When you arrive to Thailand. First thing if you notice is Thai way of greeting.
In Thai we say ” wai ไหว้ ” . This is one of Thai culture greeting you should know.
The way to do “wai” is :
raising both of their hands up and put it together .
Palm joined with the fingers. You place hand near chest.
Bend your head a bit down.
It is like Indian NAMASTE.
It is a way to show respect to older people. Normally the younger one will do “wai ไหว้”
to the older.
When people are greeting each other they will say “SA-WAD-DEE สวัสดี”
It can translate as Hello. You can say “SA-WAD-DEE สวัสดี” anytime when you meet any Thais.
It doesn’t matter if you meet in the morning ,afternoon or evening.
You can add the word ” Ka ค่ะ” (female speaker) or “krab ครับ (male speaker)
female : “sa-wad-dee ka” สวัสดีค่ะ
male : “sa-wad-dee krab” สวัสดีครับ
Wai ไหว้ has different level to hand to place. If you greeting to Thai people who is
same age as you or you are not sure how old are they just place your both hand in the area of chest.
Wai ไหว้ is not only use between the people .Thais also do “wai ไหว้” to the Statue of Buddha, to the monk and other things that we respect. Thailand is buddhist country so it also common to see Thai pay respect to the Statue of Buddha a lot . That is the highest respect thing in Thailand.
If you don’t want to do “wai ไหว้” as you are not Thai, make sure you say the word
“sa-wad-dee ka” สวัสดีค่ะ or “sa-wad-dee krab” สวัสดีครับ That also enough for greeting to Thais.
In case you go to visit the temple in Thailand. At least you know how to pay respect to the statue of Buddha.