Bars in tourist areas in Thailand are popular, not only because of cheap beer and drinks, but also because there are many girls there. The girls are hired by the bar owner with the sole purpose to attract and comfort customers.
Bar girls have a low base salary, which is supplemented by sales of “lady drinks” and, if they like you enough, a private arrangement in your hotel room.
Bar girls love “lady drinks” “Lady drinks” cost two or three times more than regular drinks, around 200 to 250 bath, and the girl receives 25 to 50 percent of the sales price. So just a few “lady drinks” a day can double a bar girl’s income. If the girl agrees leave the bar with you, then you will have to pay a “bar fine”. This is a compensation for loss of revenue while she is away. A typical “bar fine” in Bangkok is from 500 to 1000 bath. It is also compulsory to by her a “lady drink” first. You can only avoid the “bar fine” if you agree with her to meet after the bar is closed, usually at 01:00.
So here is how it works: You approach a bar and catch the attention from one or more of the girls. She invites you in, takes your order, and after the usual questions about your name and where you come from will she ask you to buy her a “lady’s drink”. Then you have her attention for 30 minutes or so. Of course are you free decline if you want to be alone, or you can invite another girl for a drink.
“Oh, money, money, money, money. Money’s too tight to mention.” Once you have found the tone, she may ask: “Can I go with you?” Again, it’s up to you. Or you can take the initiative and invite her to your hotel. Depending on her look and confidence, she may ask for 1,500 to 2,500 bath for “short time”, which is maximum one hour, and 4,000 or more for the entire night. Confident and attractive girls will ask for more. The price can be negotiated down a few hundred bath, buy don’t try to haggle to much, or she will reject you. If you have special requests, discuss it with the girl before you go to avoid any embarrassments later.
There are three kinds of bars: beer bars, go-go bars and karaoke bars.
1 A beer bar is a place where anybody can socialise, have a drink and watch sports on large TV screens. In quiet areas are there many regular guests. In more touristic areas, like Sukhumvit Soi 4 in Bangkok or the Walking Street in Pattaya, will there be of course be more tourists.
Beer bar girls have a very low base salary. A girl told me that she earns 6,000 bath per month, and that she works six days per week.
2 If you want some entertainment, you should find a go-go bar. Here you can enjoy your drink while watching the “dancers” (most of them don’t dance at all) and special shows performed by real dancers – “Coyotes”. The law of Thailand prohibits people to take off all of their clothes in public, but some of the girls don’t care about that. They have a guard at the door alarming the dancers when the police is getting too close. So the entertainment factor can be pretty high in Thai go-go bars.
Go-go girls earn 500 to 600 bath per day. They are often younger than beer bar girls, they are fit, and they are not shy. The girls have number tags somewhere on their minimal outfit, and all you have to do is to tell one of the staff the number, and she will come over to your table for a lady’s drink. Or you just give her a big smile. Some bars have a bell hanging from the ceiling. You ring the bell if you want to give a drink to all of the girls on the stage.
3 Finally, we have karaoke bars. Karaoke is very popular in East Asia, and both Thais and especially visitors from Japan enjoy singing at stage. And it doesn’t matter at all if the pitch is wrong. The motto is: Everybody can sing. But a Thai karaoke bar is not the place you want visit alone. My advise is: Don’t go to a karaoke bar unless you are in company with locals. Otherwise may you end up with a five-digit bill, or even worse, you will be beaten up by a girl’s boyfriend.
Karaoke bar girls are hostesses and in many cases not sex workers. Upon arrival, select a girl, and she will take you to a karaoke lounge. You will be given a drink menu which normally ends with you buying a bottle of whiskey. Your hostess will make sure your glass is kept full and queue up songs of your choice on the karaoke machine. When you are ready to go, you will be presented a rather large bill for drinks, lady’s drinks, room rental and some expenses you have no idea about what are. The girl(s) will expect a tip as well.