Cultural Observations

It is SO good to be back in Korea!!

As soon I ordered a berry smoothie in the Seoul Incheon Airport in Korean and paid for it with my Korean debit card, I knew I was home.

Here are some random observations from my trip to Taiwan.

Things Taiwan and Korea have in common:

  • Older Asian men hocking up spit balls and spitting them onto the sidewalk.
  • Signs in English.
  • 7-Eleven, Family Mart, Cold Stone, Etude House (make up place), Subway, Baskin Robbins, all the usual fast food (McDonalds, Burger King, KFC).
  • Obsession with fancy Christmas decorations.
  • Really clean subways/metro rails.
  • Lots of bakeries and Japanese restaurants.
  • People strictly follow the “stand on the right, walk on the left” rule on the escalators in the subway.
  • Lots of people staring at me.

Things that are different in Korea from Taiwan:

  • Koreans bow a lot more.
  • In Korea, we have awesome ondol heating (floor heating). Last night, I was steeling myself to crawl into my freezing cold bed (which happens to be next to a window that doesn’t seal in the heat very well) when I thought, “What is the point of having a heated floor if you don’t use it at night when you are the coldest?” So I slept on the floor. And it was awesome.
  • Koreans are more obsessed with their smartphones.
  • Taiwan has bubble tea.
  • At the Taiwanese crosswalks, the green man on the screen actually walks! And then starts running when your time is almost up! Haha, i miss that green walking man…
  • Everything in Taiwan is cheaper (at least food/transportation-wise).
  • In Korea, I can read and speak the language!



Subscribe to the Mailing List
Liked what you read? Don't miss out on future posts!

Enter your email below to receive's weekly updates! (You will also get access to the exclusive email series Jumpstart Your Journey.)

I promise to keep your email safe from spammers!

Posted by

Elizabeth is an American living in South Korea who believes in destiny, miracles, and living life intentionally. She holds to simple faith in a complex world, values the beauty of the everyday, and strives for vulnerability with other imperfect humans. She is always learning, laughing, and finding herself in awe of grace.

Add your thoughts

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.