Information About Visa, Currencies and Climate

 

Passport and Visa

   Every foreign visitor entering Korea must present a valid passport. Visitors from countries requiring visas should apply at the Korean consular offices of diplomatic missions in their respective countries before their departure. Visitors from some countries may stay 15 days without VISA. For details, participants are advised to contact their local travel agent, carrier or Korean diplomats.

 

Currencies and Credit Cards

   The unit of Korean currency is Won. Coin denominations are 10Won, 50Won, 100Won, and 500Won. Bank notes are 1,000Won, 5,000Won, and 10,000Won. Foreign banknotes and traveler's checks can be converted into Korean Won at foreign exchange banks and other authorized money changers. The exchange rate is subject to market fluctuation. One U.S. dollar is equivalent to about 1150Won as of March, 2000. Major credit cards, including VISA, American Express, Diners Club, and MasterCard are accepted at most hotels, department stores, and restaurants.

Climate and Clothing

   The climate of Seoul is comparable to that of New York, Paris, London and Tokyo. Temperature varies between 32.8oC to -15.4oC according to each season. Anual average precipitation is 1,200-1,400mm. To ensure a pleasant trip, visitors are advised to consider prior to departure what time of the year in Korea is the proposed time of visit.

   Spring lasts from mid- March to mid-June. The weather in early spring is quite unpredictable. Temperature change considerably between early morning and late afternoon. In early spring it is frequently windy and the wind often contains yellow dust from northern China. But, in mid-April to May, beautiful weather continues and it is also when most flowers (azaleas, magnolias and golden bells etc.) blossom.

   Summer starts in about mid-June and lasts though August. Korean summer is typically very hot and humid, with the highest temperature of 93F(34°C). Heavy rainfall is usually expected in June (which lasts for about 10-15 days). However, from late July to mid-August the weather is usually clear, although it is also the hottest period in a year. Many Koreans leave for vacation areas or overseas in this time of the year.

   Autumn in Korea lasts from September to mid-November. Along with spring, it is said to be the most beautiful and enjoyable season in Korea. It is a highly desirable season for hiking, mountain climbing, and various outdoor activities. Fresh air and clear blue sky are typically famous about the season, but also the changing colors of the trees produce a magnificent look in the entire Korean Penninsula. Autumn also includes Korean Traditional Thanksgiving day (15th of September by lunar calendar).
Also many festivals open in autumn.

   Winter is very dry and cold in Korea, which lasts through mid-November to February. The sky is usually clear and the average temperature for mid-winter is 16-19F(-9~-7°C). It snows occasionally but several provinces next to Seoul has some excellent skiing slopes.

 


This page is maintained by Hee-Ju Chang (hjchang@bi.snu.ac.kr).
Last update: April 15, 2001.