Spotlighting Tradition in Thailand From a Buffer Teammate


Finding out about stories and views which might be other from our personal helps our adventure of inclusion by means of lowering bias, construction recognize and extending empathy, whilst offering a possibility to have a good time our variations and similarities.

At Buffer, we steadily proportion cultural spotlights from colleagues to attach our world group, and lend a hand us perceive one any other at a deeper point.

– Katie, Range, Fairness, Inclusion Supervisor @ Buffer

Right here’s a somewhat edited model of a cultural highlight we lately highlighted from Ben, a Buyer Recommend at Buffer.

I used to be born in Phuket, a small island in southern Thailand. Phuket is Thailand’s biggest island, is the second one smallest province within the nation, and has a inhabitants of 443,000. The island is a well-liked vacationer vacation spot widely recognized for its seashores.

A ship stationed on a Thai beach

Despite the fact that I used to be born in Thailand, I didn’t in reality develop up right here. My step dad labored for an oil corporate and on account of his process, we had the chance to commute and are living in different international locations. We left Thailand when I used to be 4 years outdated and moved again when I used to be 18. We lived in:

  • Shekou, China (for 2 years)
  • Lagos, Nigeria (for 9 years)
  • Leysin, Switzerland (for 12 months)
  • Cape The town, South Africa (for one  12 months)

Training and paintings

I studied hospitality and tourism control at college in Bangkok however best controlled to finish 12 months ahead of having to position my research on grasp. I did have a possibility a couple of years later to proceed my research however, at that time, I already had a number of years of labor revel in and I determined I sought after to proceed on my profession trail in hospitality.

I labored in hospitality for round 10 years ahead of transitioning to far off paintings for SaaS platforms (easiest determination ever).

Circle of relatives existence

Rising up, my circle of relatives consisted of me, my mom, my stepdad and my two more youthful half-siblings (a sister and a brother). My stepdad passed on to the great beyond whilst we had been residing in Nigeria. My mom and brother are living in Phuket and my sister lives in Winnipeg, Canada.

These days, my circle of relatives is made up of me and my spouse and our 3 canines. We are living in Nakhon Ratchasima which is in northeastern Thailand (about 4 hours clear of Bangkok).

Thailand’s historical past

In 1939, after a number of years of civil unrest, the federal government abolished absolutely the monarchy gadget and we followed a brand new constitutional monarchy. With this new alternate, the rustic modified its identify from Siam to Thailand. Thailand manner land of the loose (Tai or ไทย, is the Thai phrase without cost). Thai persons are very proud in their historical past and the truth that we’re one of the most few international locations within the area that wasn’t subjected to colonization (Eu rule).

These days, Thailand is fabricated from 77 provinces and has a inhabitants of 69.95 million. Round 95% of the inhabitants are Theravada Buddhists and the remainder 5% are Muslim, Christians, Confucians, Hindus, Sikhs, and Taoists. It’s quite common to seek out Buddhist temples, mosques, church buildings, and Sikh temples constructed subsequent to one another (and there typically isn’t any battle from this).

The authentic language of Thailand is Thai. There are 4 dialects of Thai (Central, Northern, Southern, and Northeastern or Isan). Each and every dialect sounds very other and since every is obscure, maximum Thai folks will talk the central dialect (the commonest dialect) simply to make issues more straightforward. Thai folks find it irresistible when foreigners take a look at to be told our language and are glad to take a little time to show you a couple of phrases. English isn’t an authentic language, however the general public you return throughout will be capable to talk some English.

The Thai alphabet advanced from the Khmer (Cambodian) alphabet and has 72 characters (this comprises 44 consonants and 28 vowels). I had moved out of the country when I used to be very younger so I didn’t get an opportunity to learn to learn and write Thai whilst rising up. I began studying learn and write when I used to be 18 and it took just about two years for me to be told it. I feel I best dedicated to studying it as a result of I didn’t wish to must carry my mother with me in every single place to translate stuff.

Thailand’s formative years literacy price is round 98 p.c. Lately, the federal government has labored exhausting to make certain that all youngsters in all portions of the rustic are ready to visit college (or that there’s a college close to them). Training is obligatory as much as the age of 14 and the federal government supplies loose schooling (in public colleges) via grade 12. Despite the fact that the general public college gadget supplies high quality schooling, most folks will paintings very exhausting to get their youngsters into non-public colleges and universities.

Vacations, Fairs, and Occasions

A mean Thai particular person works six  days per week for 9  hours an afternoon (that’s a 54 hour paintings week). An individual who has been of their process for 3  years or much less would have between six to 8  days of paid holiday time. The federal government has attempted to steadiness this out by means of giving folks extra public vacations. Lately, we’ve had 17 to 22 public vacations consistent with 12 months however employers are best legally required to supply their staff with 15 public vacations consistent with 12 months.

Maximum of our vacations are associated with Buddhist vacations/celebrations or are essential days associated with the monarchy. A very talked-about vacation (for Thai folks and vacationers) is our Songkran Water Pageant. Historically, we might sprinkle water on Buddhist statues and pour water over our oldsters’ palms, However this has advanced right into a full-blown water struggle within the streets. We’d usually have a good time Songkran for 3 to 5 days, however some puts in Thailand have a good time for a complete month (pre-covid).

A street festival in Thailand

Some other widespread pageant is Loy Krathong (it manner floating basket in Thai). We have a good time Loy Krathong at the evening of the total moon in November. We pay our respects to the water goddess by means of floating lotus-shaped baskets and liberating them into lakes, rivers, and the sea. The hampers are comprised of banana tree trunks and banana leaves and are full of flora, incense, candles, cash, a little of your hair, and your hopes and desires for the longer term.

Two individuals holding a candle lit decorated plate
Ben and his spouse celebrateing Loy Krathong

Folks were inspired to shop for eco-friendly baskets comprised of bread. And for any individual questioning, the hampers are typically gathered on the finish of the evening by means of youngsters in the neighborhood. They lend a hand do away with the waste and get to stay the cash from the hampers.

While you’re invited to a marriage, funeral, or ordination rite in Thailand, you’d usually display up on the match with an envelope of cash for the host. This perplexed me in the beginning (after I went to my first marriage ceremony) however then I spotted that this used to be our approach of serving to every different out with prices and bills for the development. When you confirmed as much as toughen somebody, you’ll ensure that they’ll display as much as your match to toughen you.


Thai meals could be very flavorful and is typically made with many various spices and herbs. Our meals is typically cooked in a pan, or a wok on prime warmth, and maximum of our dishes may also be made in no time (inside of 20-Half-hour or much less). The period of time it takes to cook dinner one thing like a turkey would marvel us.

Rice is a staple meals and is usually provide at each meal. A regular meal would come with 2-3 primary dishes shared circle of relatives taste and eaten with rice. We adore to mention that you simply gained’t in reality be complete except you devour your meals with rice.

A bowl of Thai curry

Some widespread dishes come with:

  • Pad thai – a stir fried noodle dish with tamarind sauce, bean sprouts, tofu, egg, peanuts, and shrimps.
  • Inexperienced rooster curry – a coconut curry made with inexperienced chilies, galangal, lemon grass, kafir lime leaves, and coriander.
  • Tom yum goong – a sizzling and bitter shrimp soup made with chilies, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, and lemongrass.
  • Som tum – highly spiced inexperienced papaya salad.
  • Mango with sticky rice – ripe mangoes over sticky rice lined with coconut milk.

Value of Dwelling

The minimal salary in Thailand is 353 Baht consistent with day or 10,590 Baht per thirty days (round $9.30 consistent with day or $278.94 per thirty days). A mean particular person in Bangkok running an entry-level place will make round 25,000 Baht per thirty days (round $658). When you’re a Thai particular person incomes this quantity, that is slightly sufficient. Over 85% of folks in Thailand have not up to 50,000 Baht (round $1,300) of their financial institution accounts and the general public are suffering to make ends meet.

A large number of Thai folks will finally end up casting off unlawful or sketchy loans with exorbitant rates of interest. The rates of interest for those loans can vary from 30-50 p.c  consistent with day. Because of this when you borrow $1,000, you’re compelled to pay $300-$500 consistent with day as passion (till the major quantity is paid off). The debt is crippling and it’s very exhausting to get out from beneath it. Thailand is an excessively reasonably priced nation and the price of residing isn’t prime – when you’re incomes a prime wage or are visiting from any other nation. However for the general public right here, in the event that they wish to have a just right high quality of existence, the price of residing may also be very prime.


Folks in Thailand are heat and inviting and love to unravel conflicts with out war of words. This can result in many fascinating conversations – consider two folks looking to unravel a subject with out immediately addressing the problem and frequently skirting across the root reason.

Crucial values that Thai folks grasp are recognize, self-discipline, and a non-confrontational angle. Shedding face by means of appearing anger or by means of telling a lie is a supply of significant disgrace for Thai folks. Social interactions also are much less formal and Thai folks love to way the whole lot with a “sabai sabai” mentality.

Sabai sabai is a mind-set that most often manner the whole lot occurs for a reason why and that the whole lot will figure out in spite of everything. It’s additionally like a reminder not to fear or rigidity an excessive amount of and to let cross of items we don’t have any keep an eye on over. It may be tough for us to keep up a correspondence how we in reality really feel about one thing, and I imagine this comes from our want to make certain that everybody saves face and that no person is angry. We’re additionally an excessively open and accepting tradition and we have a good time being other.

Amusing Details

The Thai Calendar is 543 years forward of the Gregorian calendar. It is the 12 months 2565 right here in Thailand.

We have a good time New 12 months’s in April (throughout Songkran).

The sale of alcohol is illegitimate on public vacations (which makes some folks marvel why we even hassle to name it a vacation).

Bangkok’s actual identify is Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Ayuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit (beautiful certain we grasp the arena report for longest identify of a spot).

Stepping on cash and riding with out a blouse is prohibited. However, riding with out pants is felony.

Thanks for studying! I’m hoping this will provide you with an concept of what Thailand and Thai persons are like.

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