Let me start off by saying living South Korea has been everything I expected it to be. But also a whole lot of unexpected. It’s scary and exciting all at the same time.
Luckily, my life in korea has treated me pretty well. I have a stable job, I live in a nice area and I have good friends. Korea is amazing for all of the reasons you’ve read about. I’ve had a whole lot of fun here and I don’t regret it in the slightest!
Of course not everyone’s experience will be so positive.
A quick search will give you all you need to know on positives of living here. The food, the nightlife, the ability to save money – they’re all well documented. And I support them fully (Korean fried chicken, anyone???) What they don’t tell you is the frustrations of life here. Sure you’ll find a couple stories about failed dates or hagwon horror stories but that’s only the tip of the iceberg.
Things like making the best friends in the world and forgetting those people will sooner or later leave, sometimes to the opposite side of the world (Sash! also see her blog here, she does adventures. )
Things like language barriers and miscommunication – even when you’ve been studying for a year but it’s still not enough to get by an appointment at a bank or immigration office.
Things like sudden changes like having to move house with 2 days notice or having your schedule changed the day of.
Things like culture differences. Thinking you understand and you’re open minded until you’re in the presence of it every day.
Things like not having enough freedom. Thinking that coming here is a part time job and you’ll get to travel Asia on your weekends (newsflash: it’s not. We’re real teachers and we have to work on weekends sometimes.)
If you plan on coming here, go for it. Personally I’ve gained a whole ton of life experience I just would not have gained whilst living in the U.K. I learned how to REALLY be independant. I learned that life is what you make of it. I learned not to be afraid anymore.
Just something to think about.
Safe travels xo