Everything Unexpected: Culture Shocks when I first came to Korea | HaB Korea.net

I would like to share with all of you about culture and environmental differences  I had experienced during my first time in South, Korea. Since my Filipina sister is currently living with her Korean family in Jeonju, they invited me to visit my niece and nephew whose I am very close with. My first-time experiences in South, Korea was unforgettable and extraordinary. But, as a person who grew up in Manila, the culture shocks I had experience was unexpected and always left me hanging beside the Korean language.

These are the few of them:


I am surprised that they have a very organized bus transportation system. You can’t just ride if you don’t know the route of each bus. Every bus has its own number on it and it indicates their route. There is a map on every waiting shed when you can track what number of the bus you will be taking. There are also guidelines of destinations indicating the route of the bus. The problem is if you can’t read the Korean language, you’ll get lost. But I am not sure if there are English translations in other cities. It is good for people when commuting. I don’t why Manila can’t adapt to this kind of well-organized transportation. Because in Manila, we can just drop-in and drop-by everywhere we want to. Just saying.

Everything Unexpected: Culture Shocks when I first came to KoreaA photo of my sister struggling on our way home


Yes, almost everyone. Not just because of their very good type of skin, but because of how they dress and how they bring fashion on their everyday lives. That’s why when I have to go and tour around the area, it is mandatory for me to dress up. From head to toe, everything must be good or unique. I always put make-up on my face to look presentable, since make-ups for men is also a trend in South Korea. My clothes are always based on K-POP IDOLS or K-DRAMA actors. That’s my chance to look unique and handsome because I can’t do it in the Philippines, too hot and too judgemental. Just saying.

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Everything Unexpected: Culture Shocks when I first came to KoreaA photo of me with colored hair, wearing ripped denim pants, a long black and white jacket inside, a navy blue sweatshirt outside, a gray scarf for neck, a black accessory scarf on the back, sunglasses, gloves, and BB cream.


When we travel, we take a lot of photos to preserve memories in a way of technology. We also share it on our social media accounts. That’s why we always need an internet connection everywhere we go. While I was exploring the town in Jeonju, I had noticed that there are a lot of wifi-connections and it has no passwords! Simply means, you can connect to the internet everywhere you are. You just need to find some area and then there you go, you have it. Also, about the speed of the internet, it was pretty amazing! At my sister’s house, I can upload a 5minutes video for within just a few seconds. That’s how fast their internet is! Not like in Manila, you upload 5minutes video, and it will take you 10minutes to wait. Just saying.

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Everything Unexpected: Culture Shocks when I first came to KoreaThis best describes the speed of the internet


The first time I met the parents of my brother-in-law, I got scared. They speak like they are you are being scolded by your Filipina Mom. It was hard to cope up at first, but you have to get used to it because it is their mannerism. Loud talking or like being mad when they talk but they are not. When you are sensitive about this kind of talking, you’ll get offended. But I am sure you can cope up. As on my experiences, I just accept, understand and respect their way of talking because it is a part of their culture. It’s just so new for me at that time because in Manila when you speak loud, and on a high tone, it means you’re mad.

Everything Unexpected: Culture Shocks when I first came to KoreaWith the Park Family, on the left side is our Harabuji and on the left is Halmoni. The one with the ribbon is my Brother-in-law.

These are just a few cultures shocks things you will encounter in South, Korea. It is just easy to cope up on some but most things are hard sometimes. You just have to adapt their everyday lives and respect it. We may have differences but I believe it is not a barrier to create a good relationship with each other. There will always be a way to cope up, and the best way is LOVE. Love their culture, love the routine, love the traditions and most important is love the people.

About the author

Hi Everyone! I am a Sales Representative of HaB Korea here in the Philippines | How can I help you? | "Travel the best way you could!"

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