Speak Thai in Thailand!
The longer you live and work Thailand, the better your Thai language skills become – or at least they should.
Of course, there are some people running around who have been here many years and speak and understand zero, but actually, the longer you stay in country, the better your Thai gets.
View this enlarged cartoon below:
It’s always great to use your Thai language abilities when conversing with the locals for several reasons:
1. Most likely your Thai is better than their English.
2. It signals to the Thai that you are a local and not an uninformed tourist.
3. This usually enables you to get a better price when buying goods.
4. You often get quite more respect for making the effort to use the local language.
But the ability to speak Thai can become frustrating when the Thai person and you disagree on something. Thais have their way of looking at things and often hide behind the many nuances and principles of Thai culture that are also an integral part of the Thai language. For this reason alone, I prefer to let my Thai wife and business partner taking care of the communication between our company and Thai staff…especially the builders! This way we avoid silly and expensive misunderstandings!
How is your Thai language?