Why are Uniforms an essential part of Thai life?

Uniforms give the wearers a sense of power

MattOwensRees and DeAnna D

This is the real reason for Uniforms

You will see scores of different uniforms when you are in Thailand. As elsewhere in the world, traffic police are those you notice most. To counter illegal immigration, police regularly have checkpoints on roads between major cities and near borders. Soldiers and police are also used to keep the ordinary Thais subservient to the elite.

Military uniforms and a video

On state occasions the military top brass, particularly the guards regiments, wear uniforms of varied colours. Click here to see the Coronation rehearsal. In the West, there is more similarity between their uniforms, with only minor differences to indicate a specific regiment.

Uniforms in ordinary life

Nurses in hospitals wear white as in most other countries. Bank employees are often dressed in accordance with the bank’s own dress code or a uniform specific to that bank. Factory workers, particularly in Japanese owned companies, wear a company uniform or are fitted out in the company’s colours. Unlike the Thai, the Japanese have a penchant for conformity.

Local and central government officers have uniforms, the formal dress uniform is of white and is worn with decorations appropriate to rank on special occasions and at public events. A village headman (pooyaibaan), who everyone would know and recognise, would only wear his white outfit at important events.

These dress uniforms with their epaulets and rows of decoration ribbons look most impressive. They are worn of course to show rank, status and to impress.

The pooyaibaan of this village promised to get me a white uniform, though added I had to be in Thailand for a further 100 years to qualify. Thai humour.

School and College Uniforms

Schoolchildren and college students adhere to a strict dress code, usually white blouse and black skirt for girls and white shirt and black trousers for boys. Most students (girls anyway) will wash and iron their uniforms each night as they may have only one set. Teachers and university staff will wear their white uniforms during special dates in the school or university calendar. Academic gowns, some of which are very colourful, are worn at degree ceremonies.

Thailand is different from the West in many ways.

Security staff at shopping malls, car park attendants at restaurants, and also guards at banks will wear uniforms, open doors for you, and salute you.

All my stories on Thailand are posted only after personal observation, research, and discussion with a wide range of Thais. They are not conspiracy theories or unaudited comments. All are well sourced.



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I am a published author on Thai events and how Thais actually live under feudalism. My books are available in eBook and print format. I also publish on Substack