Life After Korea: Frantically Packing

Hey Everyone!
Tis‘ the season for contracts ending and decisions to be made.

Should I stay or Should I go?

Leaving Korea can be a difficult decision. 

For some, the time has come to move back to their home and leave Korea in their memories.

Wait.
Are you telling me I have to get everything I’ve accumulated over the past year/years out of here before the new teacher gets here?

((Cue panic))

Take it from someone who has moved home TWICE yes you read that correctly TWICE it is a pain in the BUTT.

The best way to move everything without having an anxiety attack/ meltdown/ crying episode is

Prioritize
Yes, you read that correctly. I wrote a list of everything I needed to accomplish before I was kicked out of my tiny apartment.

First:
You need to separate what you are going to keep
What selling/donating
Things that you are a maybe for taking home

Play for Keeps


After you’ve sectioned this all out set out your suitcases and start packing things you are definitely taking home.

See how much room you have left or any room at all.

*Note: I had 2 giant suitcases and 1 small one. My husband had 1 big one and 1 medium-sized suitcase.  He stuffed his full of ramen.

Something that was super helpful for me for each of my moving adventures was shipping boxes. 

Did you know that if you get a #4 size box from KPS you can ship it for 40,000KRW (40 bucks USD)?

 It will take 3 solid months to get to you but it’s totally worth it for people like me who are pack rats and love stationary & skin care things.

I sent 4 boxes when I moved full of skincare, gifts, and souvenirs from my travels. And of course clothes.

Shipping your stuff can be a big pain but the shipping boxes helped me A LOT. Just remember don’t check the box for airmail or else it’ll cost you way more than 40 bucks!

Selling/Donating

Leaving can be kinda expensive. So I ended up selling a ton of my stuff.
Your best bet to sell things is through the expat facebook groups.

Expat Women in Korea
Expat Women in Korea Buy/Sell
HBC/Itaewon Information Board
Craigs List Seoul

If you have a Korean friend that is willing to help you, you could post your things on a Korean forum as well. When I had a couch and a giant oven my husband put our stuff on there and we got a good amount of money for our stuff!

Make sure to take clear pictures of your items and mark the price on each picture. So that way it doesn’t cause any confusion and people don’t try to stiff you on pricing.

**Be cautious when using these selling forums because you will get the occasional creep or overly friendly person trying to holla at you. Just use good judgment. **

If you find yourself unlucky selling your items try asking around to your coworkers and maybe their friends to see if they need anything. Usually, if you give your items to your coworkers they might want it for free or discounted. Just be do what you feel it right.

Throw it away!
**Bye Felicia**

You’d think throwing away trash is a fairly simple task.
Not in Korea.
If you’ve lived there long enough you are familiar with the color coated bags. One for food trash, one for trash to be burned and the other for miscellaneous stuff.

Be aware that if you are throwing big items like couches, bookshelves, or anything that cant fit in your trash bag it’ll need a TAG.

Many of my friends that have moved out of their hagwon apartments have put their things on the curb only to get penalized for throwing it away without a permit. I also had a friend who got the penalty taken out of their paycheck. Ouch.

If you are unsure where to buy the tag or how much you should be paying for said tag, take a picture of the item and ask where to buy the tag to your local CU, GS25, or 711 clerk.
I bought mine at the community center near my home. If you have trouble communicating in Korean you could ask your boss or Korean teacher for a little help on the matter. They’ll be able to point you in the right direction.

For clothing, there is usually a donation box in every neighborhood so you can put shoes and clothing in the box if you are feeling generous or just antsy because you couldn’t sell it online.

When you move out make sure it’s clean-ish and chunk up the deuce to your landlord! 

**Also remember February is the time for everyone who is leaving in March to cash out their pension. I recommend doing this sooner rather than later. I also suggest finding the nearest office to your house/hagwon to make this process go smoothly. I went to the one at Samsung station near Gangnam. They were very kind and I was in and out in 20 minutes.

That’s it for this week y’all!!

Happy packing !!

xoxo
Julie Ko

p.s. you know very well that everything in that “maybe” needs to get thrown away. Just trying to help you out 😉

Cafe Gals visit Loui Ruth’s Itaewon!

Loui Ruth’s is a chill brunch cafe just down the street from Itaewon Station. They serve fluffy and delicious pancakes and super filling french toast. They also have a decent sized drink menu. We thought the prices for the drinks were pretty cheap compared to other cafes in the area. 


Now let’s get into the details here:
Prices:
Brunch: ₩7.5~₩13.0
Drinks: ₩3.9-₩5.5
Menu:English and Korean

Wifi: Yes

Pet Friendly:No

Atmosphere: chill with loud music

Seating: Around 25 people max.

Instagram Worthy: not really


Thoughts:

We thought this place was pretty good but wasn’t really worth the price. Good American breakfast food isn’t hard to find in Seoul anymore and there are better options. However, it is a nice place to sit and chat with friends over a good and inexpensive drink. You can even share a platter of pancakes or french toast as they are really filling! 

🚨Julie and I gave this cafe🚨

☕☕/5

💕
Address:

서울 용산구 이태원로210
Seoul, Yongsan-gu  Itaewon-ro 210
🌟Exit 3 of Itaewon Station

Open
Monday~ Friday
11:00~11:00
Phone Number
02.512.6257

xoxo

Cafe  Girls 

 

Finding a comfortable spot

This week marks 2 months since my husband and I hopped on a plane and left Seoul, South Korea.

The past 2 months have been hectic and awkward as we have been trying our best to find our comfortable spot back home.

A little background on me:
I moved to Seoul in the Fall of 2013 and met my husband in Seoul (at Ultra Music Festival in the summer of 2014). After we started dating I kept extending my contract and stayed in Korea wayyyyy longer than I ever expected. He then served his 2 year military service, we got hitched, and moved back home!

Living life after Korea is kind of weird to be honest.

Especially since my husband isn’t an American citizen it’s like rediscovering my American pride all over again.

Seeing Dallas through his eyes has actually opened mine and has made me appreciate being a Texan.

But truth be told a piece of me misses Korea and it’s crazy magnetic energy. To be completely honest I miss everything but working in Korea.

Coming back home has brought up emotions and opinions I never really knew were there.

Looking for a new job, seeing my friends and family, moving in with my dad, and managing my money has all been a giant change. 

Life after Korea has had some glitches so far but my husband and I have started using our time wisely and that’s how I ended up starting a more “professional” blog!

GO ME!

To all my fellow expats out there who have lived abroad and moved back home:

How did you feel? 
What were some of your biggest concerns/problems readjusting?
Do you regret coming home?

I’d really love to hear your point of view on this!

I’ll actually be starting a weekly segment dedicated to different topics that have come up in the past 2 months since I’ve moved back!

I hope this is as cathartic for you as it is for me. 

Happy Monday Everyone!

xoxo

Julie Ko

Cafe Gals visit Sayoo in Itaewon

Sayoo is a huge cafe with a lot to do! There are 5 floors, each  with their own theme. This cafe has a space for everyone from movie buffs to artsy people to people who just like to chill on a good rooftop. They have delicious drinks and even yummier cakes!


1F Cafe

2F Fashion Store

3F Cinema Cafe

4F Gallery Cafe

5F Rooftop

Now let’s get into the details here:


Prices: 

4,500 KRW – 10,000 KRW

Menu:

Korean and English 

Wifi: 

Yes!

Pet Friendly:

No

Atmosphere: 

Each floor had it’s own vibe!

Seating: 

Lots of seats on each floor!

Instagram Worthy:

For sure!

Thoughts:

Sayoo is such a nice to come to when you need to relax. Julie and I checked out each floor for a bit. The first floor is where you order everything. There are a few one seaters so you can sit and wait for your coffee. The second floor is the store. Each time we went it was closed, it was pretty late at night though. The third floor is the cinema room. They have a huge wall where they show all kinds of different movies. The room is huge and has a lot of space to work. (Don’t worry the movie is silent.) The fourth was our favorite; the Gallery. They had a bunch of art from paintings to sculptures. They even had sketchbooks and other art supplies up there; free to use! Unfortunately the rooftop was being renovated at the time we went plus it was dark so there wasn’t much to see there. 

The drinks…

Definitely come check this place out! 

 

🚨Julie and I gave this cafe🚨

☕☕☕☕☕/5

💕

Address:

서울 용산구 이태원로 54길 5
 5 Itaewon-ro 54-gil,  Yongsan-gu, Seoul

🌟 Go out of exit 3 from Hanggangjin Station and walk for about 5 minutes. Turn left at the 3rd street, it will be on your left. 

Open

Sunday-Thursday 1:00-10:00

Friday-Saturday 11:00-11:00 

Phone Number

02. 2289.9050

 📷Their Instagram📷

Stay caffeinated my friends! 

xoxo

Cheyenne & Julie