While we’re not suggesting you join the sex-pats that frequent Cambodia, instead we’re looking to the healthy relationships, and marriages, between Cambodian men and women and foreigners – or barangs – that can be found in all corners of the country. And it’s easy to see why, with Khmer traits loveable to all walks of life.
Cambodians are suckers for all things love-related. Fact. Pop songs, music videos, films, heart emojis, giant teddy bears clutching hearts: they all nod towards one universal theme. Yes, you guessed it. Love.
To quote Mother Teresa, “Let us always meet each other with a smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.” You’re never far away from a smile in Cambodia, and your Khmer girlfriend or boyfriend’s smile will be beautifully infectious.
Cambodians are keen to impress and will throw themselves head first into any new challenge. They are also curious and keen to expand their knowledge so expect lots of questions about your culture and customs.
The innate warm and caring nature of Cambodians means they will always be looking out for you and put your needs first. Just make sure you don’t take advantage of this beautiful trait.
Family is the centre of life in Cambodia, which means if things get serious then you will quickly be introduced to the family. And if they like you, then you will be accepted with open arms.
Cambodians are feeders by nature so prepare to be plied with everything from snacks to feasts throughout the day. And expect the kitchen to be the centre of the action, with something constantly cooking.
Cambodians’ inquisitive nature and insatiable desire to learn new things means they are keen to try new things, as well as devour information about your culture and way of life while sharing elements of their own.
In line with their love for romance, Cambodians are cute when it comes to couples. Expect lots of hand holding, couples selfies, soppy messages and Facebook posts, and lavish gifts on Valentine’s Day.
While this should in no way, shape or form be the sole reason for dating a local, we’re pretty sure your partner will happily help you avoid paying the heavy “foreign tax” slapped on everything you buy.
If your AC has stopped working, the plumbing is broken or you’ve lost your key and have no clue what to do, fear not because Cambodians are truly innovative and will quickly find a solution, either themselves or through their vast network of contacts.
The majority of those who return to Cambodia claim it is the people who keep them coming back. Their soft souls, strength, determination and humility is sure to rub off, and these are all quality traits to have.