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Thailand’s “problem foreigners” who don’t wear masks. Really?! | VIDEO

Tim Newton



UPDATE: Even the Thai PM has been fined for not wearing a mask at a meeting at Government House yesterday.

Phuket’s vice governor has stirred the pot by singling out, what he described as, “problem foreigners” who weren’t wearing their mask in public. Over the past week there has been renewed attention to the wearing of masks at all times even though it’s actually been part of Thailand’s emergency decree since April last year. And while there has been wide use of masks over the last year there may have been a dropping off of serious mask wearing at all times in recent months.

But, I have to say, the VAST majority of all people in Thailand have been wearing their masks whilst in public over the past year.

There are a few problem foreigners. There are also plenty of problem Thais who have occasionally erred in the mask-wearing department. The intentional, and malicious non wearing of masks, has been very rare in Thailand. But, really, we’re talking about a tiny percentage. I haven’t seen too many foreign Karen’s or the male equivalent in my travels.

If you want to talk about the non-wearing of masks, just look at the pub and club scene over the past few months. In just about all the photos of parties and club events the battle is to find anyone actually wearing a mask.


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  1. Avatar


    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 8:40 pm

    I was thinking exactly this the other day. When out (yes I am wearing a mask) I have not seen one foreigner NOT wearing a mask in public. But I I’ve seen many many many of my local Thai neighbours locals. Go figure! Maybe he meant to say problem locals Just a slip of the xenophobic tongue maybe?

  2. Avatar


    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    Not all foeigners are problem but! Many of them think they are superior race! Many of them doing things they will not do in their own
    Country .but when they are in thailand they look down to rules. Stop compare Thailand with your own country .follow the rules what they are request from you. Noting much just a mask ka…

  3. Avatar


    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 9:22 pm

    Thais always looking to place blame on others and ignoring their far more contributions to all problems. Everyone knows that dishonesty, lying and deception is in the Thai DNA.

  4. Avatar

    Sobhy Fouad

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 9:23 pm

    Very well said Tim

  5. Avatar

    John Hamer

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 9:36 pm

    All I can say is thank you Tim.

  6. Avatar

    Ian Jones

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 10:29 pm

    Great video Tim, big thanks!

  7. Avatar


    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 10:44 pm

    The real reason for keeping up the Songkran was to secure the annual shower to all us dirty farangs. Worth the thousands of unnecessary Covid cases? Apparently so!

  8. Avatar


    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 10:59 pm

    Well said Tim, very much to the point.

  9. Avatar

    Peter Notley

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 11:28 pm

    Well said Tim !

  10. Avatar

    Fred Johnson

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 12:08 am

    always easier and better to blame and whine at foreigners who they then dream of coming back with money they so desperately need, time to reach out as a foreigner and show who is in most need of whom. Or?

  11. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 12:36 am

    Masks are only worn during the day. At night the party went on without a mask.

  12. Avatar

    Steve McCorriston

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 12:38 am

    Walked along Jomtien Beach today. 50/50 foreighner and Thai not wearing masks. Always same people.Same on baht bus,when someone complains about not wearing mask person will say I have asthma and can not breathe,but happy to breathe on others on bus.

  13. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 1:07 am

    @Nu – I think the current problems are caused by THAI people not wearing masks? Don’t blame the foreigners when the Thai people are the ones not wearing masks and spreading Covid.

  14. Avatar

    Paul gibson

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 1:27 am

    @Nu – @Nu – nu best for u to shut up and get your fact right and your stupid government stop blaming other people for the mess your government got u in to so best stop slagging off foriegnors and u will never have foriegnors in your country again I just hope u never get foriegnors in thailand again because u thai deserve everything u get no foriegnors dont look down on rules they look down at people like u at why u.k are in front of u backward country like thailand

  15. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 4:10 am

    How many of the recent upsurge in Covid cases have been attributed to farangs? Not many, if any. As for Phuket, which is supposedly trying to attract overseas tourists, some Thais just can’t hide their true beliefs, can they? Foot in mouth is hard to eradicate. Given the volatile nature of some Thais, it’s a possibilty that some farang may end up dead as a result of these types of stupid comments.

  16. Avatar

    Ian v5.00121

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 8:04 am

    @Macman – you should check out some of the islands, farang without masks everywhere. very much an issue here

  17. Avatar

    funny coz its true

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 8:05 am

    @Paul gibson – get off your soap box dude.

  18. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 8:11 am

    Nobody wears them in Isaan villages.

  19. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 8:51 am

    True some Thais are not wearing their masks, but just go in Rawai and you will see most of foreigners don’t wear their mask. When I ask them why? They just say, in Rawai there is no Covid. On what world are they living?!

  20. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 9:17 am

    @Michael – Thai’s and foreigners are both to blame for the latest wave of the virus. Plenty of partying all around in Bangkok and Phuket by both groups.

    A large percentage of Americans and Brits have a reputation around the world of being anti-maskers. It’s not hard to find videos on line that support this thesis.

    We’re in Thailand so it’s easy to pick on the foreigners. Just like it’s easy in America to pick on Asian Americans. Both are wrong.

    Unfortunately there are a few bad apples among the foreign population and that makes it easy to generalize to the entire group. Remember we’re in a foreign country and if we don’t follow the laws we’re going to suffer the consequences in spades. You can whine life isn’t fair and you’d be right.

  21. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 9:21 am

    @Nu – you mean they should follow rules like it is common in Thailand and like follow the traffic rules? Stupidity is endless, as we can see at your comment!

  22. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 9:47 am

    Thanks Tim well said

    To compare something I came here 18 years ago they started to force people wear a Helmet on the motorbike.. do they do it? Naahhh funny thing is they wear a mask on the motorbike (me not, because there is no one around and I wear my helmet) so they wear a mask on the motorbike but no helmet my guess us they rather die in an accident and smash their head open this one was for you NU.. with your nonsense I just told you the facts or your fellow citizens including you probably

  23. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 9:50 am

    Oh I forgot NU I recommend to apply for health minister they want him out and they need anyway a new clown you fit perfectly there lol

  24. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 10:03 am

    @Nu – Let me push the button to switch on the brain: ” People who always blame others and foreigners think they are a superior race!” Hope the button if selfreflection can be pushed, too!

  25. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 10:28 am

    It’d be nice if all the foreigners didn’t show their worst side like Paul Gibson has here. Show that we can spell, punctuate and capitalise for a start. Wear the mask, idiot.

  26. Avatar

    Lord Fu Fuu

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 10:29 am

    NAKHON NAYOK: Two women and a man infected with Covid-19 were arrested by police after fleeing a hospital in Sa Kaeo where they were being treated.

    Commander of Sa Kaeo police, Pol Maj Gen Natthapong Sattayanurak, said Kamonwan Lummanee, 46, Kamonchanok Wichachim, 26, and Pannuwat Khantakhot, 23, were arrested in Muang district yesterday.>>>>>>>MiTerrr>>> Self-explanation of the issues here..K Double standards…

  27. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 10:41 am

    Look how many criticise Thailand but won’t leave or stop coming back. Wonder why? ?

  28. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 10:43 am

    I stay in Pattaya and many farangs are not wearing masks and when they walk past me or sit on the same Songtheaw they look at me wearing a mask and get a defiant look on their face like “go ahead say, something about me not wearing a mask”. It has been this way for more than a year. Truth.

  29. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 11:02 am

    My problem with wearing a mask is that the colour clashes with my favourite green shirt.
    Heard the saying blue and green should not be seen?
    I am not one of the dirty ferangs dressed in vest, camo shorts, and flip flops, such as is common among expats in Isaan. No, a straw hat, cotton safari suit and espadrills is my usual attire, with a cane to clip the beggars and Tuc Tuc drivers that will not stop pestering me.
    Therefore my question is this. Would I be forgiven for not wearing a mask because the colour clashes with my shirt?

  30. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 1:01 pm


    The is no need to express your opinion like that.

    The Thai authorities know well how to lay money making paths. Making money from Farangs is one of the easiest ways available.

  31. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 1:12 pm


    Are you sure about Thais spreading COVID-19? Might it be the Mainland Chinese tourists?

    By the way, the way you referred to Thais in your message gave an impression that you are not a trader, at least, not with SET and you used an American language, not English.

    However, please keep posting though, it is always good to learn from different people.

  32. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 1:23 pm

    about 6 weeks ago we visited a famous club in phuket. what we didn’t know that there was a thai rap star performing that night. the place was full with about 3000 thai people and no one – not a single one – was wearing a mask. we went to the small club in the back and finally removed our mask too because we felt stupid being the only ones wearing them, protecting others

  33. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 2:21 pm

    all the people who wear masks are safe because they are saying it stopped the virus from getting to them, so those who don’t wear a mask as we don’t believe in it are safe, as the mask crusaders will not pass it on to anyone

  34. Avatar

    Paul gibson

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 3:31 pm

    Ok nob head dude dude maybe u dont like the truth or are u 1 of them sad old man from pattaya

  35. Avatar

    Paul gibson

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 3:35 pm

    @Slugger – maybe u dont like the truth numpty there again a sad old man like u nob head

  36. Avatar

    Simon Small

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 3:43 pm

    “It’d be nice if all the foreigners didn’t show their worst side like Paul Gibson has here”

    Sadly but unsurprisingly farangs commenting here seem to fall into one of two very different camps.

    On the one hand those who meet at least one of:

    Live or holiday in Phuket.

    Don’t read, write or speak Thai.

    Aren’t married to a Thai.

    Think Thais should know their place and be grateful to farangs for building up their country.

    … and those who meet at least one of:

    Don’t live or holiday in Phuket and don’t want to.

    Can at least speak reasonable Thai.

    Are married to a Thai.

    Treat Thais, and anyone else, as equals.

    Some, very obviously, meet all of either.

  37. Avatar

    Simon Small

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 3:50 pm

    “double standards”

    Where’s the “double standards”, @Lord Fu Fuu?

    The Thais were not only arrested but it was widely reported and they even had their names published.

  38. Avatar

    Lord Fu Fuu

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 5:05 pm

    @Simon Small – Ohh yes Simon, it’s not double standards, its many standards, the standard level, it’s according to the pocket, deep pocket, shallow pocket…I live in Thailand for the past 25 years, along this time, I have a chance to experiences many situations…. which give me a little vision….but obviously, it a kind of discrimination… same as used in western countries, attacking Asian people, making people think that Asian are the sourcing of the problem…which is not either….we people are the sourcing of the problem, no matter from where we came from…signed a dirty farang that I take showers every day, and follow all the rules, here and there…..its what we all we should do.

  39. Avatar


    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 5:43 pm

    #joseph yeah pattaya is another kind of class of fallang I think their home country is happy they living here…

    BTW I was married 13 years until she decided to take a younger guy 26 years from Sweden and I am 57 now 4 years divorced… I do not live in a holiday town or island just live the Nirmal life among the Thai people

  40. Avatar

    Paul gibson

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 9:35 pm

    @Simon Small – @Simon Small – yes nob head another numpty get a life u sad bastard

  41. Avatar

    bob ford

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 10:54 pm

    Foreign Karens have seized a military base in Myanmar in the past 48 hours, they have other things to do at the moment than complain about mask wearing…

  42. Avatar


    Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 7:15 am

    @Macman – I’ve not seen anyone outright not wearing a mask in my many walks around Bangkok in the past few weeks, but I have noticed that there are a ton of foreigners that leave their nose out of their mask. Which essentially makes the mask worthless. There should be a lesser fine for not wearing the mask properly.

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Tim Newton has lived in Thailand since 2012. An Australian, he has worked in the media, principally radio and TV, for 41 years. He has won the Deutsche Welle Award for best radio talk program, presented over 10,000 radio news bulletins, 3,900 in Thailand alone, hosted 650 daily TV news programs and produced 2,100 videos, TV commercials and documentaries. As founder of The Thaiger, Tim now acts as the Content Manager and head-writer, whilst supervising the growth of the YouTube channel. He's reported for CNN, Deutsche Welle TV, CBC, Australia's ABC TV and Australian radio during the 2018 Cave Rescue and other major stories in Thailand.

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