Dating in Cambodia: Dating Tips and the Best Cambodian Dating Site (2023)
Dating in Cambodia can be a wonderful, but challenging experience. The so-called “Kingdom of Wonder” is home to more than 17 million people, many of which are looking for a new partnership.
Disclaimer: This article in no way aims to perpetuate stereotypes or prejudices towards those from a specific culture. Use this guide for general insights into the Cambodian dating culture, keeping in mind that not all Cambodian people follow the same attitudes or behaviors.
Table of contents [ Show Hide ]
- Best dating apps in Cambodia
- Understanding the Cambodian dating culture
- How to meet Cambodian women and men
- Etiquette when dating in Cambodia
- 5 first date ideas when dating in Cambodia
- How to act when dating in Cambodia: first date to relationship
- Things to keep in mind for Americans dating a Cambodian
- Our final thoughts
- Dating culture guides
Best dating apps in Cambodia
Online dating is becoming more popular in Cambodia to meet Cambodian singles. The top three online dating apps in Cambodia are SweetMeet, Badoo, and Bumble. Sign up to start dating in Cambodia:
One of the largest dating platforms in the world, Badoo is a great option to find both casual and serious relationships. If you’re in Cambodia, you can use Badoo’s unique “people nearby” option to find your Cambodian match and start dating in Cambodia.
Although when dating in Cambodia, men may still take the lead, many Cambodian people appreciate gender equality. Bumble is a great choice for a Cambodian dating app since it encourages women to make the first move.
Tinder might be the most popular dating app on the market, making it a great platform to meet people from all backgrounds. The app’s popularity gives you plenty of opportunities to start dating in Cambodia.
Understanding the Cambodian dating culture
When dating in Cambodia, you should first get to know its people. Most Cambodians are known to be gentle, warm-hearted, and compassionate.
Belief and faith
According to the U.S. Embassy, more than 95% of Cambodians are Buddhists. You will find pagodas and monasteries in even the most remote areas. Devotion is shown through meditation practices, praying at altars, and receiving blessings from monks. Keep the religious differences that might occur in mind when dating a Cambodian.
The household structure of Cambodian families is more matriarchal than in other Asian countries and often, the oldest male in the family is expected to be the main income earner. Women tend to take care of the home, family budget, and children. Cambodian men tend to have a lot of respect for their wives and their authority in the family.
Community over individuality
Most Cambodians tend to have a sense of attachment and pride for their family, village, and district. A strong emphasis is placed on honor and loyalty towards one’s family. The community is considered more important than the individual and most Cambodian women and men are expected to act in the interest of the collective group.
Cambodians have experienced a tragic past during the Khmer Rouge regime, but most of them learned to forgive in order to live in harmony—and are searching for the same in a relationship.
While in Western culture a smile is an expression of happiness, in Cambodia that might not always be the case. It can mean hello, or a simple acknowledgment, but smiles are also used to hide worries, embarrassment, or anger.
How to meet Cambodian women and men
If you want to get to know Cambodian women and men and start dating in Cambodia, there might be a Cambodian dating site that will increase your chance of success. Online dating is becoming more popular in Cambodia, and Asian dating sites will support you in finding the right match.
Best cities for singles
Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Battambang are probably the best options if you are looking to start dating in Cambodia. Here are our suggestions for each city:
- Phnom Penh: In the capital of Cambodia you can experience something new every day. The Malis, Topaz, and Digby’s restaurants are very attractive for singles. For a night out we recommend the Sound Club, Love, and Secrets nightclubs
- Siem Reap: From cultural and historical to sporty locations you can find everything in Siem Reap. Try Malis, Georges Rhumerie, and Charney Tree restaurants, as well as Barcode Bar, Temple Club, and The Angkor What? Bar for a night out
- Battambang: The small but modern city is known for its welcoming population. If you want to meet Cambodian singles, we recommend The Starlight, The Balcony, and Miss Wong as well as the La Casa, White Rose, and Cafe Eden
Etiquette when dating in Cambodia
Most Cambodians are looking for a long-term commitment with marriage as the end goal.
4 etiquette tips for dating a Cambodian man
- Most Cambodian men are fashionable. They tend to care a lot for their looks and take great care of themselves. If you go on a date with a Cambodian man, feel free to dress to impress.
- Cambodian men are gentlemen. Courtesy and chivalry are big in Cambodia, so be prepared to be pampered—it’s normal for a man to take your coat, get the door, and give you little gifts from time to time.
- You will probably become part of the family. A Cambodian man might feel a strong loyalty toward his family and be very close to them. Once you start dating a Cambodian man, you will fast meet his family and become a part of them.
- Be prepared for honest conversations. Most Cambodians value honesty and tend to have good communication skills. But be aware! Saying “no” might be difficult for them as they believe it comes across as disrespectful.
4 etiquette tips for dating a Cambodian woman
- Be a gentleman. Chivalry is very much alive in Cambodia, and many women have certain expectations. Little thoughtful gestures and small gifts are appreciated.
- Most Cambodian women are humble. They tend to show gratitude and you most likely won’t be taken for granted. They are usually not very demanding and probably won’t expect you to spend a lot of money on them.
- They love children and family. Most Cambodian single women are looking for something long-term and are projecting to be a wife and mothers. If you are not looking for that, communicate your intentions from the beginning.
- They want to be protected. Most Cambodian women enjoy the traditional gender dynamic and are looking for a man that can take care of them. If you make her feel safe and protected, she will likely stay by your side.
5 first date ideas when dating in Cambodia
- Enjoy a scenic cocktail evening: Most Cambodians like to dress up and appreciate a little high-class feeling. You could try one of the many sky bars to watch the city from above while sipping on a cocktail. A recommendation is the SORA Skybar in Phnom Phen.
- Go on a romantic meal. This classic first date idea always works—get to know the local cuisine and discover the local night markets or go out for some fine Cambodian dining. You will also find some excellent international restaurants in Cambodia.
- Prepare a picnic. Most Cambodians love to picnic and it can be a very romantic experience. You can choose to go to a park or search for a more exotic location like Tonle Bati 30km south of Phnom Penh.
- Explore the countryside. There are plenty of cute villages and beautiful nature spots in Cambodia. You could hire a bike and explore the ancient capital of Oudong, the famous Angkor Wat temple, or just cruise through the villages.
- Relax at a spa. Many hotels in the big cities offer spa treatments like massages, scrubs, and saunas. Release some stress and get to know each other in a relaxed environment. Many spas, like the Bodia Spa, also offer private rooms.
How to act when dating in Cambodia: first date to relationship
Cambodian men and women are free to choose their partners, but some parents will organize dates for them in order to find a suitable match. Social class is considered very important when choosing a date. In the big cities, dating is also done without the parents being involved, following a more liberal Western approach.
Before jumping into a serious relationship, Cambodians prefer to take it slow and enjoy the dating process. Because loyalty is so important, you might want to let them know that you are not interested in anyone else romantically. It is also important to respect boundaries, as most Cambodians take their time getting intimate or showing affection in public.
Once in a relationship, most Cambodians appreciate affection and enjoy romance. Be prepared for lots of hand-holding, couples selfies, little gifts, and cute messages. The family of your partner will most likely be involved from the beginning of the relationship and play a huge role in their life.
In rural areas, the courting period can be very short and many couples get married a few months after meeting each other. In the cities, couples can date for years before deciding to get married. Due to conservative beliefs, cheating and divorce are rarely an option. Children are expected and wished for once you marry a Cambodian woman or man.
Things to keep in mind for Americans dating a Cambodian
- Cambodians might ask your age long before they will ask your name. This is to determine how they should greet and address you adequately.
- In the beginning, Cambodians might avoid eye contact as a show of respect.
- Touching and hugging in public is not the norm. Cambodians greet one another with “Sampeah” (place the hands together in a praying posture in front of your chest and then bow).
- As a foreigner, you usually pay tourist prices in Cambodia. But if you decide to date a Cambodian, you will most likely get the advantage of paying local prices.
- If you date a Cambodian, be prepared to date his or her whole family as well. Cambodia is still a conservative society and the parents play a major role in decision-making.
- Intimacy might not happen at the beginning. Cambodians are a bit more conservative and most of them prefer to take their time getting intimate.
Discover the answers to some common questions about dating in Cambodia.
What is dating in Cambodia like?
When dating in Cambodia, you may notice that singles in the cities tend to be more modern while singles from the rural areas are more conservative.
Traditional gender roles are still present and the family is at the center. Most Cambodian men are protective, caring, and honest and most Cambodian women are shy, humble, and loyal. It is important to know the dating culture before starting to date in Cambodia.
Can a foreigner marry a Cambodian woman?
Yes, if you are dating a Cambodian woman and want to marry her, you can register your marriage with the Cambodian embassy in the country where the marriage is held. Cambodian women are generally keen on getting to know foreigners.
How old people should get married in Cambodia?
In Cambodia, the legal age of consent is 15 years. Most Cambodians get married between 18 and 25 years old. Cambodian men tend to marry younger women, whereas Cambodian women tend to marry older men.
Our final thoughts
Cambodian dating culture is rooted in courtesy, humility, and loyalty. Cambodians tend to be very kind, gentle, protective, and honest. The family is very important and will probably be involved in the dating process. In the bigger cities, you are likely to meet more modern Cambodian singles than in rural areas. A Cambodian dating site can make the journey of getting to know Cambodian women or men a lot easier.
If you want to start dating in Cambodia, keep the dating etiquette and culture in mind. But always remember: the Cambodian you date is not a culture, but an individual.
Find the best Cambodian dating site and start flirting today with our top-ranked Asian dating apps!
Dating culture guides
Find out more about what dating people from different cultures is like:
- Asian dating
- Chinese dating
- Japanese dating
- French dating
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