Friday, October 20, 2006

Lot DaiMai

My education continues here in the land of smiles. This week, I found a still cheaper way to ride the sky train which normally costs between 15 and 45 Baht to go most places. But if you purchase a 30 dayx30 trip pass, each trip is only 20 baht no matter how far you go. The catch is that the pass expires after 30 days so any unused trips are not refunded.

The real lesson this week was "Lot DaiMai." "Lot" (rhymes with boat) is the Thai word for "discount." "DaiMai" (Dai and Mai rhyme with Thai) means "Can You" so Lot DaiMai means "Can you discount?" The merchant may respond "Mai Dai" meaning "I can not" but I have yet to hear that phrase. Even in a department store today (similar to Dillards in the US) right before I paid for my merchandise I uttered "Lot DaiMai?" and was rewared with a 20% discount.

On the streets it is even more important to know these simple words. I bought a little bundle of flowers that were priced at 300 Baht. After the magic words I walked away having paid 220 (27% discount).

So now I can eat lunch for less than a dollar a day, and I can buy flowers and other essentials at a discount. If I could only get the ongoing problems with our overpaid driver solved, life would be even better.


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