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General Information About Republic of Korea

Visa & Passport

All visitors to enter the Republic of Korea must have a valid passport and visa. Visitors with roundtrip tickets from countries who have a special agreement with Korea may be exempt from the visa requirement, and can stay in Korea visa-free for up to 30 days, or 90 days, depending on the type of agreement between two countries. Please contact the Korean embassy or a consulate in your country as early as possible.

For more information: www.mofat.go.kr/ENG/visa/application/index.jsp

Weather

  • Spring
    Spring
    March - May
  • Summer
    Summner
    June - August
  • Autumn
    Autumn
    September - November
  • Winter
    Spring
    December - February

Currency & Banking

The unit of currency is the Korean Won (Indicated as ₩). Coin denominations are ₩10, ₩50, ₩100 and ₩500. Bank notes are ₩1,000, ₩5,000, ₩10,000 and ₩50,000. Foreign bank notes and traveler's checks can be converted into Korean Won at foreign exchange banks and other authorized money exchangers. International credit cards, such as Visa, Master Card, American Express, Diners Club, and JCB are widely accepted at major hotels, department stores and restaurants. US$1 is equivalent to approximately ₩1,152 as of March 2012.

  • 1,000 won
    1,000 won
  • 5,000 won</
    5,000 won
  • 10,000 won
    10,000 won
  • 50,000 won
    50,000 won
  • 10 won
    10 won
  • 50 won
    50 won
  • 100 won
    100 won
  • 500 won
    500 won

Electricity

The standard electricity supply is 220 volts AC/60 cycles. Most hotels may provide outlet converters for 110 and 220 volts. Participants are advised to check with the hotel beforehand.

Time Difference

When Indicating Korea Time: Present Time (GMT+9) / No daylight savings time

Business Hours

Government office hours are usually from 9:00 to 18:00 on weekdays and closed on weekends. Banks are open from 9:00 to 16:00 on weekdays and closed on Saturday and Sunday. Most stores are open every day from 10:30 to 20:00, including Sunday.

Tax & Tipping

Value-added tax is levied on most goods and services at a standard rate of 10% and is included in the retail price. Tipping is not customary in Korea. Sometimes, expensive restaurants and luxury hotels may add a service charge of 10%. Thus, you do not necessarily have to prepare for extra charges since it will be included in the bill.

Emergency Call

1339 : Medical Emergency
119 : Emergencies for Fire / Rescue & Hospital Services
112 : Police
129 : First Aid Patients