Tip 5: Chuseok Weekend Planning

So if you didn’t know, the Koreans celebrate a Thanksgiving-like holiday called Chuseok from Sunday to Tuesday during the first week of September. I’m completely ignorant of this holiday so research it yourself, but what I do know is RESTAURANTS¬† AND PLACES CLOSE DURING THIS TIME!!! So I’m about to inform you a list of what to expect, plan, or suggested places to enjoy during this lazy period that gives college students an excuse for a 5 day weekend (yes we get even Wednesday off for some magical reason).

WHAT TO EXPECT DURING CHUSEOK:

  • 99% of restaurants are closed down. Since everyone is meeting with their extended (or immediate) families, ain’t nobody got time to feed your lazy-self. Don’t worry, your friendly convenience stores are still running.
  • If you’re not expecting to cook, can’t find an open restaurant, or don’t prefer fast food places like Burger King and McDonald’s, expect to be eating kimbap, onigiri, and ramyun from the convenience store. Maybe a microwaveable burger can be found in the back area of the store.
  • There still will be Koreans everywhere. Just like how on Thanksgiving you can still find Americans roaming the world, Koreans are no different. Not everyone is inside celebrating, so don’t expect amusement parks to be just full of foreigners or even completely empty.
  • Discounts for foreigners. FIND THEM. Because owners of certain places are still greedy for that dough, if you do your research you can find discounts on places like amusement parks *cough cough* Everland, Lotte World, Caribbean Bay.
  • A LOT of other people are thinking of going to Jeju Island too. If you were thinking this was the perfect time to travel, it might just be more expensive than usual, ESPECIALLY if you’re buying tickets last minute. Since it’s pretty much a thing for others to want to go to this Hawaii-like location, chances are the only airline that goes here knows it and is bumping up prices during this time. Expect a crowd. EXPECT IT.

SUGGESTIONS BEFORE/DURING CHUSEOK:

  • Plan, plan, plan! It’s only been 1 week of class orientations and now you have the golden opportunity of having fun for 5 days without homework or studying to think about so don’t waste it with poor planning.
  • Buy groceries ahead of time at E-Mart or a nearby grocery store with the thoughts of what to cook for each day if you were going to be a smart hoe about how to feed yourself.
    • Recommended dishes: salads, fruits, pho, soups, chicken, different noodle dishes, fried rice, omelets, sunny-side-up/scrambled/hard-boild eggs
  • Go to Dongdaemun for open restaurants because the Uzbekistani and Kazakhstani restaurants aren’t closing during this golden opportunity of majorly decreased competition for hungry hoes.
  • Go to an amusement park and mention that you’re a foreigner if they are offering “foreigner discount” (Everland: 40,000 W ~25,000 W || Lotte World: 30,000 W ~15,000 W || Caribbean Bay: I don’t remember but if you go to Everland than going to Caribbean Bay afterwards is cheaper.)
  • Go to Jeju Island if you so desire. I didn’t go because of poor planning, but heard it was fun.
  • Go to the Han River and have your own picnic. Who DOESN’T want to enjoy chicken and alcohol by a calm river in Seoul? Picnic mats are 2,000-3,000 W at Daiso and come in multiple colors.
  • Go to the movies at MegaBox
  • Go to the aquarium at Coex (building area that also has MegaBox in it) || ~22,000 W per person
  • Go shopping in Gangnam, Idae, or anywhere
  • Go to the countryside or sight-see
  • Find out if there is any cool exhibit or museum opened and go to it. I missed out on visiting the Hayao Miyazaki exhibit that had a lot of cool set-ups of scenes from his animated movies

So I’m serious guys. Plan out this golden weekend. Know which activities or places you will be going to for EACH DAY or you just might lose a day of fun from figuring it out all too late. Also, don’t promise 2 different friend groups to do something on the same day. Happy planning!~

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