Hey guys! We're Creatrip. We bring you info on Korea so you can travel like a local.
Here are some bits of wisdom from and about Korean locals.
1. Metro Line 2 trains have less seats?
Line 2 recently started the operation of new metro trains on Line 2. These trains have less seats than the original, older trains.
The new trains only has six seats in a row while there were seven before. Each seat has a little more space, though. There is also no overhead bag rack.
It doesn't make that much of a difference, and the changes seem to have been made so that there's more standing space. People are commenting that Line 2 is just getting more crowded by the year.
2. Koreans don't know Taiwonese number gestures？
Taiwan has gestures for the numbers 1 -9 rather than holding up fingers.
1 to 5, Koreans understand, but that ends at 6. If you hold up six with your fingers, Koreans are likely to think that you're doing a TWICE dance or something.
If you hold up 7, Korean clerks will understand it as two. So just avoid using your fingers to communicate numbers.
3. Korea has amazing cellular coverage?
Usually cellphones stop working in elevators and basements. In Korea, however, it's very unlikely that your service will cut off unless you're super high up in the mountains or truly in the middle of nowhere. The signal strength rocks here.
4. Korean men wear makeup?
A lot of Korean guys prefer to wear some light makeup like cushion foundations with light coverage or a bit of eyebrow.
A lot of it, however, isn't makeup but semi-permanent procedures (eyebrow tattoos). Eyebrow tattoos are popular among men, women, the young, and the old in Korea.
5. Starbucks is cheap now?
In recent years, everything has gotten more expensive in Korea by at least a couple of bucks.
Inflation is crazy in Korea right now and everything is becoming super expensive. But the only store that hasn't budged is probably Starbucks. Other than the 200 KRW increase in 2014, Starbucks prices has maintained their prices.
6. Korea has no days off during rainy season?
Rainy season is raging in the subtropics, and South Korea is one of the countries affected by it; a period of heavy rains and cloudy days come every summer.
Many countries with consistent rainy seasons/typhoons like Taiwan often have holidays during those periods. However there is no typhoon holidays in South Korea; like the system in Japan, it's up to the companies' discretion.
Apparently this is because Korea has fixed working hours and holidays, so the government is reluctant to set a holiday for rain. So unfortunately, Koreans still have to go to work when it's rain, wind, and thunder are pouring from the skies.
7. Korean college students have a super long winter vacation?
Korean university students have time off in the summer from late June to September, and then a winter vacation from late December to February or March.
Korean college students have a lot of time off, and are only in class 7 months a year.
8. North Korea's literacy rate is 100%?
The countries with the lowest illiteracy rates in Asia are Japan and South Korea. Once Chinese characters stopped being used, the literacy rate has increased year after year. Korea now is a country with one of the highest elderly literate rate in the world.
By the way, North Korea’s illiteracy rate is 0%.
Definition of illiterate determination: people over the age of 15 have no literacy
9. Did Korea steal the Dragon Boat Festival?
The "Dragon Boat Festival" is an important festival in Chinese culture.
However, many people are angry because apparently, Koreans have been arguing that the Dragon Boat Festival is in South Korea.
But this is a false rumor.
There is a Dragon Boat Festival in Gangneung, but this is totally unrelated to the Chinese Dragon Boat Festival. It's 100% Korean, but it does have some similarities to the Chinese festival.
10. Koreans are impatient?
This is a Korean habit. Koreans have a "bballi-bballi (quickly quickly)" culture that was a driving force behind the economic miracle of Han River.
Everybody is always hurrying to work, rushing to work, rushing to get off the bus, rushing to study, rushing to develop relationships, rushing to urge others, rushing to talk... Which is maybe why South Korea's internet speed is so fast.
This was some wisdom about life and culture in Korea. Hope this was interesting.
Until next time!
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