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An Expat Talks about Living in Seoul, Korea

Nov 13, 2017


Seoul, South Korea

An expat who worked in the military describes his experiences of living and working in South Korea for six years. Includes ideas for learning the language and some descriptions of his positive experiences with the Korean people.

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?


How long have you lived there?

About six years total time

What activities, clubs and organizations would you recommend to newcomers to help them meet others?

First Recommendation: Expats in Korea should take some Korean language classes. After I arrived in Korea, US Army Tour, I made an agreement to teach a young Korean high school student English for one or two hours per week if she would teach me Korean for the amount amount of time.

That was without a doubt the best decision I made while in Korea ... I was a Captain in the Army at the time and shortly after, about 3 or 4 months I was selected to Command a Company with around 80 Republic of Korea Army soldiers assigned ... Perhaps it was because of my Korean language skills ... Not sure but a great job and great for my Military Career.

I just returned from Korea, (June 2017), I attended a Unit reunion after more than 40 years. I loved it and am planning a move to Korea ... Sometimes in early 2018.

PS: During my total of six years in Korea, (2 different tours), I only met two or three people that I did not like.

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In terms of religious, racial, economic and cultural diversity, are the people of this city or town diverse? Are they accepting of differences? Describe.

Not very diverse ... They appeared to accept my differences BUT I am not sure that they were that much different from me.

What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?

No Sure. Lots of people teach English there but ... as I was gainfully employed the whole time I was there I did not pay that much attention to the job market.

In general, what are peoples' priorities in this city? For example, do lives revolve around work, family, socializing, sports, etc.?

Work! Work! Work! The Korean people are exceptionally hard workers ... The best students in the world!

If a friend of yours was thinking of moving to this city or town from far away, what other advice would you give them.

Learn as much of the language as possible and above all ... Treat everyone with respect.

RESPECT. RESPECT. RESPECT. Remember you are a Diplomate from your country ... make it proud of you!

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