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What are you not allowed to bring into Korea?

Introduction

Korea is a country that has its own set of rules and regulations when it comes to goods that can be brought in. Some items are prohibited or restricted due to safety reasons, cultural beliefs, and environmental concerns. Therefore, if you are planning to visit Korea, it is essential to know the items that are not allowed to be brought into the country.

Illegal Drugs

Korea has a strict policy on drugs. Bringing illegal drugs into the country is strictly prohibited, and the punishment can range from heavy fines to imprisonment. The Korean authorities are known for conducting thorough searches at airports and seaports.

Weapons

Bringing weapons such as guns, knives, and explosives into Korea is strictly prohibited. The only exception is if they are authorized for military purposes.

Obscene Material

Bringing obscene material such as pornography, erotic literature, and sex toys into Korea is strictly prohibited. The Korean authorities consider such items as a threat to public morals and decency.

Counterfeit Goods

Bringing counterfeit goods into Korea is strictly prohibited. Counterfeit goods include products that infringe on intellectual property laws such as fake designer bags, watches, and electronics.

Food Items

Certain food items are not allowed to be brought into Korea due to the risk of spreading diseases. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and meat products are among the banned items. If you need to bring food into the country, you must declare them at customs.

Plant Seeds

Bringing plant seeds into Korea is strictly prohibited without proper documentation. The Korean authorities have strict regulations on importing plant seeds due to the risk of introducing new pests and diseases that could harm the country’s agriculture.

Cultural Artifacts

Bringing cultural artifacts such as historical artifacts, antiques, and artwork out of Korea is prohibited without proper documentation. Similarly, bringing such items into Korea is also strictly regulated.

Medicine

Bringing medicine into Korea is allowed, but it must be declared at customs. Prescription drugs must have a doctor’s prescription and medication should not exceed a three-month supply.

Electronic Devices

Bringing electronic devices such as laptops, smartphones, and tablets into Korea is allowed. However, if you plan to stay for an extended period, you need to register your devices with the Korean authorities.

Animals

Bringing pets into Korea is allowed, but there are certain regulations that need to be followed. For example, pets must have a valid health certificate and proof of rabies vaccination.

Currency

Bringing large amounts of cash into Korea without proper documentation is illegal. Any amount exceeding $10,000 or its equivalent must be declared at customs.

Conclusion

It is essential to know what items are prohibited or restricted before traveling to Korea. It will save you from any legal trouble and ensure that your stay in the country is enjoyable. To avoid confusion, it is advisable to consult with the Korean embassy or consulate in your country to get the latest information on what items are not allowed into Korea.

What is illegal to bring into Korea?

Korea strictly prohibits the entry of guns, narcotics, pornography, subversive and treasonous material, as well as counterfeit goods. This law has been in place since August 2, 2022.

What food Cannot bring to Korea?

Similar to other countries, Korea imposes restrictions on certain items such as fruits, vegetables, seeds, animal products (including beef jerky), and jams/jellies. However, I was able to bring some fruits into the country during a previous flight with my toddler, as they are more lenient with food items for young children.

Can I bring food through customs to Korea?

Is it allowed to bring food into Korea? Yes, you can bring prepared food for your own consumption, but it should not exceed a value of USD 400.

What things Korea has banned?

South Korea is one of the rare countries that explicitly bans pornography in all forms. This means that pornographic materials such as books, films, websites, and photographs are prohibited and deemed illegal within the country’s borders.

Is it illegal to wear jeans in Korea?

In North Korea, clothing items such as blue jeans, T-shirts, skirts, and suits are considered symbols of American imperialism and are therefore prohibited. Citizens are expected to wear traditional Korean clothing like hanboks instead.

Can I bring ibuprofen to Korea?

It is not necessary to declare Advil, as it is not an illegal substance. Ibuprofen is the active ingredient in Advil. Only narcotic drugs such as opium, heroin, cocaine, MDMA, hemp and Philopon, as well as Viagra, Cialis, and certain diet pills, need to be declared. Therefore, Advil does not fall into this category of substances that must be declared.

Alcohol and Tobacco

Bringing alcohol and tobacco into Korea is allowed, but there are limits on the amount you can bring. Visitors are allowed to bring one liter of alcohol and 200 cigarettes duty-free. If you plan to bring more than the allowed amount, you must pay a duty tax.

Electronic Cigarettes

Electronic cigarettes or vaping devices are allowed in Korea, but it is illegal to sell nicotine e-liquids in the country. Therefore, if you plan to bring your vaping device, make sure that it is nicotine-free.

Drone

Bringing a drone into Korea is allowed, but it must be registered with the Korean government. You need to apply for a permit before bringing your drone to Korea.

Prescription Glasses and Contact Lenses

If you wear prescription glasses or contact lenses, you are allowed to bring them into Korea. However, if you plan to bring more than three pairs of glasses or contact lenses, you need to declare them at customs.

Money Orders and Traveler’s Checks

Money orders and traveler’s checks are allowed in Korea, but they must be declared at customs. Any amount exceeding $10,000 or its equivalent must be declared.

Prohibited Items for Export

Some items are not allowed to be exported out of Korea due to their cultural or historical significance. These items include traditional Korean artworks, antiques, and historical documents. It is important to note that attempting to export these items without proper documentation can result in severe legal consequences.

In Conclusion

It is crucial to follow the rules and regulations when entering and exiting Korea. The Korean authorities take strict measures to ensure the safety and security of their citizens and visitors. Therefore, it is advisable to check with the Korean embassy or consulate in your country before traveling to Korea to get the latest information on what items are allowed and prohibited. This will ensure a smooth and hassle-free trip to Korea.

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