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Do Koreans kiss when dating?


Korean culture is rich in tradition, customs, and etiquette, and dating is no exception. When it comes to dating, every culture has its own set of rules and expectations. One of the most common questions about Korean dating culture is whether or not Koreans kiss when dating. In this article, we will explore the answer to this question in detail.

The History of Korean Kissing Culture

Korean culture has a long history of kissing, with evidence dating back to the Three Kingdoms period. However, kissing was not always a common practice in Korean dating culture. In fact, it was only introduced to Korea during the Japanese occupation in the early 20th century. Before then, physical contact between men and women was strictly prohibited by Confucianism.

The Role of Confucianism in Korean Dating Culture

Confucianism has played a significant role in shaping Korean dating culture. According to Confucianism, physical contact between men and women is considered inappropriate before marriage. This belief has influenced Korean society for centuries, even today.

Modern Korean Kissing Culture

Despite Confucianism’s influence on Korean society, kissing has become more common among young Koreans in recent years. However, it is still not as prevalent as it is in Western cultures. Many young Koreans prefer to keep their physical affection private and reserve it for more intimate moments.

Kissing on the First Date

Kissing on the first date is not common in Korean dating culture. Most Koreans prefer to take things slow and get to know their potential partner before taking any physical steps. However, this varies from person to person.

Kissing in Public

Public displays of affection are generally frowned upon in Korean society, including kissing. Couples who engage in public displays of affection may be subject to criticism or judgment from others.

Physical Contact in Korean Dating Culture

While kissing is not as common in Korean dating culture, physical contact is not entirely prohibited. Holding hands and hugging are more acceptable forms of physical contact among couples.

The Role of Age and Status in Korean Dating Culture

Age and status play a significant role in Korean dating culture. Older couples are less likely to engage in physical contact, while younger couples may be more comfortable with it. Additionally, status differences between partners can influence the level of physical contact.

The Impact of Western Culture on Korean Kissing Culture

The influence of Western culture has led to changes in Korean kissing culture. As more Koreans travel and study abroad, they are exposed to different dating norms and may adopt them when they return home.


In conclusion, while kissing is not as common in Korean dating culture as it is in Western cultures, it is still a part of modern Korean dating practices. However, cultural and societal expectations surrounding physical contact can make it challenging for couples to express their affection publicly.

Future of Korean Kissing Culture

The future of Korean kissing culture is uncertain. As Korea becomes more globally connected, it is possible that the influence of Western dating norms will continue to impact Korean dating practices. However, it is also possible that traditional Korean values will remain prevalent.

Advice for Dating in Korea

If you’re interested in dating someone from Korea, it’s essential to be respectful of their culture and customs. Take things slow, be patient, and communicate openly about your expectations and boundaries. Remember that every person is unique, and there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to dating in any culture.

Do Korean guys kiss on the first date?

In Korean culture, it is not common to engage in physical displays of affection such as holding hands or kissing on a first date. While a man may desire to hold hands, kissing on the first date is generally considered unacceptable. Additionally, public displays of affection are not well-received in Korean society.

Is kissing a big deal in Korea?

Public displays of affection, particularly kissing, are frowned upon and considered indecent by older individuals in South Korea. Although younger adults are more accepting of it, the practice is still discouraged by the elders. Dressing appropriately is crucial in South Korean culture as it is seen as a sign of showing respect.

Do Korean couples kiss?

In Korea, couples may coordinate their outfits, but they tend to be more conservative when it comes to showing physical affection in public. While holding hands is common, kissing on the lips is not as accepted. People from countries that are more open about displays of affection should save it for private settings.

What is Korean dating culture like?

The amount of public displays of affection considered appropriate in South Korean dating culture may be surprising as it is less intense than what is commonly seen in Europe or America. However, couples in South Korea are more open about their relationship status in public and may be more noticeable. This is a characteristic of South Korean dating culture.

How do Koreans flirt?

In Korean culture, flirting is similar to what is depicted in Korean dramas. People use charming and endearing phrases to express their affection to the person they like. Apart from verbal flirting, they also engage in cute behaviors known as aegyo (애교).

Is hookup culture common in Korea?

While hookup culture is not as widespread in Korea as it is in other western countries, it is still present. In my observations, Korean men are known for their honesty about their intentions and will openly communicate what they are seeking.

It’s also important to understand that dating in Korea is often seen as a serious commitment. Many Koreans view dating as a step towards marriage, and there is a strong emphasis on finding a partner who shares similar values and goals. This means that the dating process may be more intentional and focused on long-term compatibility than in some other cultures.

Another aspect of Korean dating culture to keep in mind is the importance of family. Family ties are highly valued in Korean society, and it’s not uncommon for couples to involve their families in their relationship early on. This may include introducing their partner to parents or seeking their approval before making any significant decisions.

In terms of gender roles, traditional gender expectations are still prevalent in Korean dating culture. While there have been some shifts towards gender equality, men are generally expected to take the lead in relationships and make the first move when it comes to asking someone out or initiating physical contact.

Finally, it’s worth noting that dating apps have become increasingly popular in Korea in recent years. While many Koreans still meet potential partners through friends, work, or social activities, dating apps offer another avenue for meeting new people. However, it’s essential to approach these apps with caution and carefully vet potential matches to ensure your safety and compatibility.

Overall, navigating Korean dating culture can be challenging, but by being respectful, open-minded, and willing to learn, you can build meaningful connections with people from this fascinating culture.

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