Granted, these are often at the more traditional Korean restaurants. In case you’re not up on your phobia lingo, tetraphobia means to avoid the number four. Truth: I can’t speak for all Asian countries; I have heard Koreans are among the tallest of Asians. (At least, that’s what I tell myself so that I feel less guilty.) Truth: In my experience, yes! Approximately 90% of that land is mountainous, meaning that the Koreans have had to use space ingeniously to make room for everybody. I’m fine, thank you.” I have had an old woman stop me on the sidewalk and, in what was clearly about the only English words she knew, “Hello, I lubba you”, which I can only guess was supposed to be “I love you”. South Koreans work hard, are paid well and enjoy a stable currency and a high standard of living. People can carry alcoholic containers in public and can take a drink or two. It is estimated that some 700 live in South Korea; around 100-200 are found in the Seoraksan Mountain region, while others can be spotted around Woraksan, Odaesan, Woraksan and Taebaeksan Mountains. South Korea’s Internet is Blazing Fast, 20. If you’re on a date in South Korea, it’s one of many questions you’ll want to ask your potential partner. The official name for the country is the Republic of Korea. If you’re a fan of ordering food to be delivered, you’ll fall in love with the way South Korea handles food delivery. 10 Things to Know About the Country of South Korea . One of the most interesting South Korea history facts tells that the country was founded in the year 1945. As they say, to be forewarned is to be forearmed, uh? This often contributes to some of the more unpleasant smells you’ll encounter in Korea. In the West, we often hear news about their neighbors up North. As I am American, I can most certainly tell you that after living in South Korea for two years, most of these issues are isolated to the country. Koreans also believe that the fast-moving air caused by the fan makes it difficult to breathe, causing people to choke. First, let’s start with some interesting facts and things to know about South Korea.. 4. The good news is, you don’t have to wait for that! 10 Facts About Life Expectancy in South Korea. Though small, South Korea is a very diverse and interesting country. If you really want to dig into Korean culture you need to learn the language. It’s not comfortable – trust me! Culture Trip. However, in many countries, Samsung is only known for its cutting edge cell phone technology, when in reality they’re also responsible for creating modern and reliable armored cars for military use and medical equipment among other technologies. Monthly Living Expenses. Whether you’re ordering from a Korean barbecue restaurant or a fast-food restaurant, you will probably have your food delivered to you via an employee on a motorcycle. Not all South Koreans believe this, but for the ones that do, it’s best to not try to sway them. The population is remarkably homogenous, in terms of ethnicity - 99% of the people are ethnically Korean. Besides the popular reasons for the country’s fame, there are a lot of unique facts about South Korea that you don’t hear about until you are actually experiencing everyday life here. In addition, Japanese is common in South Korea. Related. Plastic surgery is also much more affordable in South Korea than it is in other countries, which makes it much more accessible. Kimchi is a fermented dish that can utilize a variety of vegetables and seasonings depending on preference. Korea Britannica Corp. The Korean word for “DMZ” is 비무장지대 (bimujangjidae). Wherever you are in the world, you’ve probably experienced the frustration of slow internet at some point — whether it’s from being in a remote location or having periodic issues with your internet service provider, internet connectivity problems can be a serious inconvenience and put anybody in a bad mood. Before I say anything more, I want to say that this IS NOT a bad thing. On paper, South Korea may seem like an expensive country to live in. Many Koreans will ask ANYTHING. While you may need to clear out some space in your house to stockpile all the extra household supplies, the great thing about this tradition is that it makes picking out housewarming presents a piece of cake. Below, we’ve compiled a list of the most interesting facts about South Korea. Best Of The ROK. Kimchi is also wonderful for the digestive health, so Koreans are way ahead of the game for making it a part of every meal. In Korea, as in many Asian societies, citizens tend to enter a job and stay with that one company until retirement. Top 10 Facts about Living Conditions in South Korea. If you’re planning to do any road trips around that time, make sure to factor in a few extra hours of road time! As the name suggests, Haesingdang Park is home to a wide range of sculptured penises which is, apparently, the largest collection of animated giant penises globally! Sounds like a plan! “Gagnam Style” was so popular that it was the first song to hit one billion views on YouTube, which is an amazing feat when pretty much any song in the universe can be found on the site! South Korea utilizes a different system that has its own unique set of perks — rather than sending heat through vents, most South Korean homes are heated through the floor! Otherwise, you need to refer to them by title. Korean Language. If you are single and they are married, they want to find another connection. South Korea has definitely been getting an increasing amount of publicity around the world. Not worrying about petty crime, armed robberies or questioning everyone’s intentions has been a breath of fresh air in my life. 0. We definitely don’t have signs for plastic surgery everywhere, nor is it common. The country has a total area of 38,690 square miles. Before moving to Korea, she spent 4 years teaching in the United States. On the long working hours: “Koreans also have the third highest working hours in the OECD after Mexico and Costa Rica, and it’s not particularly close to countries of the West,” Christian Bergland said. Living in Korea offers expats an exciting live in a very advanced and modern country. Feel free to leave a comment about your experiences; we’d love to hear from you! 16 Jun, 2011 facts. Many of my lower level students cheerfully shout “Hello teacher! It’s heaven for tech junkies. It’s said that when South Koreans try something, they go hard at it. Just when you thought that discovering your long-lost twin brother while battling through amnesia wasn’t enough, you get some bonus conflict! Surely you remember “Gagnam Style,” the song by the musician Psy that made much of the Western world familiar with K-Pop due to its catchy lyrics and its viral exposure on YouTube. Before I go into the dark side, let's look at a few outstanding goodies you get to have as a wide-eyed foreigner in exile from your own homeland. Central Intelligence Agency. However, South Korea boasts competitive salaries. ?” (Every time they saw me with a man), “Teacher, do you wear a bikini to the beach?” (Umm…. If you’ve visited South Korea before, you’ve probably noticed that it’s hard to find a place that doesn’t accept credit cards. Explaining Seollal, Korean Lunar New Year. One of the interesting facts about South Korea is that people often give toilet paper and laundry detergent as housewarming gifts. They're not being nosy or insulting; they're saving your life! Soju is usually around 19% alcohol content and is commonly drunk with main meals in South Korea. New Year’s Eve, on the other hand, is typically a party environment spent with friends at a pub, club, or house party. Before beginning your life in Korea, it’s great to be prepared for what’s to come – and not just with the school or workplace that you’re going for. Due to this difference in heating systems, you’ll often find Koreans hanging out on the warm floor during the cooler months of the year. One of the unique facts about South Koreans is that when they are born, they’re automatically one year old. General Facts about South Korea. South Korea actually has a strong drinking culture compared to its neighboring countries in Asia. Answers to life's questions / facts / Interesting Facts about South Korea; Interesting Facts about South Korea. 22 June 2017. Fortunately, in an extremely populated city like Seoul, this makes for safer streets and much fewer traffic incidents. “Before the 1990s, usually younger people supported their parents during their retirement so it was not that serious of a problem,” Ku added in his interview with the NPR. Pass? Having that many people live in one place means that there is a seemingly infinite number of restaurants and shops for you to check out during your trip. Although the song is as popular as it is, many people don’t know that the song is about the Gangnam District, an affluent district in Seoul, South Korea. Many of the older Korean’s experiences with foreigners are centered around the Korean War–not necessarily happy memories or positive associations. The National Institute of Biomedical Information conducted a study that researched the cause of life expectancy in South Korea increasing over the past few decades. You will often find a pile on a corner that is for trash collection, so many people will stuff their trash there as well. With 25 million people living within the city limits, it’s not just a large city — it’s actually the third-largest city in the world! On average, South Korea has the fastest internet connection speed, and they’re beating every other country’s internet speeds by a significant amount. I no longer live in Korea – I left one year ago! Even if you are able to scientifically or logically prove your point, you’re still likely to be doubted by superstitious people in South Korea. Interesting facts about South Korea. Many will refuse to take your seat, but the offer is what they are looking for. "10 Animals native to South Korea and where to see them. One of the interesting facts about South Korea is that 4 is an unlucky number. Good question, Tamanna! What Are The Basic Requirements to Teach English in Japan? Below you see animal statues at Heading Yonggungsa temple in Busan. South Korea has ranked last for arms trade > arms exports, top countries since 2003. Personal space is almost non-existent, especially on public transportation. South Koreans are very respectful of traffic and pedestrian laws, so they’ll wait for visual indication that they’re allowed to cross the street every time, even if the street is clear! Around this time, a large percentage of Koreans travel to their hometowns to visit family. Those living in poverty in South Korea increasingly rely on loans to survive. This system means that your feet will always be warm on cold winter mornings — what’s not to love about that? I told you, the smells… you can never be 100% prepared for what you will get. Learning about a new country can be exciting, especially if you’re learning some fun and interesting facts along the way! Many people take their time off travel during these times. If your mouth is watering at the thought of some squirming octopus, you can order some 산낙지 (sannakji | live octopus) when you visit the country. For many people around the globe, Christmas is a time to return back to your hometown and spend time with family. 1. For those a bit more picky like myself…. How-To & Guides . 9. The Lack of English. While being sleep deprived is a reality all across the world in some industries, it’s usually restricted to a select few industries and isn’t a huge part of a given culture. The average cost of living in South Korea is reasonable. If you’re looking for the word for “title”, check out 호칭 (hoching | title). Meanwhile, those already living on South Korea’s one-year permits are … Everywhere else, expats can expect to earn a decent wage and save a good bit of it without having to pinch pennies or live on a … The national household debt recently topped US $971.6 billion, or 81% of the South Korean GDP. So the next time you’re in South Korea in the fall, look out for shelves stocked with deluxe canned meat gift sets. While New Year’s is celebrated in South Korea, it’s not a huge celebration. It is almost impossible to walk down any street without seeing at least one restaurant – or market – with live octopus or any number of sea creatures waiting to be eaten. . Goryeo means “high and clear.” Some poetic interpretations of the name Korea are “Land of High Mountains and Sparkling Streams” and “Land of the Morning Calm.” Not long ago, South Korea was a small, developing nation closed off to much of the world. Photo credit: South Korea is renowned as one of the world’s leading producers of technical goods such as mobile phones, televisions and computers. If you visit South Korea, make sure to make time to explore the natural beauty with a trip down to the beach or up into the mountains. With soaring house pricing in Seoul, it’s a possibility that the area would be demolished to build more apartment complexes. Cost of Living > Compare Countries > South Korea vs India. The country has a population of ~51.5 million. I grew up in New England and was still shocked by the amount of seafood here. There are weird facts about North Korea that will just blow your mind. Your email address will not be published. 10 Things They Don't Tell You About Living in South Korea. It is also a place of both natural beauty and modernity and the major cities in South Korea are progressive whilst also embracing their past; it is possible to observe modern glass … While there’s no arguing that Seoul is an amazing city full of culture, shopping, and food which makes it a huge tourist destination, South Korea is also full of great day hikes. While most of the natural wildlife and rare plants have been killed off in the South, the DMZ hasn’t been touched in over 60 years. If you can’t read 한글 (hangeul | Korean alphabet) yet, you can learn it for free in about one hour by downloading a free guide here. Therefore in South Korea, the baby is 1 year old when born. Add data for South Korea. This means the country has one of the highest life expectancies in the world, … There is an urban legend in South Korea that electric fans that are left on while you are sleeping in a room with the windows and door closed can cause death. One of the common facts is that South Koreans think that there is some significance to their blood type. You’ll have so much to do and experience during your trip that you may find yourself leaning towards getting six hours a night as well — after all, there are only so many hours in a day! The most important passages in a person’s life are the completion of a baby’s first 100 days, one’s marriage, and one’s 61st birthday. Seriously, it’s an overall good place to live for someone like me who is married but doesn’t have children. The more facts you learn, the more you’ll want to know! How Do I Get a Visa for Teaching English in Japan? Despite their obsession with American/English speaking culture. 3) Safety: One of the many pros of living in South Korea. Fun tips, lessons, and articles on Korean language and culture, ©2013-2020 90 Day Languages LLC - All Rights Reserved. Only in specific situations are you allowed to call someone by their first name. How Do I Obtain a Work Visa to Teach English in Korea? More often than not, this is met with excited smiles and a rambling of cities they know… usually New York City or LA. The cost of living in South Korea is quite reasonable, in general, though capital city Seoul is quite expensive. It was constructed in the 1950s when electricity was a luxury in rural areas on both sides of the border. South Koreans, on average, have a life expectancy range that goes into the mid-80s for men and into the 90s for women. Maybe this list will help someone come to Korea at least a little more prepared than I was… and, while you can never quite prepare your nostrils for what you are about to experience, maybe you won’t be quite so shocked by some of the sights and questions. I knew seafood was a common staple in Korea. This policy has since greatly contributed to substandard living conditions for the nation’s people. Traditional family life is much involved with rituals marking life-cycle milestones and the observation of holidays and ancestral rites. Their neighbors in Japan are also similar in that way. Overall, Korea has been a crazy rollercoaster of adventures and learning experiences. The subways can also get quite packed, so be prepared. Last accessed 27 May 2020; Russell Holloway. Everybody wants to put their best face forward, and makeup plays a big part in that. It’s not that critical that they see their families on this day. Both Men and Women Are Obsessed with Makeup. Getting the titles right is critical, and can be a point of strife if family members don’t recognize rank. The method for calculating this is a little tricky since it can vary with the lunar calendar, solar calendar, and your birthday. Koreans seem to love American/English brand items, movies, singers/bands, sports…. The Korean word for blood type is 혈액형 (hyeoraekyeong | blood type). The Korean word for “fan death” is 선풍기사망설 (seonpunggisamangseol), a good word to know if you want to ask about this South Korean phenomenon! The word for “Spam” is 스팸 (seupaem), look for it the next time you visit a local South Korean grocery store! Koreans would barter with American troops for the canned delight and come up with a recipe called bujae jiggae (army stew). 27. 10 English-Speaking Dermatologists In South Korea. He added that their lack of time off makes “the notoriously vacation-stingy Americans look like they’re living lives of leisure.” In 2019, Seoul ranked 4th out of 209 cities in the Mercer Cost of Living Survey. The world is becoming increasingly interested in North Korea and its way of life. Whether you’re a city lover or a fan of adventuring around the outdoors, South Korea truly has something for everybody! At the workplace, this can be somewhat confusing, especially if you’re managing someone who is older than you. Last accessed 27 May 2020. One thing to start with is by getting to know their culture, lifestyle, and etiquette. Reply. How about walking in the middle of the street? The good news is, you don’t have to wait for that! If you are an adventurous eater, this won’t likely be a problem for you. 10. Do you know any interesting facts about South Korea? See our, Teaching English to Young Learners Specialty Class, Teaching Business English Specialty Class, 4-Week Intensive Online Course Dates & Tuition, Teach English Online Employer Comparison Chart, Non-Native English Speakers Teaching Abroad, Buy TEFL Course & Specialty Class Textbooks. I have noticed that, as a younger woman – and clearly a foreigner – in South Korea, I am especially subject to many questions about my marital status. ), “Teacher, did your boyfriend have a six pack?” (Definitely pass.). Some will cut up the octopus and put it in a bowl. My hope, however, is that these observations might at least make you aware of some of the things you’ll be getting yourself into if you ever decide to move to South Korea! My middle school boys are obsessed with anything to do with Avengers, and their favorite singers are often Maroon 5, Jason Mraz or Lady Gaga. Writing a person’s name in red ink indicates that the person is about to die or is already dead and gone. One of the most important South Korean tourism facts says that it is home to more than 3000 islands. Cassie is an American teacher currently working in South Korea. Mark your calendars and brush up on your Valentine’s language, that is one day in South Korea where you don’t want to make a mistake with your significant other! Therefore, in elevators, you’ll often see floors 1, 2, 3, and F. Apartments in South Korea that have numbers with multiple 4s (ex. Therefore in addition to some of the facts, we have added some important Korean vocabulary words that relate to that point. I have never felt unsafe walking around my neighborhood or Daegu at night. The simplest way to answer the age question in South Korea is to just tell Koreans the year you were born. South Korea’s public transportation system is, put simply, amazing. Lesson learned: do not challenge a Korean to a drinking contest. Make sure you order delivery at least once while you’re in Korea to experience what all the fuss is about — most restaurants are open late night for delivery, so if you’re looking for a snack after a night out you can call in your order so you don’t even have to leave your apartment. Moving into a new house in South Korea? They often have NO IDEA what it means or represents. Couples at Christmas, Families at New Year, 17. The most common target for plastic surgery is their eyes, their nose, and their chin in an attempt to pursue a “Caucasian look” popularized by celebrities. There are many endangered animal species living in South Korea. President Obama even referred to it during a March 2012 visit … Foreign Nationals . Don’t end up feeling like a fish out of water when you land in Korea! Her interests include traveling, animal welfare, and anything caffeinated. 404) are often avoided, and the property values are lower. 1. Fast. Sure, it is important to know about some cultural norms (don’t ever put your chopsticks upright in your rice). There’s a lot more to kimchi than meets the eye, many questions you’ll want to ask your potential partner, If you’re planning to do any road trips around that time, the way South Korea handles food delivery, ordering from a Korean barbecue restaurant or a fast-food restaurant, Learn the Korean Alphabet & Read the Hangul Characters, Korean Phrases: The Ultimate List for 2020, Korean – Overview and History of the Language, How to Speak Korean – Online Guide for Conversational Fluency, The Most Common Korean Words and Basic Vocabulary, Top 28 Korean Drama Words & Phrases for K-Drama Fans, Korean Slang – 101 Popular Words & Phrases in 2020, My Korean Name: Choose Your Very Own Name in Korean. If you have future plans to travel to South Korea for your studies or business, it is important to know more than just their pop culture trends and how to speak the language. 5. If you’re out at a restaurant in Korea, look for the word 해장국 (haejangguk | hangover soup). Both holidays are well-celebrated by many countries in the world. Despite a reputation for being uber-macho, South Korean men are obsessed with cosmetics. Life in Korea. She loves to travel and meet new people. This is one of many South Korean hangover cures! Its overall score has increased by 1.7 points due to higher scores in the rule-of-law pillar. Although it’s super common in other parts of the world, you will NOT find jaywalking during your visit here. With great power comes great responsibility, however, so if it’s your first time in a country without regulations on where you can drink, try not to pass out on the sidewalk. Some stereotypes I’ve seen in movies and music are incredibly accurate… And many are so far from the truth, it’s almost humorous. A side of kimchi is standard no matter where or when you’re eating a meal. Its capital, Seoul, is one of its largest cities with a population of over 10 million. This is not unusual at all for both children and adults. Living in South Korea: Housing types South Korea is a crowded country, with almost 50 million people living in an area about the size of the US state of Indiana. Breathing through your nose in Korea is like trying a Bertie Botts Every Flavor Bean: you never know if you’re going to get chocolate, or vomit. 1.South Korean men like to make the most of their appearances and, as such, it is believed that almost a quarter of men use makeup as part of their daily routine. How-To & Guides. 10 Things They Don't Tell You About Living in South Korea, Our website uses cookies to understand what content is most relevant to your research on teaching English abroad. Life in Korea. Busan, South Korea English Teaching Q and A with Anne Shelton, How Teaching in Korea Helped Me Come Out (or Led Me To Come Out), 10 Companies That Let You Teach English Online Without a Degree. Privacy Policy | Terms and Conditions. A near-perfect balance of exciting new technology and old-world tranquility, living and teaching English in South Korea is a great opportunity to explore the country’s fascinating history, vibrant, modern culture, and exciting technological advances. Korea is a very safe country to live and travel. In the text below, the top 10 facts about life expectancy in South Korea that will better explain some of the challenges South Koreans have overcome and still face today, are presented.