A Thailand romance survival guide for travelers

There are lots of single guys who travel to Thailand, either in groups or on their own. It’s a great place to strike up some holiday romance, or even find a long-term partner. But before you strike out to meet girls in Thailand you have to know what you’re doing or you’re almost certainly going to get into trouble of some kind.

There are lots of ways to meet girls in Thailand, and sometimes you don’t even have to try. Just stay in the right hotel and tip the taxi driver or the porter a little too well and you might find a pretty girl knocking on your door before you’ve even had time to unpack … “massage mister?” … but it helps to know what you’re getting into before you say yes.

Shopping centres can be good places to meet single girls in Thailand

You might also find that when you wander down to the hotel bar for that “free welcome drink”, there’ll be some pretty Thai girls hanging around there who’ll be keen to get to know you … “buy me a drink?” … what do they want? Well, chances are they’re either killing time waiting for their boyfriend or husband to meet them (usually another westerner), or they’re paying the house to allow them to hawk their wares with the guests (do I have to be blunt?). Either way, there’s a good chance you’ll burn a few thousand Baht in drinks before you discover the answer.

So where does a guy go to meet girls in Thailand? That’s the question, isn’t it? Aren’t there any singles bars where the real Thai girls hang out waiting to meet real guys? Sure there are, but good luck finding them if you don’t know where to look. The bars in Bangkok, Phuket and Chiang Mai (and most other tourist spots in Thailand) are usually full of girls waiting to meet guys, but not necessarily for the right reasons. If you want to know more about these Thai girls, take a look at Girls in Chiang Mai, Girls in Pattaya and Girls in Phuket for details of where to find them and what’s likely to happen when you do.

Find the cheapest flights to Thailand on TripAdvisor…

If you’re young and good looking, and have plenty of time on your hands, you can start by hanging around in the big shopping centres (Big C, Carrefour, Tesco, Panthip Plaza, etc). Single Thai girls (who are not in the male entertainment game) LOVE to shop, especially for clothes. They go shopping in giggly groups of three or four and because they’re in numbers, they really don’t mind stopping to chat to a cute western guy. But you might find you’ll have to meet the parents and get their approval before you can do more than buy them a coffee. Look for eye contact, then make your best move. But keep in mind these girls may not speak much English, if any at all. So have a few words of Thai handy to impress them with.

Useful Thai phrases when meeting Thai girls

  • Koon sway mak mak” means “You’re very beautiful”, or maybe just “Koon naruk mak mak” which means “You’re very cute”.
  • Hob koon ka” means “thank you”, which you hope is going to be what she says back to you.
  • If she comes back with “Pak waan“, it means “sweet mouth” and indicates she’s flirting with you.
  • If she says “Mai ao” it means she’s rejecting your approach, she literally doesn’t want it.
  • Koon me faen mai” is a way to ask if she has a boyfriend. Hopefully she’ll answer “mai chai“, which means “no I don’t”.
  • You might respond by saying “Pom yung sot“, meaning “I’m single too”.
  • To ask her out, try “Keun nee jer gun dai mai“, meaning “Are you free tonight?”. Hopefully, she’ll answer “Wang“, and not “Mai wang“.
  • When you get to know her a little bit, try calling her “tirak“, but make sure you’re serious first because she’ll think you are!
  • And if you are serious, you can say “Pom rak koon“, meaning “I love you”. But only if you’re serious.
  • If you get to a point where you want to go, but keep your options open, you can say “Faan dee“, which means “sweet dreams” and is a form of goodbye. She’ll expect a call from you the next day.

Scouting for dates with Thai girls

One of the better places to scout for a date are the cafes, bars and food halls around the universities. There are lots of single Thai girls who are living away from home, attending university, so they have a lot more freedom of choice to go on a date without their parents’ approval. Lots of these university girls have high aspirations, which can often include scoring a foreign boyfriend or husband.

Songkran (Thai New Year) offers many opportunities to meet and chat to Thai girls

Of course you can always try hanging around the bars and cafes near the beach fronts, as there are usually lots of foreign girls looking for guys. But they’re just about as hard to meet and get to know on holidays as they are at home. Still, you might be luckier than me. I seemed to get luckier as the night wore on, but I’m sure you know how that usually works out.

Steer clear of the girly bars, go-go bars and beer bars unless you want to pay for your pleasure (aka “P2P”). But the night clubs can be good places to meet Thai girls, just as they are in most countries.

If you want to set something up before you go to Thailand (and a lot of people do just that), the Internet is the way to go. There are about 10 million Thai girls using the Internet now and a hell of a lot of them are single, looking for love with a western guy (and usually for the right reasons). You might need to learn some Thai phrases before you jump online, but Google Translate is your best friend.

For more detailed guides to meeting girls in Thailand, check out:

The Thai girlfriend scam

All is not always as it seems. Check out this video from Travel + Escape where a Thai girl talks to Conor about the Thai girlfriend scam.

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  • fred raventhall

    Your Thai phrases are going to get some poor bastard laughed out of the bar! “Koon sway mak mak” .. the “sway” is more like “suay”, the tone matters but they will get it. But not if you say “sway”.
    Excuse me is not “Hob kun ka”, it is “Kop kun ka” unless th guy is saying it. Then say “Krap” (with the “r” pretty silent) instead of “Ka” at the end. The rest is close enough. But the real important one is “Mai pen rai” ! When it all gets pear shaped, mai pen rai, (oh well, nevermind).

    • Thank you for those clarifications Fred. I don’t pretend to be able to speak Thai myself, so I rely on what others tell me. I will look at some updates based on your suggestions.

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  • I don't leave a response, but I browsed a few of the comments on How to meet girls in Thailand – Thailand travel blog | Thailand travel tips. I do have a couple of questions for you if it's allright.

    Could it be only me or does it give the impression like some of the comments look like they are left by brain dead people? 😛 And, if you are posting on other places, I would like to keep up with you.

    Could you make a list of every one of your public pages like your twitter feed, Facebook page or linkedin profile?