Thai culture is very diverse, thanks to the variety of ethnic groups and inherited foreign habits and traditions. However, when you live or travel in Thailand, there are so many general things that are essential or just nice to know.
Thai culture is deeply rooted in historical and religious traditions of the Thai people, and it has a profound influence on the way of kingdom’s life. Thai cultural habits are distinctly different from those accepted in the West. First of all, we have to mention that Thais welcome each other by a salutation known as Wai, rather than by shaking hands a tradition westerners do. Thais call that gesture of bowing Sawadee, and it’s one of the first things they teach their children. It makes Thai people very proud to see their little babies bowing. All greetings, such as: Hi, Hello, How do you do, Welcome, Good morning, etc., as well as Good bye and See you later, are also Sawadee in Thai.
Hospitality is the essence of Thai people’s nature and while greeting guests into their houses or offices, first off, they cater guests with a glass of water. Likewise in the restaurants, first, you’ll be served up cold water, regardless you haven’t order nothing yet. Prior to entering a Thai house, make sure to take off your shoes. The same is true in Buddhist temples and in traditional Thai restaurants where guests are seated on the floor. Appropriate to mention that it’s quite natural for Thai people to sit whether squatted or right on the floor, rather than on chairs.
Thai people respect the elders and referring with regard to the older common people as Pee, meaning the older brother or sister. It’s also customary to call youngsters as Nong, meaning the younger brother or sister. And while in restaurants or similar places, it’s polite and more approprite to call the staff whether as Pee or Nong, rather than a waiter.
Modern Thailand is indeed an open and forward-looking society embracing almost everything that comes its way, even an advent of casual sex, still Thai people are rather conservative in regards to the Thai women’s behavior and dress. The well-favored female bodies might not be flaunt, and the dress fashion should vacate all foreplay matters to the imagination. And as far as the dress code is concerned, in spite of the hot weather, vast majority of female office staff fancy to wear stockings. As behavioral trait, the long-standing tradition of making a curtsy is still customary for Thai girls to show respect while passing nearby a dandy man.