HF Crewon May 24, 2015 at 11:00 pm

What’s it like living in Korea as a foreigner? Whether you’re familiar with the whole conservative, traditional Asian culture or not, there still exists some differences and cultural traits that are unique to Korea. Hf asked several non-Koreans who either visited or lived in Korea on culture shocks that they had. See if you can relate if you’ve ever been to the land of K-Pop and Kimchi!


Honorifics / Age Culture

–       Not calling Korean people, especially seniors, by their name.
–       不能直呼韓國人的名字,特別是比你年長的人。

–       For a group project, elder students always become leaders and they have larger authority to make decisions in the group
–       做小組功課時,年紀較大的學生通常會做組長,而且他們有更大的權力去作決定

–       … and a professor even required us to clap hands when he came in
–       ……教授甚至會要求學生在自己進班房時拍手。

–       People in general were really conservative but extremely polite
–       韓國人通常都很保守,但卻非常有禮貌。

Photo via blog.hansol.com

Homogeneous culture

–       Europeans are quite individualistic and kind of ignore everyone around them, but in Korea large crowds of people feel much more harmonious, except on the subway, I was really surprised when I got elbowed the first time by an old lady who wanted to get out but could not push me away
–       歐洲人多半是個人主義所以不會太重視在身邊的人,而在韓國即使一大群人在一起都會感覺到和諧,除了在地下鐵,令我很驚訝的是曾經有一次我被一個想通過我的婆婆手肘攻擊。

–       The fashion was really weird to me, to see everyone wearing virtually the same clothes, same hair, etc.
–       韓國的時裝於我而言真的很怪異,特別是當你看到每個人都穿著基本上一樣的衣服和有一樣的髮型。

Photo via koreabang.com
Photo via koreabang.com

Horrific elbow pushes

–       Being pushed by other people onto a full subway car.
–       被人推進一個已經滿了的地鐵車廂。

–       The way people crammed into every possible space on the bus, lol.
–       人們以不同方法嘗試擠進一架沒有太多空間的巴士, lol。

Photo via erickimphotography.com
Photo via erickimphotography.com

Eating bugs

–       Silk Worms (Bundaegi). Well I didn’t find them awfully disgusting but I wouldn’t eat them again. For your information, the smell is worse than the taste.
–       蠶蟲。我沒有覺得它們很噁心,但我不會再吃它們。讓你參考,它們的氣味比味道差。

Photo via businessinsider.com

Public bathrooms / Sauna (Jimjilbang)

–       Male Koreans expecting me to go into the sauna with them, all NAKED. Yikes!
–       韓國的男人認為我會和他們一起去桑拿,請注意是全裸的!

Photo via google.com
Photo via google.com

Couply culture

–       Everyone was in couples, all the time. It seemed to me as though there were no groups of friends or single teens or young adults.
–       任何時候你都見到韓國人是一對對的走在街上,在我來看,好像沒有一群朋友或單獨一個的年輕人和成年人。

–       Men holding girl’s bags all the time. It was ten times more obvious in Korea than other Asian countries.
–       男性經常替女生拿手袋,在韓國看到這個現像的機率應該比其他亞洲國家高十倍。

Photo via liveinkorea.blogspot.com
Photos via liveinkorea.blogspot.com


–       The “Drink till you drop” is so common there. People really just don’t know their limits.
–       「不醉無歸」的文化在這裡是很普遍的,他們都好像不知道自己的極限。

South Korean drink soju
Photo via The Guardian
Photo via Misaeng

–       The drunk businessmen on the streets. Some hilarious photos on Black Out Korea.
–       在街上醉昏昏的商人。這個Black Out Korea網站有很多人有趣的宿醉相片。

07-korea-through-the-eyes-of-foreigners 08-korea-through-the-eyes-of-foreigners
Photos via blackoutkorea.com

 Ajummas and ajusshis

–       All the ajummas have the same perm hairstyle, hilarious!
–       所有「阿珠媽」(太太)都有著相同的髮型,非常滑稽!

Photo via kimcheekey.wordpress.com
Photo via flickspin.com

–       Ajummas come into the public bathroom to mop around the urinal while I’m using it!
–       當我在小便時,「阿珠媽」會隨時進入公眾浴室進行清潔。

Photos via blog.ohmynews.com
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