Public Affection In Thailand: What Is Acceptable And What Isn’t

Public displays of affection are commonplace in the Western world. In public, you’ll frequently see couples hugging and holding hands. When they witness this in public, no one even blinks. It is thought to be perfectly normal. However, despite many Westerners’ perceptions of Thailand as the world’s sex metropolis, Thai tradition frowns on public shows of affection.

Even bar girls in Thailand are uncomfortable with very showy affection. Kissing in public is frowned upon and considered impolite. Couples holding hands have become more common in Thailand as the country has become more westernized.

So what is it like when you display public affection in Thailand? To learn more about this Thai dating culture, read on, and we’ll provide you with a detailed explanation of what public affection is like in Thailand.

Here’s What You Need To Know

you are out in public. This may appear to a Western man as if she has lost interest in you, but it is a respectful gesture for Thai women. If a Thai lady displays public affection with a Western man in most places in Thailand, people will think of her as an escort and you as her client. For obvious reasons, she would want to avoid these judgments at all costs. But what’s remarkable is that in some regions of Thailand, it’s common to see two women holding hands since they are friends and thus allowed to express affection for one another. 

On the other hand, kissing on the lips has only started to be featured in Thai films and TV shows. Because the Thai actress does not want to be seen kissing, she frequently has a double who performs the kissing.

So, what are the essential tips and tricks for couples in Thailand? Thais are accustomed to international visitors, especially on famous islands like Koh Samui. While they’re a forgiving bunch, learning fundamental Thai cultural and traditional values will do you a world of good.

1. Long courtship

Thai people value patience in all aspects of life, and dating is no exception. As a result, dating a Thai girl will not be passionate, surprising, or fast-paced. Thai females enjoy courting for a long time, so if you want this lady to be yours, you must be patient and resolute.

For example, whereas the third date in Western culture is when you may expect to have sex with a lady, a third date with a Thai female will only result in a kiss on the cheek.

Of course, the amount of time needed to pursue such a woman varies depending on the girl, and some girls do not make their partners wait that long. If you’re dating a Thai girl from a respectable family, though, you’ll have to wait a while before your relationship progresses.

2. No PDA

People frown upon public displays of affection in Thailand. Although you may see couples embracing, holding hands, and kissing in public, a Thai woman from a decent family is unlikely to be acting like that in public. Of course, Thailand is not a nation where embracing and holding hands with your lover in public might get you into trouble. However, due to the peculiarities of Thai dating culture, she probably won’t be pleased if you try to embrace or hug her on the street or in any other public setting. So put it away till you’re alone with your Thai girlfriend.

To understand more, below is a list of the types of public affection in Thailand that you need to be mindful of.

  • Kissing – In large cities like Bangkok and Phuket, a kiss on the cheek in public usually is acceptable, and so is a kiss on the lips. Since so many foreigners live and vacation in the area, these areas have adopted some western habits. If you don’t want to draw a crowd’s attention, though, you shouldn’t overdo the kissing.
  • Embracing – You can embrace someone to say hello and farewell as this is acceptable. On the other hand, long, romantic hugs are uncommon in most areas since Thais have their form of greeting one other, known as the “Wai.” It’s a modest bow with your hands in a prayer-like gesture. This is something you should do if you want to impress your Thai date. Alternatively, if someone does it to you, you should reciprocate.
  • Touching – It is acceptable to hold hands in Thailand’s streets. It’s also okay if your partner wants to interlock their arms with yours. You should, however, avoid being overly touchy in public. In a public location, it’s best never to touch your date’s leg. Other folks find it too distressing to watch.
  • Snuggling – In Thailand, people frown upon snuggling in public. You should never do it in a movie theater, on the beach, or in a shopping mall. Hugging your lover for an extended time is likewise inappropriate. People, especially the elders, will simply glare at you and say, “Get a room.”

3. Body language and non-verbal interaction

As previously stated, Thai dating is quite tranquil and pleasant, so non-verbal interaction and body language are important. In truth, many Thai beauty queens are expert body language interpreters.

These ladies can tell if you enjoy the date or want it to be over as quickly as possible. Furthermore, these ladies can tell if you like them or are just pretending to. So, if you want a Thai woman to like you, keep an eye on your body language, especially when you’re on a date with her.

4. Respect their cultural and traditional values

Fortunately, Thais have already abandoned the custom of planned marriages. Furthermore, to marry this individual, modern Thais do not even require their parents’ permission. At the same time, many Thai women adhere to their cultural norms and do not marry any men who do not have their families’ approval.

So, if you intend to marry your Thai girlfriend in the future, you’ll need to do everything you can to make her parents accept you. You must also explore at least the principles of Thai culture and respect your partner’s traditions.

3 Tips for Dating A Thai Girl

Getting involved with a Thai woman entails putting forth a lot of effort. You should work on and avoid a few things, especially when it comes to physical closeness. Here are a few pointers on how to go about doing it correctly:

1. Be a gentleman

This suggestion might sound like a cliche. However, it is unquestionable that everyone, including Thais, may be captivated by a gentleman. The truth is that this characteristic never goes out of style, and it could be your ally in courting a Thai woman. To love Thais, you must adapt to their traditions and culture. This implies that giving the ladies the finest possible treatment is at the top of the priority list.

2. Always make an effort with your date

Thais are grateful people. They appreciate it when you put effort into something. There are two ways to demonstrate your appreciation for them:

  • Be presentable – Whether you’re meeting your Thai partner for the first time or are on your second or third date, you must always put out effort with the way you look. Always plan ahead of time and consider what outfit you should wear. When you’re with your Thai lover, you should avoid dressing up like every other foreign man visiting Thailand. Always strive to make an impression on her by cleaning and dressing up. Most importantly, don’t go out on your first date wearing a sleeveless shirt and shorts.
  • Make your dates a memorable one – Take your date to a venue that is interesting, exciting, and romantic. Steer clear from clubs and bars for a first date as it will only make her believe she’s just another Thai girl to you, and she’d feel insignificant.

3. Don’t rush things

Understandably, it can take a lot of effort, especially when public affection in Thailand is still being frowned upon, but it’s also important that you don’t rush things with your Thai girl. You’ll need a lot of patience if you’re dating someone from Thailand. Most Thai women dislike men who are very aggressive in their love lives. They don’t want you to be in a hurry to find love. Take it slow by getting to know her and her culture. And keep in mind that you are both from different backgrounds, so it’s also essential to respect each other’s views and values to have a long-lasting relationship.


For Westerners, Thai dating culture is somewhat odd, and you will undoubtedly be puzzled by some of the traditions. So, if you want to date a gorgeous Thai, keep in mind these handy tips!

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