Saving Money

Saving money in Korea depends on a few criteria-location, lifestyle and discipline.

Location

If you live in a big city versus a town, you will encounter much to spend your money on like big shopping malls, many bars/pubs. movie theaters and restaurants that serve westernized food. While this is great as a distraction, especially if you are in Korea on your own, you will find your monthly stipend decreasing rapidly.

If you live in a small town, not only are you paid more (W 100,000 extra) but you should not have as many  distractions to spend your hard-earned cash on.

Lifestyle and Discipline

We have joined Lifestyle and discipline together as we feel they are linked very strongly to each other.  It all depends on your priorities.

In general if you enjoy drinking every weekend or, possibly heading to Seoul to escape the small town for the big city lights, or embarking on expensive weekend or shopping excursions very regularly, then saving will prove to be a problem.

If you decide from the outset that saving is your no.1 priority then you will be able to achieve it with ease on the salary that you will earn.

In general, as a single person working in Korea, you should be able to save around R 5000.00 per month (around $500 US). As a couple you could save exponentially more. In our case we managed to save one entire salary and live and travel internationally twice a year on the other.

Even with our savings per month, we certainly did not count every penny we were spending in order that we could save as much as we could. Our lifestyle was such that we did not over indulge on things, but at the same time had a great financial worry-free time nonetheless.

In other words, we went to Seoul when we needed or wanted to but combined many activities while there, we joined occasional excursions and chose carefully when we did to get the maximum interest and enjoyment from them. We generally cooked dinner at home but enjoyed frequent meals out with friends.

Our rule essentially was to not live beyond/above your means. It worked well for us, hopefully it will for you too.

 

The Baekje Festival

The Baekje Festival is probably the largest and most important annual event to occur in both the towns of Buyeo and Gongju simultaneously. The festival is held in October of every year and lasts 9 days.

“A world-class historical and cultural event.”

The opening and closing ceremonies are not to be missed with the traditional firework display in conjunction with volunteers and  students dressing up in traditional clothes and processing down main street culminating at the Gudeurae Plaza (구드래광장) situated along the banks of the river Geum.

The procession is very popular as the entire main road in Buyeo in closed off and hundreds of locals and foreigners alike line the street in anticipation of the costumed spectacle.

Music blares from speakers as horses accompanied by volunteers walk down the street wearing traditional period clothing with flags waving eagerly back at the spectators.

There is an array of activities and displays for the entire family which include dance, music, art, drama, cooking, and food to suit every palate. It is  week in the Korean Festival calendar where the locals celebrate their cultural heritage in style. Its well worth the visit.