Dos & Don’ts for Thais going to Farangland.


>Do arrive at appointments on time, Farangs don’t enjoy having to waste their precious time waiting for folks who turn up half an hour late every time.
>Do get used to being away from your family, you can’t live with your mother all your life.
>Do get in the queue, you don’t need an umbrella around your head if you jump in front of any old ladies.
>Do, even as a customer say ‘thank you’, Farangs are pretty polite in a variety of situations.
>Do get used to saying ‘good-bye I have to go now’ to people and not just walk off halfway through a conversation.
>Do, if you don’t understand some instructions tell the person straight, there is no need to feel embarrassed about such things in Farangland.
>Do, if you drive a car, obey the traffic laws, your influential uncle’s name-card is not going to work with the local traffic police there.
>Do, as a student or worker, ask if a question if you don’t understand something, you are not going to be sympathized with if you make quack-wack mistakes.
>Do get used to the hideous sight of hairy chests in the summer, the locals just love the sun!
>Do get used to the local food, you can’t live on ‘Mama’ noodles for the rest of your life.
>Do get used to the locals constantly complaining, it is their national pastime.
>Do, if you make a mistake say ‘sorry’, Farangs don’t give a darned about who is older than who etc..
>Do, if you don’t know where you are going, ask a local for the way, he will tell you straight up if he doesn’t know and not point you in the completely wrong direction like back home.


>Don’t ask the locals to the likes of ‘And how old are you?’, that’s his darned business and not yours.
>Don’t ask the locals to the likes of ‘What’s your nickname?’, as they probably wouldn’t have a clue what you are talking about.
>Don’t ask the locals to the likes of ‘What is your religion?’, such things are regarded quite personal in Farangland.
>Don’t ask the locals to the likes of ‘How much do you earn?’, you don’t want them thinking ‘What the heck has that got to do with you?’
>Don’t ask your unmarried Farang lady friend ‘And why aren’t you married?’, she may not feel that she needs a man to survive in life.
>And certainly, don’t ask any black guys to the likes of ‘Where do you come from?’, you don’t need to be on the receiving end of a smack on the nose.
>Don’t take your skin whitening lotion with you, you don’t need to make a right mockery of yourself.
>Don’t use a fork to stick a piece of fruit in your mouth, such acts are considered completely uncivilized in Farangland.
>And don’t put your head halfway inside your noodle soup bowl when eating, Farangs can be quite sensitive about ‘their’ eating habits, just like you!
>Don’t bother talking any fish sauce with you, such things exist in Farangland too.
>Don’t even think about bribing the local authorities when you have done wrong, you don’t need to be made guest of the corrections department for the next three years.
>Don’t complain about the time length of having to wait for your visa, strict regularities have to be met since half your fellow countrymen have fled the scene and did a ‘Robin Hood’ on arrival before.

Well, it seems that we have been concentrating quite a lot recently on promoting Thai values to foreigners so I thought I would do a twist and come up with this. And since a lot of me Thai friends have been having a right laugh at the Farangs’ expense on some of me other ‘Do’s and Don’ts’, I thought a little bit of medicine was called for.

As always, please don’t take me dos and don’t’s TOO seriously, just having a little bit of fun.

This is the tenth blog in me ‘Dos and Don’ts’ series and I don’t know when they are going to end, the rest can be found in me archives.

17 responses to “Dos & Don’ts for Thais going to Farangland.

  1. Oops! I always use the fork for fruits even abroad!

  2. Do get used to the locals constantly complaining, it is their national pastime.

    Been to sunny California I see, Steve. 🙂

    Forks are ok here and tour wonderful “tan” will be much envyed,

  3. I think this would be even better if you also provided a Thai translation…:)

  4. My contribution, Steve,

    Do try an overpriced hotdog or beefburger from a London street vendor -the survival rate is quite good these days

    Don’t offer the driver a high value note for your bus fare -it is a long walk back to your hotel.

  5. Another hilarious one Steve, I love it!

    I laughed out loud when I read about our national past time of complaining, so true and I am just as guilty for sure (on occasion na).

    Although to be honest a ‘smack on the nose’ is unrealistic if someone asked a question like ‘where are you from’ to a black person here. More likely than not they would be on the receiving end of the guys punches and kicks and those of his friends (or far worse) if he thinks even for a second some poor innocent Thai is being racist especially in my neighborhood here in DC which is pretty diverse with people but still on the rough edge of life for many.

    One of my roomates is Lao and he and my Thai friends when they come over had to learn the same thing which is a good survival tip in my scary looking neighborhood or anywhere else, don’t talk to the blacks on the street even when some of them on drugs try to spam you for change, keep your head up, look straight ahead where you are walking to like you know where your going even if you don’t and avoid eye contact with any of them so you don’t appear threatening. Racism is one of the most sensitive issues around here in American and any Thais that come here should be very careful. Ask a (white) farang friend first before making any comments or asking a question. Sorry for the mini tangent there I finally have my PC fixed so I am itching to blog again. Look for a new one soon!

    As always a great ‘do’s and don’ts’ to learn thanks!


  6. A great blogs, I just to know that don’t ask any black guys to the likes of ‘Where do you come from?…….Thank’s for Do and Don’t …..

  7. Bingo McFurley

    A great blog from Mr Steve.

    I agree with you Pompenkroo – a Thai version of this would be welcome.

    Thanks for clearing up the bit about Thais pulling a Robin Hood when they go abroad. I used to live near a highly forested area in the States and had often seen Thais prancing around there in green tights and one even shot me in the arse with a bow and arrow. Didn’t put two and two together until I read your blog.

    I think some farangs have nicknames, just not ones that they would like to share with an inquisitive stranger. The nickname “Pant-load”, which was given to me in my high school gym class still smarts.

  8. Well.. what else can I say except it’s so true !!! hahaha… funny as always…. and no rejection at all of what you wrote, Steve 🙂

  9. Gotta say that this Mr Bingo guy is pretty funny, perhaps he ought to be writing blogs himself!

    im a translator of Thai>Eng so for Eng>Thai i’d have to pass them on to my fiancee to translate. But she complains that my blogs are ddifficult to understand. Dos & Donts no probs though.

    Thanks for the info on a Thai version, will chat to the Webmaster for some suggestions. May be i could put on a link as i don’t want the blog to run too long as it would fill up the main page here quickly.

  10. Craig Hartel

    Hello, Steve.

    My name is Craig, and I live in Dawson Creek, BC. I am very interested
    in travelling to Thailand one day and as I was doing research tonight
    I came across your blog. What an absolute delight it is to read!

    I especially appreciate the “advice” you give on your “Do’s and
    Dont’s” posts. They were a lot of fun to read through.

    Just thought I would send you a quick note to show my appreciation for
    your site.

    Best wishes,

  11. Mr. Steve,

    Funny as always. I see this stuff happen as I have lived in America culture for 11+ years now. Maybe you should publish a book called “Do and Don’t in Fanagland.” This would be funny as hell….ha

  12. It’s interesting to turn the tables for once, Steve. 🙂

    Like you said, focus seems to be on what foreign visitors to Thailand should do to live up to local expectations. I think that what Thais should keep in mind while visiting Farangland is just as important, although I think it’s not a fair comparison.

    There is no such thing as Farangland; each Western country has its own set of customs. We can detect similar patterns, but we have to keep in mind that nearly every culture has it’s own variation to the theme.

    For instance, some of the above guidelines seem to be uniquely British; about others you can just tell they are American. What about, say, the customs of Italy, France, he Netherlands? Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Poland?

    See what I mean?

    For the follwing section, I started to write a few more examples that I intended to be an addendum to your list… however, as I wrote, I thought up more and more, and the initially small list grew up into this 10+ point monster. It’s hardly a comment anymore. I figure, rather than cluttering up your Comments section, I will just write it as a separate blog for the sake of clarity.


  13. I am really enjoy to read this website ! Many new things for me here.
    It’s fun to know new things in farangland which I never know before. And it’s fun to read about what should do and what should not do in Thailand when farangs live here. It’s make me have a giggle ^ ^ I think that cute. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. 🙂 I want to be a member here but I am still not good enough in english language to write what I want to share with you guys. Hopefully someday ! 🙂

  14. Hello Steve,
    always enjoy your posts here speciall the so hilarious Do’s and Don’ts. They are so funny and in the case of Farangland, it’s true.

    Most people with a nickname are not proud of it, unlike Thailand, where people’s nicknames are cute and lovely and of good luck, farang’s nick names can be quite the oposite, emberrasing, etc.

    I agree with Maitree, it would be great if you published a Do’s and Dont’s about Thailand and Farang world. It will be entertaining and educational for both farangs who visit Thailand and Thais who visit any Farang country.

    I do have one question. As you may know in various western countries, body language means a lot, just one gesture can be a sign of respect as well as it can be so plainfully rude. In Thailand are there any gestures or body movents to be aware of? I know in your book you can include these too.

    I cant wait for your next writting.

  15. It’s great except that most Thais will not read it; their English is not that great to understand it if and when they do read it.

    Plus if they go to Farangland, many will
    just hang out with other Thais or Japanese both because they are shy and also because the natives do not want to bother with them for the most part ( except if they are very pretty girls).

  16. …For instance, some of the above guidelines seem to be uniquely British; about others you can just tell they are American. What about, say, the customs of Italy, France, he Netherlands? Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Poland?

    The Thais call all these countries- FarangLand.

  17. Not that funny for a Thai like me. I must say you’re so wrong!