Samlo! Tuk Tuk! Songthaew! (ICEBREAKER)


10 minutes

This fun icebreaker is based on three types of public transportation in Thailand:

  • Samlo (“three wheels”) is a rickshaw. Pronounced: “sawm-low” (long “o”)
  • Tuk Tuk (the sound the vehicle makes) is a three-wheeled motorcycle taxi.  Pronounced: “took took”
  • Songthaew (“two rows”) is a pickup truck with two rows of covered benches in the back.  Pronounced: “song-tow” (“tow” as in the first part of “towel”)

This icebreaker energizes and adds some silliness to a workshop.  Because the words are unfamiliar and a little challenging to remember, it requires focus and concentration.


·      Print out the pictures of the vehicles in the file called, “Samlo, Tuk Tuk, Songthaew – Photos.pptx”  You can download it on the Lesson and Material Downloads page at


·      None


Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “Let’s do an icebreaker!”
  • “I need everyone to come stand in a circle.”
  • “Now, place your hands together like this (demonstrate) as if you were about to say a prayer.”
  • “This is your ‘Zinger!’”
  • “You use it to point to someone and say a word.”
  • “There are three words that you must say in the right order, and they describe three types of public transportation in Thailand.”
  • “The three types of transportation are ‘Samlo,’ which is a rickshaw; ‘Tuk Tuk,’ which is a three-wheeled motorcycle taxi; and ‘Songthaew,’ which is a pickup truck with two rows of covered benches in the back.”
  • “So, the three transportations again are: ‘Samlo,’ ‘Tuk Tuk,’ and ‘Songthaew.’”
  • “Everyone say them with me….‘Samlo!’….‘Tuk Tuk!’….‘Songthaew!’” (You may want to practice this several times so that they are familiar with the words.)
  • “Excellent!”
  • “Here’s how this icebreaker is done…I’ll start and point to someone with my Zinger.”
  • “I’ll say, ‘Samlo!’”
  • “Then that person has to quickly point to someone and say, ‘Tuk Tuk!’”
  • “Then that third person has to quickly point to someone and say, ‘Songthaew!’”
  • “The fourth person now starts over, quickly points to someone and says, ‘Samlo!’”
  • “It’s okay to point right back at the person who pointed to you if you want to try to catch them by surprise.”
  • “This keeps going until one of two things happens:
    • Someone gets confused and says the wrong word (or a correct word in the wrong order).
    • Someone takes too long to respond.”
    • “If either of these two things happens, that person is out, and whoever used their Zinger on them starts off the new round.”
    • “What questions do you have?”  (Answer questions.  Then, begin a round, or have someone else begin it.  Play continues until you are down to two or three people.  Announce them as the winners!)

1 Comment

Filed under Energizer, Game, Icebreaker

One response to “Samlo! Tuk Tuk! Songthaew! (ICEBREAKER)

  1. Sim

    wonderful and fun icebreaker !!!. Very culturally appropriate for Thialand. One can be inspired and use similar icebreaker but customized it for its own country.Can be clasiffied as great ideas :). Thank you Mike for lettling us experienced this :).

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