What not to do in Thailand if You are an Expat – Losing Face and Saving Face


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#Losingface #Thailandexpat #Thailandface
Losing face in Thailand definitely falls under the category of, “What not to do if you are an expat in Thailand.” Face value is very important in Thailand. Saving face is just as important. If you embarrass a Thai citizen in any way, you may cause them to, “Lose face.” Losing face basically means to embarrass a Thai citizen, which affects their reputation. If they are embarrassed, they will lose some of their social status. This is a part of the Thai culture that is usually unknown to foreigners. This is very bad for Thailand expats. Do not make this mistake. If you cause a Thai to lose face, you can be legally charged with a crime. The penalty for this can be hefty fines, jail time, or deportation. The Thai’s take their reputation very seriously. Their Face value is their reputation. If you cause the loss of a Thai’s reputation, it will not end well for you. This concept of’ “Losing face” is common throughout Southeast Asia. The way to avoid losing face is to have a one-on-one conversation with the Thai citizen. Do not raise your voice. Do not argue in public. Additionally, even if you are correct, and they are wrong, they will lose face. You will still lose. The consequences of proving to be correct are just not worth the sense of pride you may feel. To my fellow Thailand expats, please be humble at all times, and never make a Thai, “Lose face.” Saving face in Thailand is very important. Your goal, as an expat in Thailand should be to save face at all times.

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4 comments

  1. Great advice.
    I have seen a lot in the brief time I was in Pattaya but YES a 1st-day tourist or a long stay ex-pat – Keep your voice down. Don’t argue, and walk away.
    I prevented an altercation at a bar when I saw some tourist arguing about the Bill. He was getting louder and louder and more and more Thais were getting closer and closer… he yelled that they ripped him off for 200 ! I QUIETLY asked him “You mean Thai Baht?” he said “Yeah Man !”
    I quickly checked on my phone and showed him ” I said dude that’s not even 7 dollars in USA money”
    he muttered “OMG your right sorry everyone” his friends finally showed up and helped him home.

  2. What are the consequences in Thailand for getting caught flipping the middle finger to someone in public?
    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, and I hope you have a spectacular New Year!🎄

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