South Korea

Capital Seoul

Population 50,801,405

Area 100,210 km2

Key facts

South Korea is a country located in Eastern Asia. South Korea has only one border country: North Korea. The official language of South Korea is Korean. Unfortunately, if you speak English, it might be problematic to communicate fluently unless you know Korean.

In the EF English Competency Index (EF EPI), which assesses the language proficiency of non-native speaking countries, South Korea was ranked 37th out of 100 countries in 2021.

The national currency in South Korea is South Korean won (KRW). The won (₩) is subdivided into 100 jeon.

With today’s currency rate, 1 EUR is worth 1348.84 KRW and 1 USD is worth 1256.41 KRW.

South Korean
Banknotes

₩1000₩5000₩10000₩50000

South Korean
Coins

₩1₩5₩10₩50₩100₩500

Check with your bank before your trip to find out if there are any fees for using your card abroad. Some banks do not charge fees when you use a foreign ATM or pay in foreign currency, but others may charge a fixed cost for each transaction or allow a limited number of free withdrawals. The travel card provided by Wise.com, Revolut or Monose might be an excellent option to cut down on transaction fees.

Ookla® Speedtest The average fixed internet speed in South Korea is 176.31 Mbps and mobile is 246.68 Mbs.The global average is 150.61 Mbps and 97.08 Mbps respectively.

ATM Density South Korea has more ATMs than most other countries.264.62 ATMs per 100,000 people.The global average is 41.24.

SIM Registration In order to purchase a SIM card in South Korea, a passport or ID is required as identification.

Socket types

There are 2 socket types used in South Korea. Type C is a popular socket type throughout Europe (except the United Kingdom), Russia, and certain Asian countries.

Type C 220 V, 60 Hz  Type F 220 V, 60 Hz  

The sockets’ shapes and voltage differ from country to country and a travel plug adapter may be required. Portable devices, such as phones, notebooks or tablets, usually handle the entire range of voltages used across the world (110-240V).

Public holidays

In the year 2023, South Korea will celebrate 15 national public holidays. The next one Independence Movement Day will take place on March 1.

Date Holiday name
January 1, 2023 New Year’s Day새해
January 21, 2023Moving holiday Lunar New Year설날
January 23, 2023Moving holiday Lunar New Year설날
January 24, 2023Moving holiday Lunar New Year설날
March 1, 2023 Independence Movement Day3·1절
May 5, 2023Moving holiday Children’s Day어린이날
May 27, 2023Moving holiday Buddha’s Birthday부처님 오신 날
June 6, 2023 Memorial Day현충일
August 15, 2023 Liberation Day광복절
September 28, 2023Moving holiday Chuseok추석
September 29, 2023Moving holiday Chuseok추석
September 30, 2023Moving holiday Chuseok추석
October 3, 2023 National Foundation Day개천절
October 9, 2023 Hangul Day한글날
December 25, 2023 Christmas Day크리스마스

Tourism

What hotel chains are present in South Korea?

There are Mariott hotels in 2 cities: Daegu and Jeju-do.

The Hilton hotel chain operates in South Korea.

The IHG hotel chain operates in South Korea.

The Best Western hotel chain operates in South Korea.

There are no Radisson hotels in South Korea.

The Accor hotel chain operates in South Korea.

What fast food chains are present in South Korea?

The McDonald’s chain operates in South Korea.

The KFC chain does not operate in South Korea.

The Burger King chain operates in South Korea.

The Subway chain operates in South Korea.

The Domino’s Pizza chain operates in South Korea.

The Starbucks chain operates in South Korea.

Weather

What is the weather like in Seoul?

Today the sun in Seoul, rises at 7:27 AM and sets at 6:05 PM. The climate of Seoul may be categorized as a Humid continental, according to Koppen’s classification system.

TodayFeb 9Partly cloudlyLow: -6.2°C (20.84°F)High: 5.5°C (41.9°F)
FridayFeb 10DrizzleLow: -0.2°C (31.64°F)High: 6.8°C (44.24°F)
SaturdayFeb 11OvercastLow: -5.4°C (22.28°F)High: 6°C (42.8°F)
SundayFeb 12FogLow: -3.9°C (24.98°F)High: 8.3°C (46.94°F)
MondayFeb 13OvercastLow: 0.1°C (32.18°F)High: 10.6°C (51.08°F)
TuesdayFeb 14OvercastLow: -5.6°C (21.92°F)High: 2.5°C (36.5°F)

Weather data for Seoul (capital city) by Open-Meteo.com

Transport

Railways There are passenger trains , and some of them are high-speed trains.

Subway Systems The subway system is available in 6 cities.

Taxi Apps Uber is available in 27 cities. Bolt is not available in South Korea.

Car Rental Avis , Sixt , Hertz are all available in South Korea.

Road Connectivity Index (2016)  No data available.

Driving Side In South Korea traffic is right-handed.

Safety

Theft Occurrence Rate  350.00 thefts per 100,000 people in 2020.The global average is 544.

Road Traffic Casualties 8.60 deaths per 100,000 people in 2019.The global average is 16.71.

Travel Advisory Level (U.S. DoS)  Level 1: Exercise normal precautions. 

Emergency phones in South Korea

112 Police
119 Ambulance
119 Fire police

Sources

Smoking & Alcohol

Smoking ban Smoking is forbidden in all public indoor locations, with limited exceptions.

Cananbis legality Recreational usage: Illegal
Medical usage: Legal in certain circumstances

Minors under 19 years of age (based on year of birth) are not given tax exemption for liquor and cigarettes.

Alcohol allowance

  • 1 bottle of liquor (up to 1L and US$400)

Tobacco allowance

  • 200 cigarettes
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