10 Tips to Spot a Katoey (Ladyboy)
Is that girl you are chatting with not a bit 'too good to be true'? Tall, slim, pretty to die for, big assets and really sexy... Ah Ah, you fell for it! she's a katoey! So here are 10 tips for you not be fooled next time.
So what is a katoey anyway? A katoey, or ladyboy, is a transvestite that is actually considered by others as a 'woman'. They often look very feminine and get a lot of attention, just look at some of the places where they perform their little act of 'look at me I'm more feminine than you wife'. Crowds of tourists gather, take photos and everyone is asking each other the same question: what about this one? Do you really think that's actually a guy? So, at their best, which means in the evening, fully make up and using the stage lights at their advantage, katoeys range from 'feminine looking guy' to 'put miss universe to shame'.... seriously.
Even for people living in Phuket for long time, it is still fun to look at them and wonder: do you think one of them would fool me? Of course I mean nothing more than 'I wouldn't be able to tell she is not a girl.' In 99% of the cases, I am confident that I would spot any katoey.
10 Tips to Spot a Ladyboy:
Ladyboys making a living of their features are very exuberant and flamboyant, speaking high and loud, permanently overacting, and well known for their burst of moods. They very often speak a good English. Since they revenue depends on how pretty they are, they will financially invest a lot more on their features, breast augmentation being the most obvious one, and some will seriously increase to seriously big sizes. Then plastic and facial cosmetic surgery will be next on the list and many of them tend to have a very similar nose shape. Even the Adam's apple, often giving them away, can be corrected. And of course few will go through the ultimate surgical procedure and become a woman.
Where to see Katoeys (Katoys):
Soi Crocodile, the best known place is is the middle of Bangla Road in Patong... just walk down the street and you can't miss them, the crowd around is pointing all cameras in this direction.
Cocktails and Dreams, in Soi Happy (aka Soi Vegas) in Bangla Road, almost opposite of Seduction Discotheque, is a small bar with a tiny stage often performing simple shows, you just have to have to order a drink. Some girls are very feminine and they are more than happy to pose for a photo, but get ready for the 'you take photo - you buy me drink'. They also can become 'too friendly' but it's still fun.
Simon Cabaret is a nice professional show, as you can see on some of the photos, but of course there is a fee. Unfortunately, taking photos is not allowed anymore during the show, but you'll have plenty of opportunities outside after the show. Note that a tip will be demanded.
Paradise Complex, the gay area of Patong, has several small cabarets with humble but decent shows that won't cost you more than a beer. 'My Way' used to be the best one.
Useful Tips (you are in luck with tips today):
In Soi Bangla and Simon Cabaret , ladyboys will encourage you to take their photo, with you or without you on it. Just know that it is not free. It usually costs a hundred Baht, and if you chose to run, remember: they are still guys :D