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Is dating normal in Korea?


Dating is one of the most common ways to get to know someone before settling down in a serious relationship. However, what is considered normal in one culture may not be the same in another. In South Korea, dating is a popular activity among young adults, but there are certain cultural norms and expectations that must be followed.

Cultural Background

Korean culture places a strong emphasis on family and social hierarchy. While dating is not necessarily frowned upon, it is still considered somewhat taboo, especially if the couple is not already engaged or married. This is due to the belief that marriage should be based on practical considerations rather than mere romantic attraction.

Types of Dating

There are different types of dating in Korea, ranging from casual hookups to more serious relationships. One popular form of dating is “meeting,” where groups of friends gather together to socialize and potentially meet new partners. Blind dates are also common, with friends or family members setting up two people who have never met before.

Online Dating

With the rise of technology, online dating has become increasingly popular in Korea. Apps like Tinder and Bumble have gained a following among young adults looking for casual relationships or hookups. However, online dating is still somewhat stigmatized and viewed as less legitimate than traditional forms of dating.


When it comes to dating in Korea, there are certain expectations that must be met. Couples are expected to dress well and act appropriately in public, as appearances are important in Korean culture. Additionally, men are typically expected to pay for dates and take the lead in pursuing a relationship.

Social Pressures

While dating is generally accepted in Korea, there can still be social pressures that make it difficult for couples to be open about their relationship. For example, public displays of affection are not common and can be viewed as inappropriate. Additionally, some families may disapprove of their children dating someone from a different social or economic background.

Gender Roles

Traditional gender roles still play a significant role in Korean dating culture. Men are expected to be the primary breadwinners and providers, while women are typically responsible for managing the household and raising children. While these roles are slowly changing, they still influence the way relationships are formed and maintained in Korea.

Interracial Dating

Interracial dating is becoming more common in Korea, although it is still somewhat taboo. Many Koreans prefer to date within their own race, and there can be cultural and language barriers that make it difficult for couples from different backgrounds to communicate effectively.


In Korea, marriage is still viewed as an important milestone in life. Couples who have been dating for a while may feel pressure to get engaged or married, especially if they are nearing their late 20s or early 30s. However, the decision to marry is often based on practical considerations such as financial stability and social status.


While dating in Korea can be exciting and rewarding, there are also challenges that couples must navigate. Differences in culture, language, and social expectations can cause misunderstandings and disagreements. Additionally, the pressure to conform to societal norms can put a strain on relationships.


In conclusion, dating is a normal part of life in Korea, but there are cultural norms and expectations that must be followed. Traditional gender roles, social pressures, and expectations surrounding marriage can all impact the way relationships are formed and maintained in Korean culture. Despite these challenges, many young adults in Korea continue to pursue romantic relationships and find happiness with their partners.

Is dating common in South Korea?

Korean dating norms may differ from those in Europe or America, as public displays of affection (PDA) are typically more reserved in South Korea. However, couples in South Korea tend to be more open and obvious about their relationship status in public.

Is hookup culture popular in Korea?

While hookup culture may not be as widespread in Korea as it is in other Western countries, it still exists and can be found fairly easily. Based on personal experience, Korean men tend to be upfront about their romantic intentions and will communicate what they are seeking.

Is it hard for a foreigner to date in Korea?

For foreigners, dating in South Korea can be challenging due to the different dating customs, etiquettes, and activities followed by Koreans. It is essential to understand the country’s unique dating culture before dating someone from South Korea to ensure a hassle-free experience.

How long do people in Korea date before marriage?

In Korea, it is common for couples to exchange rings to celebrate their 100-day anniversary. Ultimately, we wish for you to have an enjoyable experience if you decide to date while residing in Korea.

Is kissing a big deal in Korea?

Public displays of affection, such as kissing, are viewed as inappropriate and disrespectful by older generations in South Korea, although younger adults are more accepting of it. However, dressing well is highly valued in the country and is seen as a form of showing respect.

Is kiss common in South Korea?

Korean couples commonly engage in public displays of affection (PDA), despite it being considered a sinful behavior. While more intimate moments should be kept private, holding hands, giving a quick kiss or peck is a normal sight in Korean dating culture.

It is important to note that while Korean dating culture may have its challenges, it is also evolving and changing over time. Younger generations are more open to exploring new forms of relationships and breaking away from traditional gender roles. Additionally, the rise of social media and online dating has made it easier for people to connect with others outside of their immediate social circles.

Another aspect of Korean dating culture to consider is the concept of “skinship,” which refers to physical touch and intimacy between couples. While public displays of affection are not common, couples in Korea often engage in skinship through hand-holding, hugging, and cuddling in private settings.

One interesting trend in Korean dating culture is the rise of “couple looks,” where couples dress alike or wear matching accessories as a way to show off their relationship. This trend has become particularly popular among young couples, who see it as a way to express their love and commitment to each other.

Overall, dating in Korea can be complex and challenging, but it is also a unique and rewarding experience. Whether through traditional means or modern technology, people in Korea continue to find ways to connect with each other and build meaningful relationships.

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