The Korean Media
Some of you may be interested in learning more about Korean society and politics. Awesome! The English-language Korean media is also a great place to find out about various events going on in Korea – concerts, music festivals, art exhibitions, travel opportunities etc. Listed below are some of the most popular sites.
Yonhap News Agency – newswire service
Chosun Ilbo one of the “Big Three” conservative papers
Dong-A Ilbo one of the “Big Three”
JoongAng Daily one of the “Big Three,” affiliated with the International Herald Tribune
Korea Herald English-language daily, lots of economic news
Korea Times English-language daily
Hankyoreh – leading independent newspaper
Kyunghyang Shinmun Catholic-affiliated moderate to progressive newspaper
There are a wide range of blogs written by expats living in South Korea. They cover everything from the best places to eat to commentaries on expat life in Korea. Many are chock full of interesting analysis and insight, and can be an invaluable resource for life in Korea.
Some of the top blogs are listed on the Korean News Feeds site.
Expats will be pleasantly surprised to find extremely affordable and accessible medical care in Korea. However, all would be wise exercise caution in choosing medical services in Korea. Visits to the doctor typically last mere minutes, and patients should not expect the same type of bedside manner they receive in their home country.
Expats would be wise to exercise extreme caution in choosing dental services in Korea. Although many dental clinics offer extremely affordable teeth cleanings and up-to-date services other procedures, expats may find their drill-first, explain-never methods unfamiliar.
The U.S. embassy has a comprehensive list of English-speaking doctors and dentists.
For consistent medical care in Seoul, many expats visit Yonsei University’s Severance Hospital, which has an entire international wing. Patients can expect to pay higher fees, but will be in good hands with doctors that are guaranteed to speak English.
For less urgent visits, it can be prudent to visit a local clinic. Receiving care is quick and super cheap. Talk to a fellow Korean co-worker to find a place near your work or home. You may have to ask someone to accompany you to translate, but many doctors are quite proficient in English due to their training. Also expect doctors to prescribe you several pills to take for a very short amount of time – and don’t expect him or her to explain what they actually are unless you are brave enough to ask.
For adventurous expats interested in learning more about the Korean language, there are a multitude of resources here. The primary ways people learn Korean (from least to most intensive) are:
-language exchange with a Korean
-attending a Korean-language hakwon (private academy)
-attending a university-level Korean class
The website that is currently exploding in popularity is Talk to Me in Korean (http://www.talktomeinkorean.com/). The website has a wealth of short lessons accompanied by premium resources available for purchase.
Other helpful sites include Sogang University’s free online tutorial complete with listening exercises and quizzes for each section (http://korean.sogang.ac.kr/). The site hasn’t been updated in years, but the content is still highly relevant.
Ask your co-workers for recommendations for language exchange partners and hakwons near your work or home.