the spirit and is considered sacred.
  • Do not point to your feet or use them to move an object. Do not walk over someone else’s food or books.
  • Buddha images are sacred. Do not climb on them to have your picture taken and do not place any replicas you may buy in unsuitable places.
  • Clothing that is too tight or too short is not suitable for either gender. Pants and skirts should be at least knee-length.
  • Regardless of the situation, avoid humiliating or embarrassing someone publicly.
  • Hugging or kissing Thai women is frowned upon. Greet with the “wai” and always keep an appropriate distance from them.
  • Eat with your mouth closed and without making noise. Talking loudly during the meal is considered a very impolite gesture.

Apart from all the above, avoid attracting attention and do not behave inappropriately. Despite the undeniable hustle and bustle of the shopping areas, Thais tend to be quiet and comply with the above-mentioned customs.

Now that you know the traditions of Thailand, it will certainly be easier for you to behave like a Thai. Review all the customs and take them with you when you travel. Surely, your trip will be more bearable and you will avoid having problems with the locals or even with the authorities. This will make your trip to Thailand a much more complete experience.


Hotel Eden Beach Resort&Spa a Lopesan in Khao Lak

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