Thai men are extremely interesting and exotic, but generally a complete mystery to people coming from Western countries. But today, I’m here to help you learn everything about them.
So if you’re curious about what Thai men are like and thinking about a relationship with one, I’m here to cover all the basics, from the good to the bad, and everything in between.
Short summary about men in Thailand
Just like women in Thailand who are also special, men in Thailand are unique.
They are charming, polite, and very gentle, sporting a great sense of humor, and always up for a good time. And despite their gentleness, they’re extremely protective of their families and loved ones.
At the same time, Thai men can be very jealous and possessive while paradoxically considering that if it’s them who cheat / are not loyal, it’s just how things should be.
They’re known to be pretty controlling in a relationship, and sometimes they’re not the most easygoing guys in the world. I would say that being in a relationship with man in Thailand can sometimes be described as being in a roller coaster.
Let’s get a bit more in depth now and see why I say that.
What to expect when dating a man in Thailand
When it comes to dating Thai men, there are a few things you should know, especially if you come from a different region and are not really familiar with the Thai culture overall.
The first thing you should know is that Thai men are usually more traditionalist when it comes to relationships.
This means that they’re not as direct as people in the West. Instead, they will most likely approach you in a more polite and reserved manner, making them seem shy (although that’s not necessarily the case).
Even later on, they’ll usually find it difficult to be open about their feeling – either positive or negative. At the same time, they won’t mind if you take the lead in the relationship, although they are very possesive.
He will likely want to marry you as opposed to being in a longer-term relationship and he will probably expect to have children with you as soon as you’ve said “Yes.”
However, there are some Thai men who are more modern in their approach to dating. These men are more likely to approach you in a more casual way, and they may even ask you out on a date without being too serious about it.
Like everywhere in the world, there’s a bit of everything available – so don’t be surprised if you meet one that seems a bit more confident and modern.
These men are also more likely to be more open with their feelings, and they may be more willing to take the lead in the relationship.
Another thing you should know about dating Thai men is that they are very romantic – and this is exacerbated by their apparent shyness.
So expect men in Thailand to be charming and attentive, always trying to make you feel good and giving you small gifts and such.
They usually like to take you on romantic dates and make sure that everything is just perfect for you. It’s a nice culture and definitely a change from the “me first” culture we see more and more in the West.
While public display of affection is not really common in Thailand, this doesn’t mean that Thai men don’t like physical affection. However, they will be more private about it and they will typically wait until the relationship is more serious before they express their love for you.
As time goes by, they will seem to lose a bit of interest and can seem distracted… but that doesn’t mean that they no longer like you. It’s just how they are and how they express their trust.
Thai male beauty standards
Men from Thailand are known for their good looks, but there is more to them than meets the eye, as you’ve seen in the section above.
However, since the first impression is made based on what we see, we’re going to focus on the aesthetics a bit now.
When it comes to looks, your regular Thai man goes for a simple and understated style. Men here don’t really like flashy hairstyles or make-up, and they prefer to dress relatively conservatively.
And they do love their flip flops! It makes sense, since the weather is always hot in Thailand, but don’t be offended if he arrives at the third date wearing flip flops. Maybe even the first!
So apart from the flip flops, which seem like the “must have” accessory in Thailand, the most popular style among men here is the “dad look,” I would say.
This means that they will typically wear loose-fitting clothes that are more comfortable than good looking. It’s all about comfort in Thailand, even though the men won’t shy away from stronger colors.
Men also generally keep their hair trimmed short, and they will rarely wear a beard or mustaches or display any facial hair whatsoever.
Another popular style among Thai men is the “bad boy” look. This is actually the complete opposite of the “dad look” and it basically refers to men who dress in a cool, modern way and care a bit more about their overall physical appearance.
These are heavily inspired by modern movies so expect the “bad boys” to be more open minded and modern, but also more liberal in relationships. You win some and you lose some, what can I say?
So, as you can see, there’s a lot of variation when it comes to looks among Thai men, but the dad look is still the most popular, in my opinion.
Even though it doesn’t sound like a good thing, you’ll get used to it and get to enjoy it sooner rather than later.
Men in Thailand: Their personality
I have already touched on this in the opening paragraph, but I want to get a bit more in depth now. And do remember that these are some general considerations – there can and will be exceptions.
Thai men are generally considered charming and charismatic, despite a somewhat shy nature and extreme politeness. They also have a strong sense of family and tradition, always ready to put in all the extra work needed for the well being of their family.
Overall, Thai men are known for being hard-working and driven and even though Thailand is one of the cheapest cost of living countries right now, with low salaries, they won’t give up and keep hustling.
But it’s not all without trouble in paradise. Thai men are usually possessive and can get really jealous. They want to make sure that they are the center of your attention and will rarely appreciate or even allow you to flirt with other men. Which is not necessarily bad.
What is bad is the Gik thing. We’ll talk a bit more in dept about it below, but the general rule of thumb is that they are completely against you interacting with other men, but they consider it somewhat natural to cheat. This is what I call the paradox of men in Thailand.
However, this proves that they are interested in keeping their woman safe and happy – but also theirs alone.
As you can see, Thai men are complex and unique individuals who can be both charming and demanding. They are truly worth all the trouble, though!
Do Thai Men Cheat? (The Gik issue)
While it is true that some Thai men do cheat on their partners, there are also many Thai men who are faithful and loyal and would never consider cheating. This sounds like how things are worldwide, but there’s a bit of a catch here.
First, I have to say that it’s difficult to put all Thai men in one bucket and generalize, but we have to do it for the sake of this article.
Because it is in Thailand where they have the concept of gik, which is basically the Thai word for “friends with benefits”.
Gik is not considered cheating – by many men there at least – in the same way that it is in the West, and many see nothing wrong with having a gik.
In fact, some Thai men believe that having a gik is actually good for their marriage. Well, of course, they need an exuse!
This is not to say that all Thai men cheat, but it is important to understand the cultural context in which infidelity is viewed and be prepared for that.
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If you want to try a different route, it might be a good idea to try and talk about the “gik” issue during the first few dates to see what their opinion is on the matter.
They usually don’t lie about this, so you can be prepared and if you don’t like their answer, look for another man.
Where to meet men in Thailand (as a foreigner)
Being such a large and beautiful country, there is no shortage of places to meet men in Thailand. You can basically find your dream man anywhere in the country.
However, I would say that the best place to start your search is in the capital city of Bangkok. Bangkok is a really lively city with plenty of entertainment options and venues… and especially more modern thinking men.
If you’re looking for a more laid-back experience, the island of Phuket is a great place to meet Thai men. There, you’ll find a more relaxed atmosphere, but also men that are used to meeting foreigners since it is a popular destination.
Another great city for meeting Thai men is Chiang Mai. This is the current digital nomad hub, so expect plenty of foreigners there and a more Westernized culture. You can even travel from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and see which is better for you.
In these cities, the best places to meet men are pubs and clubs. Also, be sure to check out the internet for dating sites that cater specifically to foreigners or hit on the general apps like Tinder, which is really popular in Thailand.
Alternatively, you can check out my article about the best dating website in Thailand and start there.
Having in mind that you are considered exotic, by being a foreigner, you shouldn’t have any problem attracting interest from the local population, no matter where you are in Thailand.
Just make sure that, when real life interaction is involved, to give them the regular signs that you are interested, otherwise they might be too shy to approach you. Or just go ahead and make the first step yourself!
How to tell if a Thai man is interested in you
Thai men can be a bit difficult to read, but there are some telltale signs that he is interested in you.
I’ve said it a million times already: many men here are shy and it will usually take them a bit before making a move – if they ever do that, so a bit of a “nudge” from you can help.
First, he will likely try to make eye contact and smile at you. This is not necessarily a sign that he’s into you, because everybody is smiling in Thailand.
But if he goes the extra mile and tries to engage you in conversation, being close to you when talking and “accidentally” touching you (nothing inappropriate), it’s a good sign that he’s into you.
I would say that the best approach here is to send him the regular signs yourself – he will catch on those and hopefully he won’t waste too much time before making a move.
To wrap things up, if you’re looking for a good man to settle down with, even though he’s not perfect (nobody is), it’s important to understand the cultural differences and embrace them while in the country.
While they might seem difficult to read at first because of their shyness and politeness, Thai men can be very rewarding in a relationship.
Just remember to be open with him and discuss the potential “Gik” issue to know where he stands on the matter – if you do care about that, of course.
Do you have anything else to add to this guide about men in Thailand? Don’t hesitate to share your thoughts and experiences below.