This guide is aimed at people who want to send and receive email written in the Thai language. Most people reading this guide will be living outside of Thailand and are having difficulties actually viewing the text in Thai, they have probably arrived here frustrated after searching the internet for help. Other people will be Thai people who are sending email to friends and family abroad and Thai people living abroad sending messages to various places.

I have been studying this problem for some time so the first good news is you are not alone! The bad news is, there is no good solution to this problem, yet. Fortunately the second good news is we can fix your problems, however, it will be more laborious than you would ideally want. This is why I say "there is no good solution", a good solution would be simple and easy.

One of the reasons that this problem has endured for so long is that the majority of Thai people are happily sending and receiving email oblivious to the problems of communicating with the outside world. Simply put, the people with the technical and linguistic know-how don't know the problem exists or consider it to be minor. Except for me.

This guide is written for a reader who wants to use Thai in their email, isn't afraid of a few technical words or getting a little up close and personal with their computer set up. The reader is not expected to have a technical background so there should be enough information to help you set things up.

In this guide I have used YAM and Thunderbird as examples of email clients (*) but the information can be applied to any client. I will also be looking at how to send email with webmail like Hotmail and Yahoo.

* An email client is what we call the software you use to send and receive email.

First Steps

OK, you're using Thai so I have to make a few basic assumptions:

OK, now we're ready to start discussing the problems of reading Thai email.