Marko's guide for newbies

Ten top tips for new teachers arriving in Thailand

New teachers teaching Thais in schools are often placed into an awkward and stressful situation, not really sure of their authority and sometimes not even placed with assistants who are much help


TIT - life insurance

Misconceptions about life insurance sold in Thailand

One expat forum contributor claimed that the Thai government was using a tax deduction to get people to buy life insurance that the Thai government knew was overpriced. Strangers in a strange land can really say some stupid things on these forums.


Surviving Thailand's roads

How to avoid becoming just another statistic

Most Thais do not have any understanding or desire to learn road safety. If you grew up in my generation you had Tufty and his gang drilling the green cross code into your brain, and those lessons never get forgotten as the years pass by.


On fatalism and choice

East versus West

People in Thailand have a more fatalistic view of life than people in the west do. This view may seem odd to most westerners, especially to Americans, who believe that they should do their best to control the vicissitudes of life.


How to talk to foreigners in Thailand

We don't bite. Well, a handful might I suppose.

Put simply, if the foreigner clearly knows what they're doing, can order a round of food with minimal problems and pay the right money when presented with the bill, you don't need to talk down to them.


Thais and speaking English

Postbox letter from Steve

In Thailand they have a genuine disinterest to talk and communicate with foreigners. They're generally not eager to learn about other cultures. They are closed. Why? who knows. Maybe its because its a big country that houses everything that you'll ever need in your lifetime.


Fear of change?

Why the reluctance to adopt English as an official language in Thailand?

In Thailand the government has set 2012 as English Speaking Year with a goal of encouraging students to converse in English every Monday. Such policies are useful but the major leap of enacting legislation to make English an official language for Thailand is also needed


The chalkies need a real change

Postbox letter from Mr Grumpy

Nothing can prepare the foreign teacher for the employee-to-management-to-admin staff life. Dealing with these matters can drive the most experienced teachers up the wall and can turn a normally friendly teacher into a paranoid wreck!


A cultural curveball

Just when you think you know most things about Thai culture

Having lived in Thailand more than twenty years, one likes to think themselves as au fait with most aspects of Thai culture, and then some innocuous situation develops and you're left wondering if you truly know the first thing about Thai culture at all.


It's a lawless land

Who can you complain to in Thailand when you've been truly wronged?

This is a country where I'm convinced you have to let many incidents go and chalk them up to experience. Pursuing things ‘legally' and going down what you feel are the appropriate channels will just lead to frustration and despair. This is Thailand. It's a lawless land.


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