website free tracking What is the Korean drinking age? - Namhan South Korea ??

What is the Korean drinking age?


Korean culture is different from the Western world in many ways. One of the most significant differences is the drinking age. In Korea, the legal drinking age is not the same as in other countries. This article aims to provide a comprehensive and detailed explanation of what the Korean drinking age is and why it is different from other countries.

History of the Korean Drinking Age

The Korean drinking age has a complex history. In the past, there was no legal drinking age in Korea. However, in 2001, the government raised the minimum drinking age from 19 to 20. Then, in 2013, the government raised it again to 21. The purpose of these changes was to decrease alcohol consumption among young people.

Legal Drinking Age in Korea

In Korea, the legal drinking age is 19 years old. This means that anyone who is 19 or older can purchase and consume alcohol legally. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, soldiers who are on active duty can drink at the age of 18.

Drinking Culture in Korea

Drinking plays a significant role in Korean culture. Koreans often drink while socializing with friends or colleagues after work. They also have various drinking games and rituals that are unique to their culture. However, excessive drinking can also lead to health problems and social issues.

Alcohol Consumption in Korea

Koreans are known for their love of alcohol, and it is a significant part of their culture. According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), Koreans consume an average of 12.3 liters of pure alcohol per year. This puts them among the highest drinkers in Asia.

Penalties for Underage Drinking in Korea

Underage drinking is illegal in Korea, and there are strict penalties for breaking this law. If someone is caught drinking underage, they can face fines and even imprisonment. The severity of the punishment depends on the circumstances of the offense.

Drinking Laws in Korea

Korea has strict laws regarding alcohol consumption. For example, it is illegal to drink in public places such as parks or beaches. It is also illegal to drive while under the influence of alcohol. The police enforce these laws rigorously, and offenders can face severe penalties.

Why is the Drinking Age Different in Korea?

The Korean government raised the legal drinking age to reduce alcohol consumption among young people. They believed that this would help to decrease the number of alcohol-related accidents and social problems. Additionally, Korea has a unique drinking culture that is different from other countries.

Alcohol-Related Problems in Korea

Despite the efforts to reduce alcohol consumption, Korea still faces many alcohol-related problems. These include drunk driving accidents, alcoholism, and social issues such as violence and sexual harassment. The government continues to implement policies to address these issues.

Alcohol Education in Korea

To combat the negative effects of excessive drinking, the Korean government has implemented various educational programs. These programs aim to educate young people about responsible drinking and the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption. Many universities and schools also offer courses on alcohol education.


In conclusion, the legal drinking age in Korea is 19 years old. However, underage drinking is illegal and can result in severe penalties. The Korean government has implemented various policies and programs to reduce alcohol consumption among young people and address the negative effects of excessive drinking on society. By educating people about responsible drinking, Korea hopes to create a healthier and safer drinking culture for future generations.

Can you drink at 18 in Korean?

One factor contributing to Jordan’s growing popularity among tourists is its lenient laws regarding alcohol. As long as you are over 18 and not attempting to purchase during a Muslim holiday, it is legal to drink in Jordan as long as you do not do so publicly or excessively.

Can you drink at 16 in Korea?

In Korea, it is currently legal to consume alcohol at the age of 19, as of September 26, 2020.

Can you go to bars at 18 in Korea?

In South Korea, the legal drinking age is based on Korean age and is set at 20 years old. The same age requirement applies for entry into most nightclubs in the country.

Is 18 a minor in Korea?

The definition of “child” refers to an individual who hasn’t reached the age of 18.

What is Japan’s drinking age?

In Japan, the age of legal adulthood is 20 and it is against the law for individuals under this age to consume alcohol or tobacco. It is important to note that pressuring anyone, regardless of their age, to drink or smoke can lead to negative health and social outcomes.

What country is 13 the legal drinking age?

The legal age for purchasing or being served alcohol varies across different countries. Burkina Faso has the lowest legal age at 13, while Eritrea has the highest legal age at 25, as of December 31st, 2018.

Another reason why the drinking age in Korea is different from other countries is due to cultural and societal differences. In Korea, drinking is often seen as a way to build and maintain social relationships, especially in business settings. Refusing a drink can be seen as impolite or disrespectful, which can make it difficult for young professionals to navigate social situations without alcohol.

Korean society also places a high value on conformity and respect for authority figures, including parents and elders. This can make it challenging for young people to resist peer pressure to drink or to disobey their parents’ wishes regarding alcohol consumption.

Despite the challenges, there are efforts underway to promote healthier drinking habits among young people in Korea. The government has implemented stricter regulations around alcohol advertising and sales, and there is growing awareness of the health risks associated with excessive drinking.

In addition, there are a growing number of non-alcoholic options available at bars and restaurants, which can help reduce pressure on non-drinkers and encourage more responsible drinking habits overall.

Ultimately, changing cultural attitudes towards alcohol consumption will take time, but it is clear that there is a growing recognition of the need for healthier drinking habits in Korean society. By continuing to raise awareness and promote responsible drinking practices, Korea can create a safer and more sustainable drinking culture for future generations.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top