Bangkok - Post Report Question and Answers

Are there problems with ethnic, race/racial minorities or religious prejudices? Gender equality?

No, the Thais are a very open people. - Jan 2023

Thailand has its Buddhist nationalists and Muslim extremists in pockets. Buddhism is also the official state religion and there are rules that limit what can be said against Buddhism, and what other religions can do. But in general, Thailand is very tolerant and progressive, especially if compared to most other countries in the region. This goes for gender equality, too, yes, there are definitely more traditional segments of Thai culture, and the security forces, Buddhist clergy, and "the revered institution" are quite patriarchal in many ways, but on a day-to-day basis I don't think this is a problem for expats. If anything, because the expat community is so large here, you may find that any prejudices or equality issues are ones exported from expats' own homelands to Bangkok rather than coming from Thais. - May 2022

None that I've heard of. Thai people seem very open to all beliefs. - Aug 2019

I am not aware of any problems. - Jun 2018

Generally, no. - Aug 2014

As an expat female, no direct problems. But watching the old slimey men grab on the (often very) young Thai women in the streets is very frustrating and takes a toll. While there are problems between the majority-Muslim South and the majority-Buddhist North, you don't see such problems on the surface in a day-to-day environmnet in the city of Bangkok. - May 2014

Yes. We have witnessed racism time and time again. Men are treated like kings here as well-single or married they are pursued, it makes little difference. Women often complain that they feel invisible, but are not harassed. - Jul 2013

None that I have experienced or heard about. - Jun 2013

Thais tend to be very open. There is more a sense of class discrimination, rather than racial discrimination. - Jul 2012

I did have one black friend who had a hard time. Like many places in the world Thais aim to be lighter skinned and use bleach, etc. - Oct 2011

Religion: As far as I can see, there are no problems. Gender: The PM is female, and females are strongly represented throughout most walks of life. No issues, I think. Race: I wouldn't know, really. I have never come across any racial discrimination against westerners. But just as Americans laugh at Canadians, and the English laugh at the Welsh, they love a good laugh at Laotians! - Aug 2011

Not that I can tell, but some expats who are of darker skin complexions have reported not being treated as well as whites. - Jul 2011

Well, being a Western man seems to get you better service in general than, say, being a Western woman. - Feb 2011

Thais speak openly about darker skin as less desirable. You'll see whitening cream heavily advertised. They joke about everything including their friends' skin tone or weight which can be uncomfortable or downright insulting to an American. But we try to remember things are different here. - May 2010

This is my biggest disappointment. I've seen several Thais disrespect people of darker skin tones. They care very much about status and it seems to them that foreigners with darker skin must be of a lower income bracket. As a result they are not treated as well as their white counterparts. I've seen African Americans laughed at as they walk past and heard them make disrespectful comments. If have very dark skin I would really think about if you have "thick skin" as racial prejudices are commonplace here. Bummer for such an amazing city. - Apr 2010

none that i have seen or are aware of - Jan 2010

Not that we've ever witnessed and/or heard of. - Jul 2009

As with anywhere else in the world, the darker you are, the more issues you have. Religions are all accepted. - Apr 2009

People respect money and the guys in power are rich thugs. The poor here are ingnored too much (but I feel that is also a huge issue in the US). - Feb 2009

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