I came to Thailand two years ago as a single woman.
I was just after my divorce and wasn’t particularly experienced in dating. During my first month here I was doing my TEFL course and I was totally focused on that and wasn’t looking for any adventures.
I started being more interested in men after I finished the course and had a 2 month break.
Maybe it was boredom, or maybe I was just curious. Whatever it might have been, I’ve learned quite a lot of the years.
Many expat women are convinced that it is hard to meet men in Thailand.
One of my friends always says that men here seek the company of Thai women and are not very interested in dating western girls.
I have mixed feelings about that statement.
I have spent 2 years in Thailand and during that time I’ve had my fair share of dates and adventures.
All I can say is: dating and relationships here are much different than dating in your home country and there are many ways to meet men.
How to meet men in Thailand?
Expats like to hang out in their own groups.
I’ve noticed that after a while being an expat you develop an aversion to tourists and backpackers and you are naturally drawn to those, who lead the same lifestyle as yours.
In Chiang Mai the expat scene is quite small, therefore you end up spending time with the same people. It is pretty easy to have an affair with someone, or to even find true love here.
In Chiang Mai there are a few interest groups that meet on a weekly basis, such as Couchsurfing, Internations and Language Exchange.
Bars and Clubs
Like everywhere else in the world good places to meet men in Thailand are bars and clubs.
In Chiang Mai we have our favourite spots where you usually meet other expats. Because of the current visa restrictions people are now coming and going more often and the chances of meeting someone new and interesting are higher.
Dating apps and sites
I met my boyfriend through dating online.
It was fun reading about people and then meeting them in person.
I met a couple of guys that became my friends, some I had a ‘short episode’ with, and some of them were just pure weirdos, but they became anecdotes I tell people to make them laugh.
One thing women need to remember about using these sort of sites is that most of the time people there are looking for a hook up, not for something permanent.
Why is dating in Thailand different for white women?
Depending on what kind of a person you are and what you are looking for, dating in Thailand for women can be great, but also can turn into a real nightmare.
Your date can quickly become your best friend and someone you spend a majority of your time with.
There are plenty of digital nomads in Thailand, who travel around the world
We have many teachers here and other people who spend a lot of time in the Land of Smiles.
All of them are far away from their families, looking for friends.
There are plenty of examples of people, who meet one way or another, have a hot and steamy relationship and then just become good friends and end up hanging out together all the time. Sometimes it is another way round – they are friends first and then become lovers.
Dating in Thailand for women is also very casual. Going on a date here doesn’t mean that you have to put on a pair of heels and dress up. Because Thailand has a very laid back ambiance, everyone wears casual summer clothes, so a nice summer dress and sandals are always a good choice.
Forget fancy restaurants.
In Chiang Mai most people choose bars as date venues. There are a lot of options to choose from. You can go to the Irish Pub, which has a nice garden at the back and can be considered as a romantic place, or Sudsanan, with live music and a really laid back atmosphere.
Women in Thailand who are looking for a long-term relationship should be warned – Thailand is not the best place to look for a guy.
First of all, both women and men come to Thailand only for a bit, be it a year, or 6 months, or 2 weeks.
There are of course those, who end up staying here for years, but those are exceptions, or already have Thai partners.
Dating in Thailand for girls is definitely more for those, who are not looking for anything serious and are happy with a casual relationship. Of course, serious relationships do happen (I’m a good example), but it is better not to hope for anything more than just a fling.
I noticed that many people (not all, mind you), who come here don’t know what to do with their lives and have a great emotional baggage.
Someone, who seems like a nice guy can turn into a real nightmare after just a few dates. And ladies, let’s face it, we all have issues and ours are enough to keep us occupied. You don’t want to end up solving someone else’s problems. Just stay vigilant and listen to your guts.
Thai men vs western men
I don’t have a great experience with Thai guys. I have never had a Thai boyfriend, so I’m not really an expert. However, there are a couple of things I noticed about Thai men.
It is not true that Thai guys are not interested in caucasian women. Especially the younger generation finds them attractive. I was chatted up by handsome and cute Thai men many times. The fact that there is often a language barrier, that Thais are very shy and think that we have more money than them, stops them from approaching western women.
If you are in Chiang Mai go to Warm Up Cafe on a Saturday night. It is pretty easy to meet Thai men there. They are much braver when they are a little drunk.
Thai guys often chat you up in a very causal, friendly way and it is very easy to be confused: is he hitting on me, or is he just being friendly? They do it in a much different way than western men, much more gentle and not so pushy. My feeling is that they also prefer girls, who are a bit shy, not loud and not too talkative.
You need to have a decent amount of patience, if you want to date a Thai man. They seem to want the woman to pursue them.
However, if you fancy them (and they are attractive, I must admit) then be patient and I’m sure you will find a nice Thai boy to go on a date with.
In my opinion many western men have much to learn from Thais. Thai men have that gentleness about them and they seem mysterious at the same time. It makes such a difference when a guy is a gentleman, polite and doesn’t send you a dick pic straight after a first date.
Don’t come to Thailand if you are looking for a relationship – that’s my advice.
Come here if you want to meet new people and have fun. Don’t have any expectations. If you are meant to find someone special, you will and in the meantime enjoy what this beautiful country has to offer.
Don’t believe those, who claim that a Caucasian woman can’t find a partner here.
Yes, there are many men that look for Thai women and would only date them, but it is very easy to find someone to date short – term, or to hook up with. Use the dating apps, go out to bars and clubs and have lots of fun.
Appreciate Thai men too, not only their western counterparts. Thai guys are lovely, polite and gentle, and can make a woman smile all the time. Just give them a little bit more time to approach you and invite you on a date.
Joanna Szreder was born and brought up in Poland, and spent 10 years in London, working various administration jobs. Three years ago she decided to kiss 9-5 goodbye and move to Thailand full time. Teaching English in Chiang Mai helped her to kickstart her slow travel journey in Southeast Asia. She writes about her experiences and adventures on her blog: The Blond Travels.