Many Canadians meeting Thai women are younger and are more likely to be interested in modern contemporary and equal relationships.
Despite Canada being ranked No. 2 in one survey of Thai women on ThaiLovelines as a foreign destination in 2009,
Thai immigrants into Canada tend to be the professional classes rather than young women seeking work. This is likely
due to distance and climate, although there is a growth in the number of young Canadian men who visit Thailand and
return with a Thai wife. There are several associations in Canada to help Thai immigrants to integrate into the
community and learn the language, culture and customs of Canada.
Canadians seek educated Thai partners
Canadians appear selective in their overseas partners, particularly with respect to their Thai wives. Unlike the
Europeans and Oceanics that marry Thai women for their beauty and attentiveness, Canadian men appear to be more
selective in terms of their spouse's intellectual capabilities, are more likely to live and work in Thailand before
finding a Thai partner often on a professional level. Figures from Thai marriage registration offices show that the average median age of Canadians marrying Thai women is lower than for men from other Western countries in particular the USA.
This does not necessarily mean that Canadian men do not seek Thai brides for their beauty and their famed respect
and attention for their husbands, only that they prefer women on an equal intellectual basis as themselves. In fact,
they will likely find that their wife is more than capable of handling herself intellectually and that she will make
an excellent business partner. Thai women have their heads screwed on the right way, and understand business.
One Canadian ex-pat who lives in Thailand and works in the media business told ThaiLoveLines: 'Canadians like to
visit Thailand are seriously interested in the culture and also of course, the beautiful Thai women but most are not
like some western men easily taken by some sexy young Thai woman who is capable of passing her boyfriend off as her
brother and make as much as they can from their besotted partner before disappearing into the twilight...and I'm not
kidding! Most regular women in Thailand are nothing like this of course, but I watch out for bar girls professing
love! Some might be genuine, but you should make sure and even then I'd need convincing, because many girls in the
sex trade will take all they can from you before returning home back to their boyfriends and waiting for the next
'farang' to trick! Most Canadians are a bit more careful, I know friends with smashing Thai partners, many now living
Most commentators agree: get the right woman and you will have a wife that will devote herself to you and your
happiness. By choosing professional young Thai women, Canadian men are inadvertently making sure that their choice
of partner is less likely to be one of the minority that will take advantage of them. One aspect of Thai society that
can lead to a misunderstanding of this type is in connection with the Thai social organization.
In Thailand, family is important, and even when referring to aunts, uncles and cousins, their terminology refers
to the side of the family concerned and to the ages of the respective relatives. Courtship and the marriage ceremony
will also be strange to Canadian men, and marrying a Thai woman is not the same as marrying a western woman in a
There are many customs involved in Thai marriages, such as that the approval of the parents of both bride and
groom must be received before the marriage can proceed, and it is often custom in rural areas for the couple to live
in the bride's parents' home, and not seek their own home until the next daughter is wed. Obviously, such customs do
not lie well with western men and many such traditions are changing and being ignored as Thailand becomes
Thais do not generally immigrate to Canada
Although the number of Canadian men marrying Thai women is growing, it is strongly controlled by Canadian
immigration regulations which are stringent. This level of immigration is a new development driven by more world
travel by Canadians and internet dating. Whether it is due to the climate or for some other reason, Thais did not in
the past immigrate to Canada in the same numbers as they did to the USA, Australia, New Zealand and Europe. Most
Thais traditionally visited Canada to be educated or take up a professional position. Canada has not, therefore, had
the same tradition with an influx of young Thai female workers as New Zealand does, or the relatively high volume of
Thai brides experienced in Holland, Germany and Switzerland.
Even today many Thais who move to Canada tend to return after their period of study or when their work contract
has expired. Where there are Thai communities, they tend to be focused in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and
Alberta, with very few in other provinces. It is estimated that there are roughly only 4,000 Thai people living in
Canada, with most of these being educated professionals or business persons.
There has been a fairly recent demand for young Thai nannies, many of whom have had problems integrating into the
local community. However, where they exist, Thai groups or communities have gathered round to help them. There are
also a few that enter the country as entertainers and night club artists, while some are also illegally brought in
for other purposes.
Thai immigrants and Thai associations in Canada
There are several types of Thai associations in Canada that help new immigrants that require it. Unless young Thai
people enter Canada as wives of Canadian nationals, it is often difficult for them to get used to western culture.
They also tend to have language difficulties, particularly in French-speaking communities.
A number of these associations exist with the primary purpose of helping other Thais settle in Canada, and help
educate them in western culture and Canadian ways. Although most Thai eventually make friends with Canadian work
colleagues and neighbours, it still takes time for them to adjust to the sudden culture shock.
Among these associations are the Thai Associations of British Columbia, the Friends of Thailand and the Thai
Association of Canada that now focuses on Ontario. The Friends of Thailand relate mainly to Vancouver, with a
newsletter available to subscribers in all parts of Canada, and the association also permits any non-Thais to join
that are married to a Thai.
These associations help young women entering Canada with their new husbands to learn English or French, and to
learn the main differences between Canadian and Thai customs and culture. The Thai Buddhist Association has a temple
just outside Toronto, and helps to maintain the traditional Buddhist faith among Canadian Thais.
It is evident then, that while many Canadian men do visit Thailand and return with their new Thai brides, this
does not affect regional culture as much as in other countries because the percentage of Thais entering the country
is relatively low in comparison to many European countries and others closer to Asia.
Nevertheless, there are Thai communities in Canada that look after their own, and most young Thai women entering
Canada as the wives of Canadians can seek help from one or other of these groups, and so find it easier to integrate
into their local community in terms of language, social communication and religion. These are very important aspects
of traditional Thai culture that should not be ignored by Canadians that take Thai women as wives.