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What You Need to Know Before Coming to Korea

Updated on Jun 10, 2024 · By ENKOR

South Korea, known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and technological advancements, is a fascinating destination for travelers. Whether you're visiting for the first time or returning for another adventure, there are several important things to know to make the most of your trip. From cultural norms to practical tips, here’s what you need to know before coming to Korea.


Understanding Korean Culture and Etiquette

Respect for Elders: In Korea, respect for elders is a fundamental part of the culture. You’ll notice that younger people often bow when greeting older individuals and use honorific language. When addressing someone older, it's polite to use formal titles and show deference.

Dining Etiquette: Korean dining etiquette is unique and can be quite different from what you’re used to. For example:

  • Don’t start eating until the eldest person at the table begins.
  • Use both hands when receiving or passing something.
  • It’s customary to pour drinks for others rather than yourself. Hold your glass with both hands when someone is pouring for you.

Shoes Off Indoors: When entering a Korean home, it is customary to remove your shoes. Many traditional restaurants and accommodations will also require you to take off your shoes before entering certain areas.

Public Behavior: Koreans value modesty and humility. Loud or boisterous behavior in public places can be frowned upon. It’s also considered polite to cover your mouth when laughing and to avoid direct eye contact for prolonged periods, as it can be seen as confrontational.

Practical Tips for Travelers

Language: While younger Koreans and those in the service industry often speak some English, it's helpful to learn a few basic Korean phrases. This can make your interactions smoother and show respect for the local culture. Apps like Papago can also assist with translation.

Transportation: Seoul and other major cities have extensive public transportation networks that are both efficient and affordable. The T-money card is a rechargeable smart card that can be used for buses, subways, taxis, and even purchases at convenience stores.

Currency: The currency in South Korea is the Korean Won (KRW). Credit cards are widely accepted, but it's a good idea to carry some cash, especially when visiting rural areas or small businesses.

Wi-Fi and Connectivity: South Korea boasts some of the fastest internet speeds in the world. Free Wi-Fi is available in many public places, including cafes, subways, and shopping areas. You can also rent a portable Wi-Fi device or purchase a local SIM card for your phone.

Safety: In South Korea, safety is a key aspect of daily life, with the country boasting notably low crime rates. One visible manifestation of this commitment to safety is the widespread presence of closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras. These cameras are not limited to urban areas but are also commonly found along hiking trails and mountain pathways. So, even when exploring nature, don't be surprised to encounter CCTV surveillance, as it's an integral part of ensuring safety and security throughout the country.

Experiencing Korean Cuisine

Korean cuisine is diverse and delicious, offering something for every palate. Traditional dishes such as kimchi, bibimbap, and bulgogi are must-tries. Street food is also a significant part of the culinary experience, with markets like Gwangjang and Namdaemun offering a wide array of tasty treats.

Dietary Restrictions: If you have dietary restrictions, it’s helpful to learn how to communicate them in Korean. Vegetarian and vegan options are available but can be limited.


Enjoy a Comfortable Stay with Enkor Stay

After a day of exploring Seoul in the summer heat, retreat to the comfort of Enkor Stay. Located in the heart of Seoul, Enkor Stay provides the perfect oasis for travelers looking for a cool and relaxing place to stay.

Why Choose Enkor Stay?

  • Prime Location: Conveniently located near major attractions and public transportation.
  • Comfortable Amenities: Enjoy air-conditioned rooms, free Wi-Fi, etc.
  • Exceptional Service: Our friendly staff is dedicated to ensuring your stay is comfortable and enjoyable.
  • Affordable Rates: Experience top-quality accommodation at competitive prices (not deposit required)

Book Your Stay with Enkor Stay

Make your summer visit to Seoul even more enjoyable by staying at Enkor Stay. Visit our website to book your accommodation today and ensure a memorable and comfortable experience in Seoul.

Best price for mid, long-term stay (minimum stay of 14 nights).

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