As in most Asian countries, the importance of a Thai name lies first and foremost in its meaning. Among the 44 consonants and 37 vowels in the Thai alphabet, parents will therefore form a first name according to what it means, positively or negatively. Thus, we can find first names such as Soupanie (everyone's beloved), Dara (star) or even Souvaisaï (the good thinker).
Similarly, the choice of name is also determined by the day of the week. Whether the baby was born on a Monday, Wednesday or Saturday will have an impact. Indeed, Buddhist monks have already predefined in advance a list of first names according to the days of the week, which parents can decide whether or not to choose. And, depending on the sex of the child, it is preferable for a boy to have letters in his first name that promote strength while the girl's first name should promote glory.
So, if you are still unsure about the first name you will give your child, you will find below an inspiring list of Thai names for a girl or a boy.
Generally, the Thai first name is more commonly used than the family name in Thailand, except in administrative procedures. Thus, even in the case of high-ranking persons such as ministers, the first name is privileged to address an interlocutor. During a conversation, the person will be referred to only by their first name.
In addition, Thai culture has a very specific character when it comes to first names. Indeed, from birth, Thai people are given a nickname, by which they are called on a daily basis by their relatives or colleagues. It is usually chosen by parents and is less formal than surnames and forenames, but is commonly used. The nickname reflects a characteristic of the person, such as Noi (small) or Uan (obese). Some have the same nickname as animals such as Moo (pig) or Nok (bird). And, with the effect of globalization, some nicknames are now influenced by foreign cultures such as Joy, Pinky, Love, Pepsi, Frog or Ford. Usually composed of one syllable, they do not necessarily have any meaning, unlike first names, which obey rules.
In Thailand in particular, it is very easy for the inhabitants to change their first names. When going to a temple, a Thai can ask a monk to choose a new first name for him, and once the parents have validated, the person can change his first name.